Getting there/here

It was an arduous journey of arduousness that took 15 hours (according to the clock…it wasn’t actually that long, thank god. I guess it was really about 10 hours: 7.5 to fly and 2.5 for immigration/customs/driving to RH).

On BA, I was in this pimped out exclusive section called “World Traveller PLUS.” Ok, it’s only like 1 up from economy, but I got to board right after the people in the sleepy beds. We even had those curtains for our little mini-cabin to keep the plebs out.

Here’s the seat in front of me:

flight-0011

 

I don’t know if you can see in the picture, but the headphones they gave out were all fancy and padded and covering my whole ears. And they were better than the ones in the regular cabin, too.

Here’s me trying to discretely take a picture of the cabin, but it’s all blurry because the lady next to me started to turn back toward me, so I panicked:

flight-002

Other amenities include: socks, a pen, a sleep mask, a toothbrush + toothpaste, blanket, pillow, free wine, 3 course dinner, breakfast, legroom, a footrest, and lots of movies. Apparently, there was also a place to plug in ones laptop, but I did not take advantage of that luxury.

This represents the part of the journey that was still novel/bearable (ps. I just dled GoogleEarth…AMAZING):earth

I unfortunately had to walk through the steerage a few times to get to the lavatory (I wasn’t quite exclusive enough to use the close ones in the fancy pants section, also separated by curtain).

Oh and I forgot to mention that we also got free copies of the Daily Mail, and apparently there’s a run on normal lightbulbs because the EU is outlawing them in order to be more green/eco friendly.

This represents the rather unfortunate part of the journey where I wanted to die a teeny bit:europe2

I slept a little bit, and then they turned the lights on and were like “BREAKFAST! Tea or coffee?” and I was like “gahhhshdnfmsdlgkh.”

It was pitch black outside for most of the flight (obviously), but I could see a bunch of stars. Not much down below though. As we started making out initial descent, I took this picture of the beginning of sunrise out the window:flight-0031

You can’t really see the clouds, but they were fluffy, and I wanted to frolic in them.

Approach approach approach:england

I was a little bit giddy with excitement when we finally broke through the clouds, but then, surprise surprise, it was dark. And foggy. And I couldn’t see anything exciting.

When I got off the plane, the 1st thing I noticed was several (SEVERAL) authentically British people wearing white sneakers. I hope they get pickpocketed.

Thankfully, Immigration and Customs were a breeeeeze. I got sniffed by possibly the least intimidating drug/bomb dog ever. It was a cute little yellow lab. Then I just wheeled my overflowing luggage cart right through customs. One of the officers asked a man walking near me where he flew in from (Cuba dun dun dun), but I just ran away and didn’t make eye contact.

Richard (family friend of family friends the Smiths) picked me up. I felt very official because he had a sign with my name on it. Like the important people do.

I was supremely weirded out by riding in the left side of the front seat and on the left side of the road as we drove from Gatwick.london

I saw bits of quintessential England countryside and a horse!

Now, contrary to popular belief, Royal Holloway- University of London is not actually in London. It is in Egham, Surrey. Confusing I know. But it is still within the M25, which roughly outlines greater London (in the looooosest sense of the word).

Today some of my Visiting Student comrades and I ventured into Egham, our little town for some supplies. It’s about a 10-15 minute walk down the hill. The sidewalk is very narrow, however, and it felt a little treacherous at a few points (only a little! do not be alarmed).egham-21

 It was rather cold, but I did get a hair dryer (yess!) some hand soap (none in my bathroom) and toilet paper (only 1 roll provided. Generous, I know). And another plug converter. But I must remember that only my computer and camera charger don’t need the voltage converter. In my jetlagged state this morning, I forgot that, and my hair straightener had uncomfortable amounts of smoke coming out of it after a few seconds (again, do not be alarmed, the situation turned out fine).

My room is SO NICE. 10 times nicer than any room I’ve had at Barnard. I have a full size bed, and my own full bathroom (though it’s this dodgy wet room arrangement where the shower, which is a bit too misty and not pressurey for my taste)  isn’t really separate and the whole floor gets wet.

Campus feels huuuuuge though. Way bigger than the ‘nard.campus

And my classes apparently happen one after the other, except each begins and ends on the hour, with no time between, and in different buildings. Hmm.

I’ve haven’t really taken any proper pictures of anything yet. Blame it on the culture shock.

Tomorrow, to Windsor. For tea with the Queen (just kidding). But I really am going to Windsor (my first castle!).

HOLY COW I’M IN ENGLAND!!!!!!!!!

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2 Responses to “Getting there/here”

  1. M-Gorovitz Says:

    You are awesome.
    Have fun!!!!!
    Can’t wait to see you back at the ‘nard come fall…
    ~marisa

  2. Lara Says:

    I lent the wrong voltage converter or something like that to my friend in London, and not only did it fry off some of her hair — that straightener flew up to hair styling appliance heaven that evening. :[ I blamed my dad for not telling me which one was which, and he bought me a new one. Hahaha.

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