Sunday, June 28, 2015

Final Formal

I'm really sad I don't have any photos from this formal. But it was a really great time but also a really sad time. The president of St. Anne's gave a speech and I literally almost cried about it. Right there at the table. I couldn't stay up very late after this either because I had to catch a train to Cardiff in the morning to say goodbye to my friends there !! We also had a photo shoot planned, so more to come on that!

Starting the Goodbye Process

These next few posts are going to be a bit of flash backs, I didn't have a lot of time to complete them given the time crunch to see all of my friends and then pack but this is generally how it went. after that formal I had two more weeks until we finally left. So after doing a bit of packing I decided to go and visit  eloise again where we played Splatoon and saw Jurassic world. We also played mini golf....

I decided it would be a good idea to crawl through the hole during mini golf.... and It was we had a cheeky time. Speaking of cheeky! I finally discovered what a cheeky Nandos was and let me tell you it was right fun! Nandos is also delicious. I mean, for what you pay and what you get that is. It's kind of like a classy KFC.

Anyways so this time with Eloise went from two days to five days ( just as it had last time considering her parents love me and didn't want me to leave ). To be fair I didn't want to leave either. It would be the last time I got to see Eloise before leaving for America. And she's going to study in Japan for a year so that's even more unfortunate. The time differences are going to be crazy!

After a great five days we finally had to say goodbye at the train station and it felt very much like one of those old movies where one of the two people saying goodbye runs down the platform waving a handkerchief while the other waves from the train window. Unfortunately, she couldn't go down  to the platform with me so it kind of put a damper on our plans.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Biology Formal: The Saddest Formal :(

The departure date is getting nearer and nearer and It's making me very sad. In fact since two of my MCM friends have offered their houses to stay for as long as I want I may extend my stay and just not get on the flight home that I've already paid for...but I think it would be worth it.

It's too soon to say goodbye just yet.

But that isn't what I want to focus on right now. This entry is about the Biology Formal we had last night. This dinner is a Formal thrown by Martin (The head Biology Tutor at St. Anne's) where all the Bio students in college, from freshers up to finalists, and other tutors get together to have a lovely three course meal which is served to you.

Plus you get to dress up!!!

I did not manage to take pictures of the food this time around, but the presentation is always spot on. I wasn't expecting it to be as emotional as it was but when Martin pulled out his speech I was about to cry. He had something brilliant to say about everyone, including Reem and I.

I can't remember if I've ever spoken about Martin on this blog before but he is a character, one of a kind, there is no one else like him in the entirety of Oxford or the world for that matter. He's a free spirit with a huge heart and I'm going to miss him dearly.

Halfway through his speech, however, he was interrupted by another Biologist who he addressed in his speech as his "Designated drinking buddy, it says so in her contract." She had a few words to say about Martin herself, and in the end pulled out a folder with six new species she had discovered during her research. Her gift to him for being so remarkable was that she was going to let him pick one of the species and name it after him.

It was one of the most amazing things I've ever gotten to witness.

Right after, the finalists presented their gifts to Martin as well. They gave him a nice card, a book with the title "Save Water and Drink Wine', a nice bottle of port, and finally a water colour painting one of the finalists had done of an aphid. It's really only funny if you know Martin personally, he's obsessed with aphids.

After the gifting was over he went on with his speech until finally he came to Reem and I. I nearly cried. All of what he said, he had told Reem and I personally during one of our get together in his office. But never had he said anything in front of anyone else.

A few years back Martin had issues with a Biology visiting student and it did not end well. Not that it was a personal conflict with them but it was that they were very hard to get along/compromise with in the area of what she wanted out of the program/what her school wanted. And apparently, it was bad enough for him to never want to take on any more visiting students again. However, this year, Alex Binns somehow convinced him to try again and here Reem and I are. In his speech he raved about how happy he was to have made this decision, and that we were wonderful, fun to be around, intelligent, and all around amazing students. He also kept making sure we were staying a bit after our time here ended because he did not want to say goodbye just yet. Along with this he kept pestering us to make sure we felt as though we were part of the family. Because to Martin, the biologists of St. Anne's are just one big family, and because we are visiting students and very new to Oxford with such a short time to spend here, he wanted to ensure that we REALLY did feel as though we belonged.

Our answer was a very enthusiastic "OF COURSE WE FEEL LIKE PART OF THE FAMILY MARTIN!!!" And quite honestly this is no lie.

Once everyone had finished eating we returned to the MCR (which is a really nice room for graduate students to go when they want to do work or to relax, but Martin worked his magic and always holds his gatherings in there.)

I got to get a closer look at the new species, and discuss how she'd discovered them and what she was thinking about naming them, it was amazing!!! I never dreamed I'd ever get to see new species, much less speak to the person who'd discovered them! It's a Biologists dream to be quite honest.

Also, as I stated, Martin is all about having a good time --- and since this was a celebration...well that meant the famous 'cabinet' had to be opened....and so it was....
The Cabinet!
Reem, Millie, Allison and I having a good time and taking some selfies!

Needless to say it was a really fun and amazing night. From that point on it was all drinking and socializing and having the time of our lives!

