July 30, 2011

Hoachin' Edinburgh

"Hoachin'" is apparently an old Scottish word for "very busy," and what a very busy bee I've been. To anyone reading, sorry it's taken me so long to update! I'll use what pictures I've taken so far to recount as best I can all the fun I've been having these past three days.

First off, our flat is BEAUTIFUL. White everything -- bedding, walls, bathrooms -- and loads of windows, giving the whole place a bright, warm feeling. It's sort of like a really cozy hospital, if that isn't a complete oxymoron. It's too large to call quaint and too picturesque to called sprawling. So I think spacious and quirky-sweet is a good sum-up.

Here's the main eating area -- a great deal dimmer than the rest of the flat, but lovely with the lights on.

 Vertigo-inducing stairs...

 Our sitting room:



 and views from the flat.



One of my classmates described Scotland as "wonderfully efficient" in general. I think that's a pretty good reasoning. I can't quite explain how/why everything here is so much more adorable. I feel like that's probably a kind of cliche sort of thing to say about Britain, but really...it's so marvelous how well-preserved their history is, and the various aesthetics that have remained as a result. There is some really gorgeous architecture going on here...








and beside that, some overall adorable bits:



Unicorns and English and Scotland. It's like my version of Hogwarts.

This is exactly the sort of dog you'd expect to see in the window of a Scottish whiskey shop.

KILLER shoes.




Speaking of wee bites...

 ...I've found heaven.
Twice.


Okay, maybe three times.
This drink menu was posted outside at the cafe J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter books in, The Elephant House. I didn't go inside on our first journey through Old Town, but I intend to go back a get "Fleur's Delight." I have this theory that, since no other drinks or nibbles listed on the menu were named after anything related to Harry Potter, this must be where Rowling drew her inspiration for her fiery French veela... eh?



Here is, of course, the castle which inspired Hogwarts:



Beyond the world of Harry Potter I have been completely nerding out over everything else in Edinburgh, as can be gathered from the sole facial expression I seem to be able to effect in this city:




The festival has already turned Edinburgh into an anthill. People really do come from everywhere, and it's always fun to identify the Americans, since we stick out like sad, sad fashion police victims. And it is true that we are very loud. At least in groups.

So far, our days have been spent exploring, window shopping, munching, and, in Joey Shaw's case, busking:


There are interesting sights to see everywhere.







Tomorrow we leave for a nearby loch tour and lecture, and we've already had our first living-room class. Our tickets were distributed -- 23 shows lined up already, and more to come!!! -- and on the 4th I'm already set to see 3 of them. I am pumped to see some good (and questionably good) theatre....

Lots of love,
R.



July 25, 2011

Pack Rat

The time has come!
The moment has arrived!
I can pack without feeling completely ridiculous!

If there's one thing I know about myself and packing, it's that I quite literally have to set aside an entire day to do it. This is due to the fact that when I go through my things, I like them to be "just so" (even if "just so" = totally, unreasonably messy -- though that is not often the case) AND because I become terribly sidetracked.

This is of course, for better or worse.

The for-better part includes DIY projects with old throw-aways, like this headband I made from a the lace top of some old Vic Sec panties:


also possibly a strange role-play accessory? haha, sorry...


and these luggage tags from old gift cards:



The for-worse part? Well...


making fun of hipsters:

what i wore to bed.
plus 3 accessories: Insta-hipster!


and pretending I'm Oliver Twist, I guess.




But in the end it all came together. I managed to reign my focus enough to stuff everything into my two bags -- one 40 lb You-talkin'-ta-ME?! suitcase and one slightly-more-than-modest-sized backpack, weighing almost 20 lbs. Yipes! It's going to be one hell of a journey between here and school two months from now, but this is what travel's all about right? Regretting how much you packed... hoping you'll magically learn to make things levitate...

I'm sure going to miss things here in my gloomy come-to-be-known-as home. It was bittersweet saying goodbye to all my friends. I tried to treat it like I'd be seeing them day after next, but the tight hugs said differently.

Every once in a while I look around my room and think "all this stuff is going to be gone tomorrow, and then I'm going to be gone, and I'm not going to be back for 5 whole months." What?! Like, how did this happen? Part of me is thrilled that my dream since about age 11 is finally coming true. Another part of me is in total shock from the fact that it actually could happen -- that in mere days I will be stepping foot on British ground.

Lord, I hope they like me.



Also, found this:

London, '08

What a full-of-dreams babyface!
Whatever happens, I owe it to her to have the time of my life on this return-adventure. 

"I hear that train a-comin'... it's rollin' round the bend..."
-R

July 22, 2011

Chicken Soup with Rice

I don't very often get sick, and when I do, I'm the worst patient. My least favorite thing in the world is staying still when I want to be moving, and that's all there is to being sick. It's been nice watching movies and taking naps, but all I want to do right now is enjoy my day off work and the lovely weather that's unusually accompanying it.

I watched "Mrs. Doubtfire" for the first time in years, and it made me feel like a kid again, staying home from school with a fever. Perhaps it's only due to my immense guilt complex, but I don't even remember enjoying staying home from school. I was always worried I'd miss out on something. Ballet and soccer practice on the other hand, I had no reservations skipping for the day. I had a tendency of embarrassing myself during extra-cirriculars, and one day off that reality was always welcome in my schedule.

On the bright side of things, being sick made me think of a book I used to read with my mom called "Chicken Soup with Rice." I don't think I've ever actually had chicken soup with rice while sick -- even though after I finished the book I ALWAYS wanted to eat it, sort of like I ALWAYS wanted Pasta after "Strega Nona." Luckily I'm a big girl now and can make my own damn chicken soup with rice, and that's exactly what I've set out to do.

