Well, with five (fully categorised) post-it notes to make up my summer to-do list, and less than twelve hours before I go travelling with him, I thought I’d recount the first couple of weeks of my summer break.
After arriving back in the Guildford area, I thought I’d get my car cleaned. Which was great, except I’d forgotten to buy a ticket for the car park. Luckily, the lovely car wash man bought a ticket for me, leaving it on my windscreen when I returned. Isn’t that lovely? In Godalming, however, I’d been out of the car less than two minutes before I had to charm my way out of a parking ticket from a nearby official.
And then began the inevitable cycle of travel vaccinations, downloaded TV shows & movies and late-night cereal.
I’d have plenty of time to prepare for my trip, right? Wrong. I like to busy myself.
I went to see Hamlet, featuring Jude Law. Law was funnier than I’d been led to believe, but it seemed like he was channelling a Mr. Tennant a bit much. My favourite part, though? Ophelia. Her under-acting was phenomenal as her subtle insanity shone through as clearly plaguing her. The speech-song-speech patter matched her lovely voice and she never seemed the gimmicky nutter…
The only thing I found myself wondering by the end, aside from how well Tennant’s performance was (and his supporting cast), by comparison, was a criticism of Shakespeare. Just how old is Hamlet supposed to be? Off the top of my head I’d guess 23, but his oft-talked about “adolescence” would peak far before that!
Thanks to my mother owning a Peugeot, we managed to get VIP corporate hospitality tickets to the London Taste Festival for free, which was a pleasant (and pallet-pleasing) day in Regent’s Park.
Among the hostel bookings, bus tickets and rail-timetable perusing, I also had the small matter of a pesky Russian visa to get hold off. A trip to London, a wad of money lighter, 36 hours later and I was granted a visa. We’ll gloss over the fact I mistook a ‘free massage parlour’ for an internet café that day, though.
Just in case I’d been missing university a bit too much, I ended up attending the RHUL Black Tie Summer Feast, sitting on the Principal’s table and having a jolly good (free!) evening meal.
And finally, I’d managed to wangle myself a job in telephone fundraising for the RGS. Run in MacGregorJones’ offices in Southwark, I was officially a ‘friendraiser’ for the RGS Foundation this past week.
Drumming up support (i.e. money) for the 500th Anniversary of the school, I was subjected to a man who lied about his age, minor verbal abuse from a Venerable Archdeacon, an NYC OG whoo thought he was the police and even spoke to a nice lady en France qu’elle n’avait jamais entendu parler de la RGS. All for £8 an hour, I raised about £1000 for The Foundation. I was quite pleased with myself, althoough my career as a telephone fundraiser is definitely on hold (pun intended?).
Oh, and I got a 2:1 for this year, which I’m moderately pleased with. Who knows what I can get if I attend more than sixteen lectures?
Anyway, I’d better go and think about the most important question plaguing my three-and-a-half weeks of travelling around Eastern Europe: cards or TravelScrabble?