Monday, April 16, 2007

Summertime, and the living is easy (OR, early spring and the weather is summery)

So. It's been 24 C for three days. TWENTY-FOUR! T-shirt weather, in April! It feels kind of summery. Or at least hotter than I remember it being in early spring back home. Global warming is not all bad, as Jeremy Clarkson of Top Gear fame has sagely noted.

Hence,, our usual weekend hikes were rather sweatier than usual. On Saturday, we decided to go to Regent's Park, both for the purposes of chicken tikka wraps in the Church Street markets and to see whether the formal gardens were looking appropriately bling.

They were:

Those are some very, very fancy tulips, indeed (at the end of the main promenade). And just in time to make up for the the fluffy white tree things which are no longer in bloom. The fluffy pink trees have also stepped in to take up the slack.

Regent's Park also has some genuine black swans. They look like home. At the moment, it also has a population of about 100,000 half naked people carpeting the grass, but this seems to be de rigeur for the season.

On the way home by the canal, we came across this tragic casualty.

It was a lovely day, and we both came home with the teeniest stripes of pink skin on our arms, being apparently newfound English people without our former Australian leather hides to protect us - and all after skipping only one summer! Thank God we wore hats. I think I'm going to have to rethink the "sunscreen is for sissies" approach to the Northern Hemisphere.

On Sunday we had grand master plans to do a day trip from every tourist's bible "25 Day Trips From London," with St Albans (Roman ruins) and Rochester (Norman ruins) on the shortlist. However, Thameslink trains were out until 11am and Grant took advantage of my morning weakness - plus the fact that we were both already wilting in the heat at 11am - to suggest that we just hang around locally instead. Hence, we contented ourselves with a circuit of Kensington Palace Gardens (or KPG as Grant now calls it, being jiggy with the language of the young people) and Hyde Park, both of which also had a carpet of half-naked folks (ditto, Princess Di memorial fountain/human cooling device, Hyde Park). People were not, however, hot enough to risk microbial infection swimming in the Serpentine pool thing. Again, another beautiful day even if it was stinking hot, which on the other hand did provide an excuse to spend the rest of the day watching sci-fi DVDs flaked out in bed. By the way, that is totally one of the main advantages of the bedsit way of life.

Another gratuitous flower shot, this from the gigantic wisteria around the corner:

Classy, eh?

Uni-wise I have had a bit of a patchy week. I started and finished my holiday trade mark assignment on Friday which I thought was a reasonable effort. However, it is 3,500 words long - roughly twice the usual limit for this sort of task. I am certainly not going to admit the length to my tutor, since it is his damn fault for not setting a word limit. Anyway, as my thesis demonstrates, I am incapable of producing a short piece on anything. I have been avoiding my copyright assignment since I think it is kind of silly and a waste of time. I would much rather do an essay, but instead I am stuck with the job of cross-referencing international treaties. YAY. I have also been avoiding my thesis for the last fortnight, since I have had more pressing demands on my time, but I always think this is something of a mistake since I end up in chronic self-doubt mode if I don't work on it fairly regularly (as Grant will attest, having heard me moan about it all weekend), plus it takes me a while to get back up to speed when I get back on the job, given that the subject is MAXIMUM EXTREME THEORY, just for fun. I comfort myself with the fact that I THINK my supervisor would have mentioned something somewhere in the last 23,000 words if he thought I was completely off the track or an idiot. However, maybe he just wants to leave it to the last minute to maximise shock value.

Anyway, today I barely managed some futzing around with German copyright law. I'm still not up to speed with copyright and it vexes me. I think I am doing a little better with the other two subjects, the main problem being that they are both more interesting than copyright, which let's face it, would not be hard.

I've organised a study group for this week, and it will be interesting to see how many of the promised attendees actually show. Hopefully it will make it more palatable to get working on the past papers. Exams are in August. It seems like a long time away, especially since I only have 7 weeks of class between now and then and the rest is time off, but it's never too early to panic, right?

In other news, I finally managed to make decent bean burgers yesterday, by dint of actually following the recipe properly instead of stuffing around with it. Who'd a thunk? Alison Holst, I salute you, and your thrifty meal ideas! Also, today proved my housewife street cred by baking an apple cake. It is a bit eggy (how could you let me down, Alison Holst?) but it's OK.

Ro and Ral are arriving shortly. Hurray! More tourist times ahead.

Steps: 85,000 last week (at .6m per step, more than 40km), only about 5,000 for today though.
Thesis: don't touch it, and it can't get longer, right? I don't know. It's kind of like Shroedinger's thesis. If I don't open it to do a word count, it could theoretically have less words.
Bike: zip - my head hangs in shame
Prolix trade mark assignments: ONE.
Vitamin D absorbed through sweet, sweet sun exposure: quite a lot, I think.

1 comment:

lelak said...

Egads! Are parks no longer safe for bearkind?