Unfortunately we don't have any chicken broth, and I'm afraid I'll fall over if I try to walk to Trader Joe's -- I'm so exhausted! So, it's become white-rice-with-a-whole-bunch-of-pinches-from-my-roommates'-spice-supply instead. We'll see how it turns out.

In other news, my departure is creeping closer by the minute! I can't believe how lucky I am still, and how positively wonderful this adventure will undoubtedly be. I guess my getting sick is my body's way of prepping me so I get it out of my system before I'm over there. Kinda like my computer crashing (which was fixed by the end of that evening, I'm happy to report!) So excited. So so so excited.

July 20, 2011

American Psycho

Tonight I'm celebrating my American-ness, just so I get it outta my system before I rekindle my love for all things Brit. Appropriately inspired by Christian Bale (AMERICAN Psycho), I spent the last fifteen minutes dancing around in my new oxford shoes drinking a bottle of lime flavoured (< oh, how British!) mineral water with Johnny Cash. Not WITH Johnny Cash (I wish!), but with his lovely voice coming outta my computer. Now I'm going down the street to get some Dick's food for a fast food finale. Rarely do I get this kind of fast food -- it's sort of ridiculous that this is my American send off for myself, buuuuuuuuuuuuut.... !!

Later...


I feel so grateful for having people in my life who DO inspire me. Shamefully, it rarely occurs to me that I have the best friends in the whole world. Half the time I try to convince myself I'm my own person and I don't need anybody -- but that's just not true. The two things that make me happier than anything on this earth (aside from organizing things) are friendship and love. 
Most every person I talked to today made me feel better about myself -- be it about locating my passions, verifying my permission to adventure, sharing my interests, approving my sense of justice, or complimenting my sensitivity. I wish I could properly thank the people who've stuck by my side for so much of my life, but it's hard to find the right words. I truly can't imagine life without you anymore.

To Dick's burgers and Terrence Malick films, to queer study and jumping off docks, to oversea adventures and words that mean I love you.... thank you. I love you too.

July 19, 2011

Woe is me.

So. My beloved Macbook Pro (which I might mention I bought mere months ago as a replacement for my still more beloved black '08 Macbook) has decided it's through with my long days of list making and excursion planning and now won't let me past its gray starter screen.

As you can imagine I'm more than slightly peaky this morning.

I freak out. I'm a freaker-outer by nature. I'm not sure which side of the family it stems from -- probably from both. My maternal relatives are anxious people and my paternal relatives are a little obsessive. Hence, I am an obsessive worrier. I'm trying to remind myself that my experiences are not defined by my technology. That I can print my boarding pass from work and my passport is not digital, thank god. Those are really the only two things I need to leave this country...but I'd sure like the comfort of knowing it's multi accessible. Not to mention be able to contact the people I care about back home. With the best luck this problem will be far behind me in a matter of days. With the worse luck, I will be going to England sans laptop -- or at least sans mine.

Why does technology dictate our lives? Seem to determine our happiness? Become capable of initiating stomach ulcers? Not so far gone are the days when all that mattered was that my hard copy of "Nice Mice: A Story about A Girl and Her Pets" was safe and sound on my beside table (so that I might grab it if there was a fire, of course, as it was a destined best-seller...) There was a time when that extra weight in my back might've been an extra pair of shoes, or a good book, rather than El Laptop: Controller of the Universe.

It's nice that technology has allowed me to have a blog like this one -- to communicate to whatever audience it is I'm communicating to. But is it worth the headaches, the gut-squelching moments of panic, the tears, the red eyes, the stagnant-ass muscle loss, AND the exhaustion?


Just a thought.

July 18, 2011

July C -- better late than never again!





Boy it's been some time! This month my inspirsessions are in radical UK sway -- it's finally here! In one week and a few hours I'll be on the plane to Scotland to begin my fabulous adventures. It's been a great planning process, and, of course, fashion has figured prominently into my planning.... 
Emma Watson's reentered my life as an idol, what with the bittersweet ending of all things Harry. She looks amazing in this ad (as usual), which I'm assuming is for Burberry, and guess who just bought a similar coat merely by happenstance? That'd be this girl. These Dansko oxfords I haven't totally fallen in love with yet (they kinda look like nurse shoes...), but at least they're comfy and can pass the Euro look. I've got DC on the brain, what with Jay kicking some Shakespearean ass there. He has also turned me on to white roses. :) Perhaps as a result of having birds on the brain, I keep having Eurydice flashbacks, and the color aqua's taken a strangely permanent stance in my color palette. It's a happy surprise that I can pull the color off, since my mother hates it. Since I'm only in the lovely "greenhouse" for another week I've become a true minimalist (tightwad?) in the realm of food. Granny Smiths are keepin' me smiling and full of fiber. 

I CAN'T WAIT!!! Next week (if I'm able to keep up with myself) I will actually be able to take inspirsessions off the streets of Edinburgh. BAAAAH!!!

Room finds


Every once in a while I excavate my room...

And I always unearth nostalgic excitements.


Jeans from when I was 10 or so...

Which I totally still fit into! Bam!

Never finished this book....

Worry dolls. These suckers are magical. They solve EVERYTHING.

Quote book.



My only impression of Seattle for so long...

First journal from Mama.

Ideals at 13.


My "totally awesome" back to school hair idea.



MISSED YOU!!

Peace out.