Some Updates

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The wife and me

Because this ain’t my first time at the summer-in-NYC rodeo, I haven’t felt like I’ve had a ton of blog-worthy updates. But of course, that isn’t true. My summer has been pretty different — well, more like entirely different — than last summer. So if you’re wondering what I’ve been up to this time around, read on! Continue reading

One Last Term

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Edinburgh!

Trinity term, the last of the academic year, is in full swing: it’s week 4 here at Oxford. Right now, the air in is a little tense–finalists (seniors) are all taking exams, and these are a big f*in deal. At Oxford, your marks (grades) in tutorials and on collections (prelims) don’t count toward a GPA. Exams in your final year are the only things that determine how well you do on your degree. High stakes, high pressure. Luckily, since I don’t have to take exams, I’m just doing what I’ve been doing all year here. Visiting students: we do a lot of work, but we have a pretty sweet deal. Continue reading

Swiss Road Trip

IMG_0969After Spain, the last leg of my grand spring break began. From Nimes, France, Sonja, her mom, and I began our road trip through Switzerland earlier than anticipated because of an unforeseen circumstance: Sonja rolled her ankle thanks to the high sidewalks in Nimes, and was prescribed crutches and some weird-looking compression socks. So after one stressful day in France and another for recovery, we piled into her mom’s blue stick-shift for a few days of driving through the Alps. Continue reading

Siestas and Churros and Tapas, Oh My!

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In the Alhambra Gardens

Oh, Spain. Beautiful, sunny Spain. Where to begin? Because I prefer grey skies to clear ones most days, and almost all architectural styles to the Spanish styles I’ve seen in America, I didn’t think I would love Spain. But soon after arriving, I realized that Spain would probably be one of my favorite legs of the trip; I realized that as immediately as I fell in love with Budapest. It was a pleasant surprise to discover that Spain ended up being one of the standouts for me. Continue reading

From Austria to Czechia

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Church of St. Barbara in Kutna Hora (and me!)

Greetings from Barcelona! It’s now been over two weeks since I left Oxford for my epic European spring break extravaganza. That means I’m halfway home! Having seen five countries and seven cities in just 15 days, I’m glad I didn’t choose to continue traveling for the entire five/six week break. It’s incredible to see parts of the world that are new to me, but fatigue is setting in, and I’m looking forward to slowing down for a bit back in the US. First, though, a recap on the second half of the first leg of my journey–confusing, I know. From Budapest, we went to Vienna and Prague. Did you know that the Czech Republic changed its English name to Czechia? Apparently, a lot of the people who live there didn’t know either, so you’re not alone. Continue reading

Bucharest, Budapest, What’s the Difference?

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Kyoka and I in front of the Hungarian Parliament!

Because transportation seems to be the only significant free time I have while traveling, I’m writing this post on the train from Budapest to Vienna. It’s been almost a week since I left Oxford with my friend, Kyoka, for our obscenely long spring break. With two cities behind us and two more ahead, the first leg of the trip is halfway over! Read on for pictures and whatnot from the first two stops: Bucharest and Budapest. Continue reading

Flying Solo

 

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Bergen fjord cruise

Instead of going straight home from Oxford at the end of term, I decided to take a jaunt through Norway and Iceland. When I first mentioned the idea, my dad thought I should hold off on making firm plans just in case I found some friends in England who might want to accompany me, but I’ve always wanted to try traveling by myself and I finally had the chance to do it. So I took a trip for myself and myself alone, and I had an incredible time. In fact, it was one of the best vacations I’ve ever taken. Now with it all behind me, I write my experiences for all to read.

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Term One: Term Done

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Me and two visiting student friends at the Merton Ball!

The last few weeks of Michaelmas term were like a whirlwind–the days go slow, but the weeks go fast. In the interest of pure honesty, I have had plenty of time in the last few weeks to write a post. Besides reading and writing, I’ve also done a lot of TV-watching. But again, there’s that trap of “I’m doing something more interesting this weekend, I’ll hold off on a post.” Yet now that the term is over and I’m sitting on a train from Oslo to Bergen for four more hours, there are no excuses. Thus, my last post of my first term in Oxford commences! Continue reading

Lessons Learned Overseas

 

On the (fragment of) Hogwarts Bridge set-piece used in the movies!
On the (fragment of) Hogwarts Bridge set-piece used in the movies!

Yesterday, I returned from a 10-day family vacation to London and Paris and have finally came back with a keener understanding of what constitutes a good vacation for me. I surprisingly returned without major jet-lag and am enjoying some down time. Though the trip had ups and downs, I learned so much about traveling and even about what I want my life to be like for the next few years. WARNING: a rather lengthy, rambling, personal disclosure follows. Continue reading