Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Leaving the Castle... for now!

It's a beautiful place I'm leaving, and it's been a beautiful couple of days with lots of sunshine and awesomeness. I'll miss the upper years, and I'll miss my friend Jessica who isn't coming back next term. Here are some awesome pictures of the Castle and gardens recently. 

Also, this will be my last post until January!

In December, as most of y'all know, I'm travelling around Europe!

Dec 12 - 16: Barcelona
Dec 16 - 19: Rome
Dec 19 - 23: Budapest
Dec 23 - 26: Munich
Dec 26 - 30: Amsterdam
Dec 30 - 31: London
Dec 31 - Jan 3rd: Glasgow

and back to the Castle for Winter Term in the new year!

Hostels and new food and interacting with other travellers/locals. I'm excited and kind of scared and not really prepared for this, but I'm ready!

You know, first term of university is kind of strange. Everyone is new and for me, everything really from the campus to the country to the continent even is new... It's definitely been an experience and I've loved a lot of it. I've appreciated the struggles because they've shown me what I truly value and the areas I need to grow.

This backpacking trip is something I've wanted for so long, and I'm terrified and excited and I don't even know. It's something I've dreamed of for so long, and it's actually happening. Wow. Wow.

I'll try to keep in contact but wifi is limited in hostels. I promise to write amazing blog posts in January! If I like you too much, you'll probably get a souvenir or something too.

All the best, and HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Lots of love!

Thursday, 5 December 2013

End of Term Celebration!

First term at BISC is done. Weird. So so so so so ridiculous how quickly the past three months have gone by. To be completely honest, I know this blog makes my life to be lovely and awesome and travel-filled... but it hasn't been an easy ride. Transitioning to university academics was odd; I'm not doing nearly as well as I want to be. I am seeing much of Europe, but I'm also the least involved I've ever been - because the system of extracurriculars at the Castle are different than I'm used to.

Here's a quick breakdown of pros and cons of my first term:


  • I study at a castle.... 
  • This is my first time in Europe, and I've really loved the UK and everywhere else I've visited
  • Flights from London to elsewhere are super cheap! 
  • There are only 130 people on campus
  • I know basically everyone on campus
  • My professors know me by name
  • No one is super intense about academics... 
  • I have field trips
  • I had a weeklong midterm trip to Scotland/North England
  • We get cool things like free mulled wine in the Pub, and dances in the Ballroo
  • Drinking age is 18, and really, the English Pub scene is pretty awesome

  • The Castle is located in the MIDDLE OF NOWHERE
  • The isolation is actually ridiculous
  • There are limited opportunities to leave campus without paying for a cab
  • Cabs are expensive
  • The UK is expensive! Pounds are almost double Canadian dollars, but the pure numbers look almost the same! 
  • Getting to London is quite the hassle... Cab out of campus to the train station, and back...
  • No one really studies too much... or cares too much... I'm used to all the IB super overachieving keener types...
  • So I don't really study (things to work on for next term, I promise! Better grades!!!)
  • I've lived in England for 3 months, and I don't really have good British friends
  • I barely ever talk to British people
  • There are ONLY 130 people on campus
  • Basically this tumblr: http://whatshouldwecallmebisc.tumblr.com/

Okay, and here are some pictures of our End of Term celebration we had last Friday, before the rush of exam period... 

Also, my camera has this weird watercolour function. It kind of makes us look cool, but I wanted a normal picture!

Prepping for our Term photo!

Musical performances, including the Executive Director (Bruce Stanley) on the right and a professor (not red coat).

Free Mulled Wine and End of Term slideshow in the Headless Drummer Pub!

Disco Dance in the Ballroom!

And an obligatory selfie, to end it all off.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE! Good luck with exams if you aren't finished yet (basically everyone...).

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Awesome Field Studies this term!

POLS100 had a field study to tour the British Parliament Buildings. They weren't in session because it was a weekend (boo!) but it was still beautiful and I got the iconic pictures that are basically featured in 90% of London postcards. 

They won't let us take pictures of the interior of the building really.... what a shame, it's beautiful! Go google it or visit yourself hehe.

I bought this hat for my brother Alex's birthday, and I sent him it in the mail a while ago... but alas, snail mail is slow.

GPHY101 had a walking tour around London's Square Mile/East End. Lots of interesting things learnt and seen. I must say, it was definitely my favourite course of the term! Thank you so much Dr. Mary Beth Kitzel (she just finished her Ph.D this term and that's such an awesome accomplishment, yay!). However, I ended up writing my report on the geographies of food and the Smithfield Market, which is kind of ironic because I don't eat any meat...

PSYC100 went to Drusilla's Zoo - which was actually a nice zoo, filled with rescues and open walk-through exhibitions. We had to write an ethogram report afterward, which was actually pretty cool.

OKAY also, this is cool. Kids can become 'keeper for a day' and DO THINGS LIKE THIS. SIT AND FEED THE ANIMALS. AH I CAN'T EVEN.

Anyway, I've really enjoyed my term actually. My academics are not awful, yay. My grades aren't as great as I want them to be, but they're not horrible! The field studies are quite interesting - and it's kind of nice being in university and having more field studies than in high school!

Sorry for how long it has been since the last post. I've really been busy with exams, but as of Dec 4th, I'M DONE MY FIRST TERM OF UNIVERSITY WOO.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

South East England - Adventures with Carrie!

Carrie and I went on an exciting adventure for a couple of hours on Sunday! We started off at Pevensey Castle, explored the village of Alfriston, and ended off at the amazing Cuckmere Haven and the Seven Sisters! Here's a nice selfie of us at the start of our journey. 

 Pevensey Castle is so close to where we study: Herstmonceux Castle. But it's a whole different vibe because it's left in it's ruined state and hasn't been rebuilt.

Alfriston is such a quaint little town with several tea rooms, some shops, and not too much else. Super pretty though! We could walk from one end of the other in 15 minutes or less.

And lastly, Cuckmere Haven! AMAZING. The white hills are called the Seven Sisters. Having seen pictures, I couldn't contain my excitement in actually seeing them in person. How could hills be so white? They're beautiful.

They're whiter further away. We didn't get to walk to the edge of the cliffs (apparently it's dangerous) but it's lovely nonetheless.

I had a great time with Carrie on Sunday! A lot of our friends went away to Venice or Berlin this weekend, and this adventure was a good reminder that there is so much beauty to be explored right near "home".

Crazy Shenanigans

Thursday was an ABC (Anything But Clothes) Party, so we all rocked garbage bags... haha... 

Friday, Jess and I went to a "Krispy Kreme Party" in Eastbourne. It was fun! I think we look cute.

Monday, 11 November 2013

The Fifth of November: Lewes Bonfire Night!

Bonfire Night, or Guy Fawkes Night, is honestly one of the strangest things I've encountered in the UK. 

The parades had a ridiculous amount of people endlessly marching with their torches or as the British call them "fire sticks" (torches in the UK are flashlights...). The bonfire we saw was enormous. The effigies are so odd (the Fracking Dragon was my fave). The fireworks were lovely. There were so many explosions.

Apparently up to 3000 people can be part of the parades... Imagine 3000 people holding fire sticks and walking around a tiny village (permanent population of 18,000)... Ridiculous. 

So these are some pictures from the night. We got there around 6:30 and left about 10/11pm. All in all, a great night with Jessica and Jessica!