Sunday, 10 February 2008

nouveau nouveau

It's an incredibly interesting idea to be in a new place seeing new things like art, monuments, and churches, many of which are world famous. I think I expected each event to be life-changing in some sort of way, but I have found that although intriguing, the collective events in retrospect are
what make the experience. Either way, I know I will never forget this trip.

On friday, my friend from San Diego, Lauren and I went around London looking for artwork by this anonymous artist named Banksy. He does graffiti stencils which are usually either painted over or cut out of the wall to be sold by the town for as much as 400,000 pounds. That's almost 800,000 dollars. I've heard that Brad and Angelina bought one. Anyway, most of his work is mocking the police, or the government, or artists driven by money. He is anonymous, so he doesn't make anything on what he does. Some of his spray-paintings are illusions, like a seeming hole in a brick wall with a blue sky and a field. So, we found three of them that were still up, which was very exciting!

We also visited St. Paul's Cathedral and got a glimpse of the inside, but decided to wait for when Max visits to pay and get a tour, since it looks amazing. I'm including a photo of the revolving door which wrote, "This is none other than the House of God-This is the gate of Heaven."

Later, we went to see a band called the Rocket Summer for free because lauren is family friends with the lead singer, Bryce Avary, so we were on the guest list. We talked to him for a long time and he was a pretty nice guy. We also got to meet the guy who started the organization, To Write Love on Her Arms, Jamie Tworkowski. To write love on her arms is a, organization that helps people who are battling depression, self mutilation, and addiction ( There is a story about it printed on the inside of all the shirts. I have a shirt and a sweatshirt, so I was ecstatic that I got to meet the guy who wrote the story! Lauren and I met and made friends with with Jamie and we talked for probably a half hour-45 minutes. After that, he gave us his number and email.

Saturday, the study abroad group went to Oxford. We got to see Oxford University and Christ's College, where Harry Potter was filmed. We also went to "The Eagle and The Child," the pub where C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkein used to meet and talk.

Monday, 4 February 2008

I've seen your flag on the Marble Arch...

So, I have been living here in England for 2 weeks now today. It has been very exciting, and I have of course gone to London and seen the sites that everyone knows about: Big Ben (St. Stephen's Tower), Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, the London Eye (which we actually rode), blah blah blah. The pubs around Kingston are fun, and I actually have liked them better than the ones in London. Anyway, it has been interesting adjusting. I went grocery shopping today and bought French brie cheese, which did not taste the same as it did at home. I did, however, try a crumpet for the first time and liked it very much. I went to the Tate Modern yesterday and it was absolutely fantastic. Seeing Monet's Waterlilies was seriously like a dream come true. I was in awe of his vision and talent. It was great to see works that I learned about in classes at home by artists such is Lichtenstein, Ernst, Mondrian, and many many more. My classes are turning out to be very interesting, also. I really like the material.

Anyway, that's enough for now.
Oh, and the first picture is of the Marble Arch, which I stumbled upon accidentally, but was in awe of.
Au revoir.