Friday, September 28, 2012

Prior Park: We're a Family

Our housing allocation is determined by our program ASE in houses or flats around Bath. With 40+ students in the program, the staff have the task of matching fellow students with each other based on schedules, roommate preferences, and other things. I am privileged to live with my friends Eleanor from SMC, Abby, Hannah, Megan, Andrew, and Gabe! We all get along really well so much that we've become a family at Prior Park. We even have a few furry friends that visit!

Gabe, Eleanor, Me, Abby, Meghan, and Hannah! (missing: Andrew)

Trying to hypnotise cat #1

Cat #2 is really friendly!

We've had outings with pictures, family dinners, and movie nights - we couldn't ask for a better house! Can't wait for more adventures with my friends :)

Keep on the look out for more updates!
Sending all my love to my family at home and SMC, 
Katelyn :)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Ashmolean: An Art and Archaelogist Lover's Dream

Continuing with Being a UNIV Student for a Week: Part Three! This week in Oxford we had the option to go to the Ashmolean Museum of Art & Archaeology - filled with four floors of art and artifacts ranging from Ancient Rome, Egypt, Byzantium, and more. 

Here are some of my favorite pieces from the massive collection - I spent two hours there but could've spent so much more! 

Demonstrating the wear and tear of touch.
The Messiah Stradivarius - never been played in it's 300 years of existence!
The most adorable painting of a dog that I can't remember the name or painter...FAIL.
The Annunciation - saw a pic from my Medieval Europe class!
Turner's Oxford High Street - where I was staying for the week

I have loads and loads of more pictures - I'm just finding out a way to make them accessible to my readers! If you're interested in more, leave a comment so I know my efforts won't go to waste :)

Thanks for keeping up with all the parts! Check out one and two and keep posted for the fourth and final segment of my trip to Oxford. 
Wishing you the very best, 
Katelyn :)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Being a UNIV Student for a Week: Part 2

I'm picking up where Part One left off on Monday - first day of classes in Oxford and a tour of the Library. The UNIV library is actually quite small but full of character. I even got to take out a few books for class - I wish I could've taken out books for pleasure reading. I made many a trip there for reading purposes.

So many books!

Being studious in UNIV.

My friend Abby the thinker.
Later on we went to a talk by tutor Dr. Leslie Mitchell who is teaching Modern British Political History called "Bloody Oxford". A bit similar to the talk we had on Saturday, but very entertaining. He made it sound like story-telling and I wish I was in one of his classes! I love when a professor makes it fun to learn so it doesn't actually seem like you're learning. 

Tuesday was shopping, class, and pub crawl! We made it to four pubs: The Lamb and Flag, White Horse, The King's Arms, and The Turf Tavern. The Lamb and Flag was my favorite ambiance wise because it looked like a classy den set-up with wood accents. I also attempted a local ale or beer at each location - I wanted to make it unique!


A fun night was had by all!

On Wednesday I presented for my Women, Society, and Culture of the 18th century on writers' opinions on women's education. Unfortunately right after my presentation, I became sick and was confined to my bed for the rest of the day. This meant I had to miss the tour of Christ Church where the grand staircase that was in Harry Potter! Sad face. I did get a picture of the courtyard on Sunday going to the Anglican service though!

Does this courtyard look familiar?
This is only part two of the adventure! Be sure to check back for sequels :)

Friday, September 21, 2012

Being a UNIV Student for a Week: Part 1

Oh hello UNIV!
I've just returned to Bath after a week long excursion to Oxford with my program. We were able to stay and study at University College for the week and it felt pretty special. Not many can say that they've studied there but now I can! Of course I had to load up on UNIV apparel and souvenirs for my friends and family...maybe a little too much...

Anywho - we arrived on Saturday to move into our singles - a change from doubles in our home on Prior Park - which I realize I need to create a blog post about! Before I leave I promise. 
My single: Complete with a sink, mini-fridge and window seat!

We had a talk from tutor Dr. Mike Nicholson, a fellow and praelector in Russian at Oxford. He teaches Ghosts and the Gothic for ASE and had quite a lot to share about the history of the college. It was fascinating to learn about the place we were staying and it's major historical events. 

