Out, Damned Spot

Lena Gryaznova University of Edinburgh, Scotland


October 19, 2014

It has been a while since I have written here, but that is only because of the past few weeks being very eventful. The past weekend I went to visit some family friends in Birmingham. After successfully navigating my first ever train journey, I arrived late Thursday evening, just in time to settle in and get some sleep. The next morning, the family needed to go to work, so they sent me on yet another train journey to Stratford-Upon-Avon, also known as Shakespeare’s birthplace. The town itself was very quaint, but it was being set up for a festival, so the streets were taken up by carnival rides that unfortunately took away from the general Shakespearian atmosphere. It was nice to walk around and enjoy the absolutely gorgeous sunny day. Friday evening included a trip to the theater in Birmingham for a production of “Of Mice and Men”.

Saturday, we decided to drive to Oxford to explore the university. It was great to walk around and see all the different colleges, each with a very old-timey feel. Unfortunately, this was the day all the freshmen were moving in, so a lot of the colleges were closed and it was extremely crowded. Saturday evening, we went on a Stand Up to Cancer march. This particular march was happening in a number of cities throughout the UK, so we joined in to the one in Birmingham. I headed back home on Sunday afternoon, making it home in time for some dinner and sleep to recuperate before the week ahead.

The following week was spent finishing up my first essay of the Semester. On Tuesday, I went to a Pleasance Sessions concert with a few friends. We went to see Middle of Nowwhere Label Showcase w/ Roddy Hart and the Lonesome Fire, Miss Irenie Rose, Pete Roe, and Colin Mcleod. Everyone was extremely good and the general atmosphere was nice and cozy and personal. This was my first live concert that I attended, and I have to say it was a lovely experience. Continuing on my artsy streak, I decided to attend a poetry slam on Thursday. I have been interested in spoken word poetry for a few years now, so finding out that the University of Edinburgh hosted them, I jumped at the opportunity. I even got recruited to judge the poetry, having to give all the performances scores based on the poem, their execution, and the audience reaction. The whole evening was amazing, with so many great poems and great poets.