Monday, June 1, 2015

London MCM 2015 !!!!

It's been a week since the con and I miss it so much!!! I made so many friends who I"m working on visiting before I go! Right now I'm actually staying with my friend Eloise!

Here's a picture of us.

 On the left is Eloise and on the right is my friend Roth who let me stay with her at the con! They're both amazing and we had such a great time cosplaying gravity falls. I went as Mabel, Eloise went as Wendy, and Roth was Bill.

Here's a picture of some of our Gravity Falls group from Sunday, Eloise couldn't be there but I met one of my favorite artists from Tumblr, Finch! She's the Wendy in this picture. Connor, who is on my left, Oscar who is giving me the kiss on my left, and Barry who is hugging Oscar. Barry and Oscar are huge dorks who befriended me really quickly, I'm going to miss them!!!! Which is why, as I said, I'm trying to see them all before I leave.

However I am trying to change my plane ticket so I can attend another con in July with Oscar, Barry, and Eloise.

Here is another picture of my second costume which I made from scratch!

That's James on the left as Wirt, I'm in the middle as Greg, and someone I've forgotten as Beatrice we're all cosplaying characters from Over the GardenWall.

This was honestly one of my favorite times of this year, I made so many friends, all of which were just as nerdy and loved cartoons just as much as me. I'm so sad I din't get to go to London MCM October where I could have met them sooner! But at least I have something to look froward to next time I visit.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

So much to look forward to!

Now that exams are done I have a bit more to talk about and time to do it! We've now entered the blissful trinity term! Why is it so blissful?! Because we get to lounge about on the grass! For the entire year we've faced signs that say  'Please Do Not Walk on the Grass !' but now they are gone and soon there will be garden parties and people lying about doing work. I can't wait!

That is as soon as the weather get's better...It's been a bit blustery recently!

I've got a lot to look forward to this week! Tomorrow I have a tutorial in psychology! Since Trinity term for Biology students here means working mostly on their research there isn't much for us to visiting students to do bio wise. So Martin (our head tutor) lined up some topics for my partner Reem and I to do that we thought were interesting. This week is Psychology where we will be doing a presentation on ADHD!

But after that.....there is the first formal of the term! Formal are literally one of my favorite things here, getting served your food the food and your wine poured for you makes you feel like royalty! There are also five this term and you bet your bottom dollar i'm going to try and go to all of them!

But an even that is going to make me feel even more like royalty is St. Hilda's Ball which is happening this Saturday! Here's a preview of me without my mask - and I won't be wearing the tiara! But that's my dress and jewelry! I'm so excited! I've always wanted to go to a masquerade!

But that's really all I have to say for now! I'll have more updates from the formal, ball, and comic convention I plan on going to in a few weeks as they happen!!!

This term looks so promising!!!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Update and Exams

Hey guys,

So I've been super busy traveling (Which I'll make a few posts about in about a week or so) I have exams next week and they're kicking my butt! I much prefer the way the states has have their exams. Where we're tested every three or so weeks on the material we've learned followed by a final. Then you have drive all year to study. I didn't realize just how much information I had to learn just for this one big exam until now, when it's kind of too late.

I'll do my best though! I don't actually believe this part of my required course work and by that my grade given the fact that this was an option we chose to take and not a requirement by our tutor. Martin has been an angel helping us through the year and I'm really happy he was our personal tutor at St. Anne's.

In other news, I can quickly write about London MCM. London MCM is a Comic Convention in London (Obviously.) in late May. It's a pretty big convention and I'm really excited to show off the costumes I've been making while here! Some of the friends I've made while hre are going with me as well so it will be a whole group of us!

So far I've only finished one. But everything is handmade except the sweater base, the socks, and shoes. The skirt and shooting star were self sewn! And I made the pattern for the skirt all by myself!

I'll be going one of the three days as Mabel from Gravity Falls.

Anyways! I better get back to studying, Just an update that I am alive barely and well....(after two weeks of sickness).

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Hoggy Hoggy Hogwarts !!!!

This isn't much about my academic experience at Oxford but it is worthy to note that I have been officially adopted into a society here. During Freshers week ( Where you go around and collect about a million trees worth of paper from all the different societies who want you to join them ) the Harry Potter society caught my eye. Of course, as a huge fan and being the brightest witch of my age, I decided to join. Immediately they welcomed me in. By the end of Michaelmus term I had gained a position on the Committee as Artiste!

I'm involved with all the meetings, and decisions, and also planning crafts events! It's a really great experience and the fact that they were okay with me only being here for a year was great.

Anyways we took a trip to Leavesden Studios - or in common terms. The Harry Potter Studios tour. It was amazing. I literally teared up.

But most importantly - I learned to duel!

Pretty cool right?! The gift shop was even cooler - though my wallet doesn't seem to think so...
My next entry will probably be in a few days because we ( My friends Reem, Brian, Steven, and Bernard ) leave for Greece! I'm super excited!!!

But I can't believe Hilary term is already coming to an end.

I'm just going to choose to ignore that for now....

As far as I'm concerned this year will never end!!