Hello from London, England!!! Sorry for the lack of posting. With the holidays and the last few weeks in the states my life was pretty busy, but I have officially made it through one whole day in the city!!!
This is what I expected, but at the same time it is not what I expected. We haven’t really seen any sights at all because we came straight to our apartments after we got off the plane. Yesterday afternoon and night was mostly devoted to grocery shopping and sleeping. Grocery store shopping was my main expectation where I knew what to expect but was not completely ready for. We had to buy things like hand soap, dish soap, paper towels, and toilette paper, and these are all minor things, but it has taken three shopping trips for basic necessities. I knew I would have to do this one day, but for some reason studying abroad just did not hit me as living on your own. Besides buying food, apartment living is another skill that I will have to gain entirely! There might already be something wrong with our toilet, you have to turn a switch to make an electric plug work, and we are still figuring out how to work the heater. I wish that the program packets had come with an instruction manual for us to use. It would have saved us time and we would not have almost froze last night! Also there are a few more kitchen appliances that we need. Well not even appliances, more like a non stick pan and a cutting board. I also need to become a pro at budgeting. I need to sit down and start planning out all of my spending for food and trips. My cash that I came with is going fast and I don’t want to get any more out until next month. Yes, it is mostly because I bought a blow dryer here so I wouldn’t ruin mine and because we needed toilet paper and such (I am not just spending it on silly things), but I do need to figure out a weekly plan to start to live by.
Other than grocery store shopping and figuring out our apartment the last day, this morning and afternoon all of the students in the program had orientation which was how you could imagine it: the basics in safety, getting around town, and culture shock. We had an hour break for lunch and a small group of us went down a few blocks to Pret and it was so good! They mostly have sandwiches and salads and I got a tomato mozzarella sandwich. It was so fresh and was just what I needed after a long morning of walking, climbing stairs, lots and lots of stairs, and hours of meetings. I forgot how many stairs there are in London!!! There are stairs in the apartment, we are on the 2nd floor (technically 3, but over here the first floor is called the ground floor), in the tube stations (the subway), and the school, our classes are on the 3rd level (but it is really 4). Everyone in my program keeps saying how we will all be coming back home with fantastic legs!!!
Tomorrow we have a big bus tour before classes start on Monday! Hopefully then I will have some pictures for you all, I just haven’t really had time to go take pictures and we are not around anything that I NEED to take a picture of!