I am finally settling in here in Swansea, and people have even started asking me questions! I usually don't know the answer but at least I look like I do. The last week has been awesome. Also, click on the hyperlinks in this post to have a quick education of the the sites I've visited. Here is what's happened since we last hung out:
Last Saturday, our course included a field trip to Bath where we toured the Roman Baths, had a peak in the Bath Abbey, strolled around town and saw The Circus and the Royal Crescent, almost didn't notice Bath's War Memorial, and had a nice walk through the Royal Victoria Park (which Queen Victoria established when she was only 11 years old). Of course, there are also lots of Jane Austen attractions in Bath - including pedestrians in period dress just because -but we only had one day! There are quite a few smaller and more quirky museums that I plan to visit the next time I go to Bath, which is hopefully soon because it's just a day's journey.
While my classmates headed back from Bath on Saturday afternoon, I caught a train to Warminster to stay with some wonderful people - Peter and Catherine- that my dad became friends with while he was in the Army. If I could insert a tip for any fellow military brats thinking about traveling or studying abroad: get names from your parents. Chances are they know someone in the country your going which means not only free lodging and food, but getting to see your destination from a local's perspective.
The couple I stayed with were so gracious and kind and made me feel right at home. We had a barbecue on Saturday night and watched the BBC Proms. On Sunday morning, they thought I would like to see Stonehenge (and of course I said they were right), so Peter kindly drove me around the English country side where we also walked through a park and saw the house of The Lord of Longleat. After a delicious lunch and before heading to the train station, some friends of Catherine's came over to pick apples from their tree. This couple makes jam and chutneys to sell as a fundraiser for the hospice where Catherine works. We had some homemade scones and a variety of jams (with clotted cream of course) and tea. I feel I partook in a British Sunday afternoon in the most traditional way I could.
After only a couple train delays and one missed connection, I arrived back in Swansea on Sunday night. The next two days were just lecture days for my pre-session course - pretty boring stuff unless you love British history. On Wednesday, I got to move to my flat where I will be living for the rest of the term. Its a good size room for one person, and I share two bathrooms and a kitchen with seven other people. As of right now, there are two other American girls already there that are also in my class, and today the rest start moving in! I am excited to meet my flatmates!
Yesterday was another lecture day for class and today is the last lecture day, and arrivals weekends starts this morning. Next week begins Freshers week, which is rumored to be pretty crazy. Wish me luck!
Below are pictures from the last week, enjoy!