Monday, February 15, 2010
"Knifoons" among other things
Hello again to all my faithful readers. Much has happened, of course, since I blogged last. : ) I was unable to attend the walk that I told you about that Sunday, because I became sick the night before. My throat started hurting a few days before Sunday and just grew steadily worse. Saturday the 6th Laurine and I successfully made it up the hill to Pen Dinas where the Duke of Wellington’s monument was standing proud and strong. According to Wikipedia the 1st Duke of Wellington was Arthur Wellesley, who was a leading military and political figure of the nineteenth century for the British Army. So pretty much he’s a big deal. They name their rubber work boot after him by calling the “wellies” or something of that nature. Ha ha! On our way down from the hill I was able to have my closest encounter yet with some sheep. They made no response when I “baaaa”ed at them but then I made kissing noise at them and several of them looked intently in my direction. It was quite funny and interesting.
That evening a few of my fellow Americans and I decided to experience our first BIG rugby match in a pub. I still don’t quite understand the sport but I like it because there were NO, zip, zero, commercials throughout the entire 1.5 hr match! The game was quite dramatic though because it was England vs. Wales. There was a fair mix of both in the pub we were in. I had a friend telling me earlier that he noticed that whenever there was an individual blatantly sporting a jersey for England they were in groups. As if they would be mobbed or something if they were walking alone.
After the rugby match, whom England won 30-17, I could really tell I was starting to get sick. Unfortunately I wasn’t being all that careful about where I was placing my head, and had been laying on my friend’s pillow. Wouldn’t you know she ended up getting sick a few days later, as did my other friend. Though he thought it would be funny to make a facebook group out of it, because he just does that sort of thing. So there is currently a group on facebook called “Kelli Kuehnert is an illness spreading machine”. There are four current members including me. Only one of them has yet to catch the virus. :S What can I say? They are still talking to me so they must not hate me all that much.
Second week of classes were swell. God has really helped me keep my focus and overcome the cold quickly. I am enjoying the majority of my classes. Two of my lectures are taught by the same Professor who is, unfortunately, rather slow speaking and slightly monotone. One aspect of this school that I am particularly fond of is the time of socializing in between classes. There is a lounge area filled with both Professors and students sipping on tea and coffee and munching on biscuits and cakes (not stereotypical at all ;)). I just LOVE the atmosphere of being able to converse with the Professors in such an informal manner. It is how a University should be.
Now for my section of new interesting words and phrases that I have learned. There is an interesting eating utensil that they have here than can not be found in America. You are familiar with the “spork” I assume, which is a spoon and a fork combined. Well here they have chosen to combine and a spoon and a knife, which I like to call a “knifoon” : )…It’s not the most effective tool I’ve used to say the least. I’ve used it on several occasions to eat cereal, and have found it to be quite challenging. The spoon portion of the knifoon isn’t very wide so you have to scoop the food very carefully so it makes it to the mouth. LOL! It’s quite a task.
I was in a conversation with a girl in one of my classes and she was telling how she dated a “Yankee” once. It caught my interest so I asked her why she specifically called him a “Yankee” and not a “Confederate” ;). She went on to explain that it is pretty much like how Americans call British people “Brits”. I can’t say I have ever used the term, but have heard it none the less. In the same class my professor made a rather clever comment that everyone but me seemed to laugh at. That was basically for the fact that he said it really fast, but he mentioned something about “posh girls”, which I did catch. Apparently it’s another term for girls who are in the middle class. His phrase was a long the lines of “horses are an unnecessary entertainment for posh girls”. It would make a lot more sense if you had been in the discussion and knew the context.
Later on that week Laurine (my friend from France) and I had quite an entertaining conversation with her trying to teach me how to properly count in French. I’m having the most trouble with the number four which is quarte. To pronounce it properly it has a strange throat clearing noise that you have to make at just the right moment which sounds ridiculous when I say it. I asked her what her favorite word in French was. Surprisingly it didn’t take her long to mutter “pamplemousse”, which is “grapefruit”. That word I seem to do ok at pronouncing.
Valentine’s Day was just another day for the most part. However, that evening I did a little bit of rock skipping and enjoyed a group dinner with several international students. We had people from Czech Republic, Moldova, England, India, Pittsburgh, Montana, Alabama, and Indiana! It was an excellent meal for a group of college students, and had wonderful conversations. Probably one of the most memorable Valentine’s days I’ve ever had.
Today I moved from my residence of Panycelyn to Penbryn, which is just up the hill. There are several reasons which I won’t go into, but I think I will like it up here. My hall mates are very friendly and much noisier than I care for but you can’t get everything you want. With moving a change of address is in need. So please refrain from using the old one please you intend to send me anything, though I hope you won’t spend the money on me.
Till next time have a wonderful day!