Gonna go to choir tomorrow and sing a bunch of patriotic stuff, then going to an election night watch party.
The last two days have proceeded in a similar fashion to the first. Both have included morning trips to Walmart and afternoons in the pool.
Yesterday we bought a ball to play with in the pool which seems to actually be primarily used to splash me or hit me in the head. I bought bubble mixture with a massive wand as well which kept me satisfied despite the abuse.
In the evening we ventured across the interstate to go for a meal. We managed not to die or jaywalk (we did get some strange looks for walking though) and ate at Outback Steakhouse. It’s meant to be Australian themed but it’s not really very Australian. I had Alice Springs Chicken which was essentially Hunter’s chicken with mushrooms and served with honey mustard sauce and ridiculously salty chips. It was really good aside from the chips. Can’t cope with that much salt. I wanted to do some long exposure photos on the bridge over the interstate on the way back but everyone kept walking when I stopped to take photos.
After changing into my pyjamas I was suddenly reminded that there was meant to be a meteor shower, so out I went in my pyjamas. We only saw one, but a cricket flew into Nick’s face and Mike invented the Walmart Wahoolie so I regret nothing. It was worth it for that.
Today in the pool we met some of the other exchange students which was cool. A few more recognisable faces once we move in.
I’ve been feeling pretty tired this evening. I’ve repacked my cases and me and Jo have been watching Harry Potter on ABC Family: second half of Order of the Phoenix and now Half Blood Prince is just on finished.
We’ve booked a taxi to OU for 8:15 tomorrow morning to check in and move in to our apartments. So I’m thinking sleep time soon.
Surprisingly, we all woke up pretty early and most of us experienced breakfast. Breakfast was a sugar high. ‘Biscuits and gravy’ not so much, but the other things on offer: very sweet apple juice, pastries, waffles and syrup and… my first experience of Froot Loops. I enjoyed them in a strange I’m-not-sure-what-these-taste-of way.
Later in the morning we headed off to Walmart for food and other bits and bobs. It was a lot larger than we’d imagined and we soon noticed the Sooner Store inside and had a browse at that. It seems people are super proud of OU or something. When we were at the checkout, we had a discussion about how much a dime is, resulting in asking the checkout lady, who, after responding, told us, “I like the way y’all talk.”
After returning from Walmart and eating lunch myself and some others went to try out the pool. It’s small but so nice in the heat. I spent most of the afternoon in there.
Then there was the matter of dinner, which we left rather late to discuss and then discovered the issue of crossing the interstate. In the end, it was taking so long to decide that we ordered Domino’s. The sauce on the pizza base was nicer than in the UK, but the crust was too salty. And soon after it was bed time. And I slept like a baby.
I got up at 4am yesterday morning after about 2 hours sleep. My parents and I left at about 5:20 and had a surprisingly good drive. So good that we arrived at the airport almost 2 hours early. Just as we pulled into the car park at Heathrow I had a goodbye phonecall from Lawrence. Then, walking to the terminal, there were policemen with massive scary looking guns. Since we were so early, we grabbed a drink and something to eat from Cafe Rouge and while we were sitting there my brother phoned to say goodbye.
After a while Nick arrived and (after a few problems) we both checked in, with none of my anticipated baggage troubles, then waited for everyone else to arrive and check in. After that there were the goodbyes. I managed to not cry. Although I almost started when we were about to go through security.
The first flight was long, but okay. I was robbed of my window seat though. The airline had moved us around so we could all sit together. But I didn’t mind. I ended up next to Luke, and most of the time it seemed like all there was to see out the window was bright whiteness. I watched Jeff, Who Lives At Home (but fell asleep), The Avengers (fell asleep again), and John Carter (lost my place half way through due to an advert and it would have taken forever to get to with the fast forward on those TVs).
We landed with a bump and it was time for the dreaded connection… which was fine. We were at the gate with 40 minutes or so to spare, however, our plane and flight crew weren’t there. They’d been delayed by bad weather meaning that we were delayed for about two and a half hours. But, that plane ride. That plane ride! From a little while after take off until we were almost landing there was a thunderstorm to the left of the plane (I had a window seat this time) and it was amazing. So amazing.
All very tired, we piled into the minibus that would take us to Days Inn and were told tornado and hail stories as we were driven. Immediately after stepping out of the minibus we noticed the crickets. They were everywhere. Lots of dead ones but lots of live ones too. But we coped, with getting in and out of room ninja-style to keep them out.
So, about 2:30am local time was when I slept: 8:30 UK time, meaning I had been up for about 28 and a half hours. Far too long. But I made it and that’s the important bit.
when everything is packed and you only left a black bra and a white t-shirt to wear.
So, a lot of goodbyes have been said and now it’s close. Tomorrow is my final day of friends. Tuesday and Wednesday are for packing. Then it’s happening.
The mindmap is looking mostly ticked off, although I need to do one for packing. Packing hasn’t been thought about much. But I’ve chosen my classes for ‘fall semester’: Statistical Meteorology, Atmospheric Dynamics III: Mid-latitude Synoptic Scale Dynamics, Synoptic Meteorology Lab, and Introduction to Tropical Meteorology. I also know that I am living in Traditions Square West (the boys are in East but it’s not far) with Joanna and two other girls. I have a dollar cash card ready to go but still need some actual physical dollars. Another thing I’m pretty excited about is that I have a choir audition! 5:18pm on August 19th. Kind of scary too though. I’ll be singing “There’s A Fine, Fine Line” from Avenue Q. And you have to do sight reading which I am not very good at. But we’ll see what happens.
So that is all of that.
We’ve also been sent and orientation week schedule, which includes a mandatory session about alcohol, and one called “OU 101 - Campus Spirit - OU Student Life”; a session on dating in the US; a “Cookout and Ice Cream Social” where the ice cream is served by the deans and directors (which I think is a lovely idea); and a late night “Exclusive Target Shopping Event” with complimentary gifts and snacks.
Oo! Also! Because Nick is wonderful, I have window seats on both planes, which makes me happy. My plan is to knit on the plane, since the TSA and Heathrow airport say I’m allowed knitting needles in my hand luggage.
I think that’s all there is for now, but I’ll just leave this here.
Our first four (provided we make our transfer in Atlanta) nights in Norman will be spent at Days Inn. Jake and Joanna booked our rooms today =]