Sunday, November 6, 2011

Remember, remember the fifth of November

I've actually done some exciting stuff recently. I'm so proud of myself haha.
Last Saturday was White Night, where the town stays open really late in celebration of the end of summer. I had heard there were a lot of art exhibits/ artsy things going on as well. Going into town, I really hadn't prepared like I should have. Only a Google search away was a huge list of all the things going on around town, including a handy little map. But of course, I didn't see any of this until the next day. We arrived at Old Steine and saw massive amounts of people, some dressed in costumes. I was dressed as a pirate, and so automatically was having a fabulous time. The parks were decorated with lights and paper mache peacocks. The Royal Pavillion was swarming with drunken young adults. Instead of an art night, it was more of a drunken mass of people. And wow, the open container laws still surprise me. They can have open containers of alcohol in this country. And seeing THAT many people with THAT much alcohol IN PUBLIC was crazy. It was an interesting night; next year I'll make sure I actually know where the art exhibits are.
Halloween was this past Monday and I celebrated by watching a scary movie with two of the people on my floor. Then we watched "Run Fatboy", which isn't scary but was still a pretty good movie! A quiet Halloween, but an enjoyable one nonetheless. There is an interesting difference between Halloween here and Halloween back home- they definitely try to go for the "scary" element over here a lot more. Like, they had the same costumes, except they whited out their faces and added some fake blood. Zombie, zombie pirate, zombie fairy, zombie skanky girl, zombie skeleton, ... you understand.
Diwali was two Wednesdays ago (I think... I may be a few days off on that) and sadly didn't get to celebrate. There wasn't anything going on in Brighton. Maybe next year I'll take a trip to London and celebrate Diwali there. I definitely think it'd be worth the trip. But in a pathetic attempt to make up for my lack of Diwali celebration, I went to an Indian food buffet with a friend from lab this past week. It was a nice break from lab and I enjoyed the food- but there is a Diwali-sized hole in my heart that Indian buffet couldn't quite fill. Although it came close with all of the naan I ate.
Last Wednesday I went out at night with the girls from cocktail night. We got 2 for 1 drinks at Bar Valentino (where they FINALLY didn't measure out the drinks) and then to The Font for some beers and pub food. And that night was awesome. I love spending time with those girls; its so relaxed and drama-free. Everyone gets along well and I don't feel so bad about putting on my "awkward American" hat when I'm with them. The best break from a tough week in lab, on a day where I was especially doubting myself, and they made it all better. We've planned on spending more time together- I've been promised Italian food and 80s nights, and I am fully planning to cash in on those promises haha.
On Friday, George had planned a lunch outing to a nearby pub to officially introduce me to the rest of the lab. I'd already met most everyone there, but I did appreciate the gesture. Although- to be honest, I was nervous about being the center of attention for a few hours. It wasn't as bad as I thought it might be, but I'm not the biggest fan of being the center of attention and its hard to avoid that when the outing is for you. Luckily, I knew most of the people there and was sitting next to the people whom I've become friends with. So I wasn't as much of a shining example of awkwardness as I've been in the past.
Yesterday was the 5th of November. Now if you are thinking "oh, that sounds familiar but I can't remember what its about", think of the movie V for Vendetta. Did that remind you? If not, go to this link. Anyway, a town nearby Brighton, the town of Lewes, has one of the biggest Bonfire Nights in England. There were thousands of people wielding torches, parades, fireworks displays, and bonfires. It was so awesome and anyone who's in England around this time needs to celebrate in the festivities. I tried to take some pictures, but they didn't turn out well. I'm hoping I can steal some pictures off of facebook and upload them onto here later.
And then today (see, I told you I've been busy) I went into town with Caitlin and Chad to enjoy some retail therapy and to go for tea. I FINALLY had my favorite tea, Lady Grey, in England. I also had an epic grilled cheese and scone (which, btw, clotted cream > butter). We enjoyed watching a big group of people dressed in olden times clothing and sipping tea in the Tea Cozy. Adorable.
And now I've caught you up! It was a good week socially. I even got to talk to Jenna, Eva, Sarah, and Ian this past week- which I always enjoy.
Before I leave, I have to tell you about the Big Lemon. The Big Lemon is a bus that runs through campus and into Brighton. It runs on used cooking oils and every time it passes by, it smells like a fast food restaurant. Some of you may be thinking "gross". But I prefer the smell of french fries (sorry, chips) over the cloud of natural gas smoke enveloping my face as a city bus passes. And the Lemon is bright yellow. AND the bus stops are yellow with a picture of a lemon on it.
Its a truck full of lemons, if there ever was one. And I love it.

I'll post pictures soon (maybe)

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