Later that evening we had the option to go down to the UNIV bar and have a disco! That basically meant we could socialize with one another with a DJ and bar - the drinks were cheaper than most places around so it helped our money go further.

Sunday we had the option of going to a Anglican service in the Christ Church Cathedral. It was interesting because I'd never been to another religious service other than Mass at Saint Mike's or my home parish. We went to the Morning Prayer service where it consisted of specific prayers and lessons (or readings) sung by the boys' choir or the ministers. Some parts were easy to follow because parts of the Anglican Church are similar to the Catholic Church. I won't give you a history lesson, but check out this website for more info.

Another event we went to on Sunday was PUNTING! If you think of gondolas in Venice, that's basically what punting is. We had the option to do it ourselves. While I didn't partake, I took LOADS of pictures: here are just a few. Luckily, no one in our group became members of the Mermaid Club! 
Trying to act like we know what we're doing...

Getting up close and personal with the ducks
This is only part one of my adventure in Oxford, and there will shortly be more posts to sum up the week! Keep looking for those.

Hope everything is well in your neck of the woods!
Katelyn :)

Monday, September 10, 2012

...Winter is Coming: Bath Week 3

So the weather is predicted to be slightly less gorgeous than it has been the past week here in Bath. In the weather, I enjoyed a class trip to Dyrham Park with my Women, Society, and Culture in the 18th Century course. It was such a beautiful day with beautiful sites and I was reminded of how awesome nature is. 
Dyrham Park
Being enraptured by the universe, nbd.
Living directly outside of a city is a bit different from my usual residence at One Winooski Park - where I could just look out my window and see the glorious foliage and mountains across the street. It's going to be my goal to take a walk in the countryside more frequently than I expected. 
Also - my program, Advanced Studies in England (ASE), is sponsoring a hike trip to Wales as well as a trip to the Cotswolds. Not sure about hiking, but hey, this trip is all about getting outside my comfort zone and experiencing things that I would have never dreamed of doing. See diagram A.
Diagram A

Bath is certainly presenting a challenge in ways I would have never imagined - some good, some frustrating, but definitely capable to be handled. I am looking forward to getting more involved in the community as long as it fits into my studies - remember, going to a program called ADVANCED STUDIES in England means that you'll be studying. A LOT. The amount of reading I have is a little unnerving but understandable considering I only have class once a week. I just have to plan to make ample time for studying, food shopping, house chores, and socializing. 

In relation, just a tidbit of awesomeness this week:
On Monday, on top of the Bath Abbey tour, my accompanying 'older' tour guide named Barry commented on the weather saying: "We didn't have much of a summer, but as you can tell...winter is coming." For those of you who don't know this phrase, I suggest you read George Martin's Game of Thrones and then watch the HBO series. And don't worry, I'll do a post on my adventures in Bath Abbey - to be continued!

Hopefully later this week I'll post again about what else is new in my nomadic travels - especially since we'll be traveling as a program to University College Oxford on Saturday for a week of courses there! EXCITING! 

Feel free to comment on places I should travel to, ask me questions about life in Bath, or anything else! 
As always, sending my love stateside, 
Katelyn :) 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

It's the Bath Water!

My first week in Bath has come and gone. After some crazy travels, I have moved into my house on Prior Park with 6 other housemates. We took on a week of orientation about academics, activities, and Bath culture and shopping. We've been on a lot tours around the area and I'm getting used to the city and all that's in it. It reminds me a lot of Burlington actually! Just a tad bigger and busier.

ASE Headquarters - Nelson House

A view of Prior Park from the top of Bath Abbey

Bath Abbey at night

Prior Park in front of Stonehenge!

Salisbury Cathedral

Lacock Abbey - look familiar?
These have so far been my adventures in Bath - my classes started this week and my internship as well. We'll see how the semester goes...fingers crossed! 
Keep an eye on my blog for updates from across the pond.
Sending well-wishes to my parents on their anniversary, 
Katelyn :)