So, this is a sort of random update, but I had a bit of time to kill and thought I would blog a bit before we head to the bus station to catch our overnight bus to London.
Yes, our bus leaves Leeds at midnight and we arrive to London at 6:20am. Our main purpose for going to London is so that Ele can get a Schengen visa (travel permission for mainland Europe), as we will be spending New Year’s in Paris. She has her appointment at the French Embassy at 9:30am, so we’ll probably find somewhere to eat breakfast (and drink lots of tea/coffee) while we wait to attend her appointment. After Ele’s appointment we will be spending the day exploring London. We are going to try and see as much as possible, but now that a 2nd trip will most definitely be needed in order to adequately see the city. Be looking for pictures on Facebook later this weekend.
As I mentioned, we’ve decided to spend New Year’s in Paris and are stoked! We decided that we wanted to get out and go somewhere new to distract us from the fact we can’t be with our families during the holidays and thought Paris would be a fun place to be. We initially tried to find someone from Couchsurfing to host us, that way we wouldn’t be lonely. HOWEVER, the wonderful couple (Jack and Enore, Jack’s from Ireland and Enore’s from Paris) that told us we could crash on their couch will be traveling to Edinburgh so we’ll be staying in their apartment by ourselves during our 5 day stay in Paris. I think we’ll beat the loneliness in the City of Lights 🙂 We leave Leeds on December 28th at midnight and arrive to Paris around 4:30pm the same day. Coming back, we’ll leave Paris around 11pm and arrive to Leeds around 7am the next day. (By the way, if you haven’t heard of Couchsurfing before DEFINITELY check it out. It’s a GREAT way to travel and meet people through hosting/surfing couches).
I mentioned in my last post that I would be teaching my first English class at St. George’s on Monday. Well, it went better than I thought, but not as great as I had hoped. I had 6 students (2 men from Iran, a man and his son from Poland, a girl from Czech Republic, and a man from Eritrea). They are all in the basic/beginner level group and at most know simple words in English. Thus, I created a worksheet to differentiate between fruits and vegetables, with loads of pictures that they had to identify. We first wrote out the names of the fruits and vegetables and I let them practice spelling allowed (this helps them learn the English letters/sounds). After that, I attempted to teach “I like…” and “I do not like…” but I feel like it was a little bit too difficult for them. I don’t think I will attempt grammar yet. Better to stick with simple vocabulary and maybe survival phrases/greetings. I’ll keep you all updated 🙂
I also made some DELICIOUS American biscuits this week. I first attempted to make them last week and they came out ok, BUT on Wednesday I made them again for my personal/social group at uni and they were scrumptious. I ate 3 🙂 My classmates enjoyed them as well. We had another international food day and I got to enjoy chicken and rice from Saudi Arabia, octopus ball from Japan (I was too wimpy to try those), a Korean dessert, Colombian rice pudding, and a variety of English cheeses. I FINALLY figured out which cheese here tastes like mild cheddar in the states–it’s called double gloucester and another one called red leicester. I am so glad I finally found a cheese that I like! British cheddar is definitely a whole lot different from American cheddar (even though the original comes from here, haha).
In other news… some other Americans in Leeds and I will be hosting a Thanksgiving dinner next week at our flat. I will be making macaroni and cheese, sweet potato casserole, squash casserole, and pecan pie. The others will be making green bean casserole, apple pie, mashed potatoes, turkey, and stuffing. It’s going to be delicious, but definitely not the same as being with my family at Aunt Glynda’s. I’ve also invited some of the international students from my course and they’ll be bringing a typical dish from their respective countries. Pictures, of course, will be on Facebook.
Also, next week, Ele and I will be hosting (through Couchsurfing) a guy and girl from Spain who are moving to Leeds. They will be staying with us on the 24th and 25th while they check out some apartments in the area. We’re hoping they’ll become good friends of ours, as we are lacking on Spanish/Latin American friends over here across the pond.
Well, I think that’s it for exciting things on my end…
Love to you all!