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Christmas update December 13, 2005

Posted by ayasawada in Personal.

I know, I said I hate these “Here’s everything I’ve done in the last few months” posts, but it has come to be a necessary evil. I have indeed, neglected by blogs these past two months but with good reason.

That reason can be nothing else but University. This first term has been intense, busy to the point of ridiculousness but very very very fun. Despite several weeks of stress the enthusiasm I had in October remains. These past few months we’ve done lectures, seminars, practicals and assignments on everything from poetry to the History and Philosophy of Science, how to make TV programmes, what makes good radio and of course turned out an entire science magazine in the space of 6 weeks. It has been ridiculous at times: tons of reading, essays due in, all-nighters for the fricking magazine…. but it all got done and as of today term is over! Woo-hoo! Three weeks to (in the head of department’s words) “forget about all this and enjoy your freetime”. I think “freetime” is an abstract concept I vaguely recall the meaning of and I look forward to exploring it in the impending Xmas holidays.

Some details before that:

I,Science, the wonderful Imperial College Science magazine of which I am the all-powerful Editor-in-Chief, was published on 1 December 2005. You can download the pdf version here (issue 3). Thanks to everyone who worked so very hard on it. I think you’ll agree it looks remarkably professional for something a bunch of (largely) first-timers threw together in five weeks. Being an editor is waaay harder than I thought – although I felt like most of the time my job was to worry about stuff I had no control over. I felt like all I did was clog up people’s inboxes with emails, organise meeting after meeting and make decisions on things I didn’t really know all that much about (although I did write the editorial and contents page….). I still can’t believe we managed to get our advertising (though literally right at the last minute) and I am deeply indebted to my chief layout designers Amber and Alex for putting in the late hours. Next term is our big ‘Guardian Student Media Awards notice us!’ issue. But at least we all know what we’re doing now. Well, most of us….

-Assignments: One distinction and three passes, though one high-pass. Not too shabby. Could do better.

– TV: Greg and Francesca’s fabulous entertainment show Foot and Mouth can be seen on Imperial’s STOIC TV station and streamed across the web. That main camera that never moves – that’s me behind it that is. Sometimes I am just a lazy sod.

-Radio: Check out my friends James, Helen and Alison in their weekly guide to the weird world of music, White Noise exclusively on Imperial College Radio. For some reason, I’ve got a mention every week so far. Aww, shucks!

The friends I have made are indeed wonderful people. If you look at my Flickr zeitgeist you might see a few of them from when we went ice-skating at the Natural History Museum. We’ve had many a good time in the Union bar and in a few hours we’ll be let loose in Chinatown for our Xmas meal. I hope will will all remain good friends (and not just a bunch of network contacts).

The other reason I’ve been ridiculously busy is because of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT), which I took last Sunday. It took five hours (!!!) and went better than expected but still confirmed my suspitions that I indeed cannot speak Japanese and am losing any vague ability I had since I stopped lessons three months ago. My fellow EIC friends and I made a brave effort but our weekly “JLDT (japanese language deficienty test)’ meetings were in vain. Still, at least we learnt a few things and had a good laugh about it in the pub afterwards. I’m tempted to never look at another kanji again, but I’ll force myself to pick up the books again in the new year.

Leaping wildly from subject to subject my first attempt at a website, the Sunday Papers, has closed down. I’ve had trouble accessing it for months and finally it disappeared from the Telewest server a few weeks ago. Not sure what the problem was, but given I have barely enough time to write here, yet alone any short stories, I doubt it will be missed. Still, a useful exercise and one day I might resurrect the old thing.

Bookwise, I finished The man in the high castle, but am still puzzling over the ending somewhat (explain it to me please?). A good read, but not as good as my current read – Haruki Murakami’s The Elephant Vanishes. He makes me want to write more stories, better stories, inspired stories. Should be able to finish this one over Xmas, though I am also supposed to be reading The Double Helix, The Selfish Gene and A Brief History of Time as course-relevant material. That probably means I’ll end up reading David Beckham’s autobiography or something but the intention is there….

Yes, Xmas! I feel as if it’s snuck up on me as I really haven’t had a chance to consider it. In fact, our house isn’t the least bit christmassy (sp.?) since we aren’t going to be here! For the first time ever, my family has decided to go on holiday: to DisneyWorld! Yes Xmas and New Years spent in 18 degrees Florida in the company of Mickey, Minne and the like. My parents offered to pay so I wasn’t going to look a gift-horse in the mouth (esp. since I have no income as a student). I am a bit tentative about spending 10 days with just my family but hopefully we won’t kill each other. And it has been five years since our last family holiday, although I do remember my Mum swearing that would be “the last family holiday ever”…. Still it shall be nice and I will be taking my Science Communication cap with me for when we go to the Epcot centre. See, I love it so much, I will even ‘study’ when I’m on holiday…..



1. k-li - December 14, 2005

T_T lucky bugger…. I wanna go to Disneyland!!!!

Grad you are having fun at uni though ^_^

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