Apr. 3rd, 2005 03:34 pm
lareinenoire: (Default)
Feeling *so* much better.

I just spent the past three hours wandering the city with my camera. I woke up today and realised that it was the third heartbreakingly gorgeous day in a row, and as this is East Anglia, it'll probably start pouring within the next twenty-four hours, so...

Carpe diem and all that crap. ;)

There were at least some remnants of the carpets of violets I'd seen before I left for India, but some of it had been replaced by cornflowers. Still very very pretty. Wandered along the Church Rate Walk and Malting Lane, took photographs of random houses and ivy-grown walls and a few abandoned Métro tickets that I found amusing for some reason. King's was where I'd seen the carpet of flowers, so I went there next, strolled through the College and past all the Japanese tourists, and ended up wandering into the market.

Dialogue between Rational and Irrational Halves of my brain as follows.

Irrational: Ooooh, book!
Rational: Ahem? Money?
Irrational: But it's got full-colour photographs of the Titanic. It's research!
Rational: I repeat. Ahem? Money?
Irrational: Well, you see, if I buy this book, I'll have more research material. If I have more research material, I'll write more. If I write more, I'll finish the novel. If I finish the novel, I have a far greater chance of publishing the novel. And if I publish the novel, there might be money.
Rational: And who in their right mind would read what you write?
Irrational: I'm more comprehensible than Joyce!
Rational: ...
Irrational: Oh, fine, that says nothing. But still...
Rational: Your logic does not resemble our earth logic.
Irrational: It took you this long to figure that out?

Needless to say, I bought the book. And it's so pretty...

Also picked up books on Dandyism, the Whitechapel Murders, and a primer for Medieval French. Yes. I'm eclectic.

Did my requisite sneaking through Trinity and took yet more photographs. Must do this again sometime.

Only cloud was the lack of a teleportation device. If I had a teleportation device, I could have snatched my boyfriend out of what was probably a very decent mid-morning sleep and made him go punting with me. With demi-sec and sandwiches and probably very obnoxious PDA. Because it's spring in Cambridge and that's what people do. Maybe next spring.

My cold feels so much better. And there are birds singing outside my window. Today was a very nice day.


Feb. 19th, 2005 11:22 am
lareinenoire: (Default)
Fully recovered from drunkenness.

Still in PhD programme.


Now, I actually *will* get my lazy arse to the library today...
lareinenoire: (Default)
Right. So I'm drunk. No, correction. I'm very drunk. So drunk I got sick earlier. Rather embarrassed about that. No...really embarrassed about that. I'm not the drunken sort.

At any rate...thought I'd let everyone know. Already IM'd [ profile] rosamund and [ profile] atropos333 regarding said event, but here goes.

I've been officially provisionally accepted to the PhD programme at the University of Cambridge. Department of French. Research on Alexandre Dumas and the confluence of historical and Gothic fiction if that means anything to anyone.

So I will be--barring any absolutely insurmountable financial difficulties and/or academic disasters--spending the next three years here in Cambridge, doing my PhD.

Wow. I managed multiple-syllabic words.

Going to go make tea now.

Au revoir, mes amis!


Jan. 27th, 2005 12:07 am
lareinenoire: (Vid)
As of four minutes ago GMT, I am now twenty-two years old.

I just feel sleepy.

Though there was one random thing today that deserves mentioning. My Romanticism and Revolution seminars take place in one of the French professors' rooms at Sidney Sussex. His rooms just happen to be the same ones inhabited by Oliver Cromwell several centuries ago.

::shakes head ruefully::

I love this city.


Dec. 14th, 2004 10:51 pm
lareinenoire: (Default)
Read a very interesting article today.

"Increasingly, it seems to me, our world is dividing into two kinds of things: those that aid work, or at least represent a path to it, and those that don't Things in the first category are good and noble; things in the second aren't. Thus, for example, education is good (as long as we don't have to listen to any of that "end in itself" nonsense) because it will pre­sumably lead to work. Thus playing the piano or swimming the 100-yard backstroke are good things for a fifteen-year-old to do not because they might give her some pleasure but because rumor has it that Princeton is interested in students who can play Chopin or swim quickly on their backs (and a degree from Princeton, as any fool knows, can be readily converted to work)."

Perhaps the article exaggerates. But, sitting on the far side of the fence as I am, I can't help but wonder.

I started learning the piano because my cousin was learning and I was curious, kept it up while I enjoyed it and stopped when I no longer had time. I started voice lessons because I enjoyed singing. I did theatre because I thought it was fun. I read because it was what I loved to do, and I decided to study literature for the same reason. Not because it looked good, but because I love books and writing. These things--unremarkable and simply motivated as they were--didn't get me into Princeton.

Yet they got me into Cambridge.

I wonder what this says about either school. Perhaps that one lives in the past and the other in the present. But if this is what the present has to offer, I have to admit my instinct is to retreat into the past and stay there. It's cowardly of me. But while I am a workaholic, I'm a different breed. I like my comforts, but if having them meant giving up my books, it wouldn't happen.

I must admit it surprises me in retrospect that my parents didn't have fits about this. Though they're certainly making up for it by terrifying my brother and sister about's sad, really. Very sad.

On a happier note, learning more about Catherine de Courtenay. She's actually showing bits of personality from the book I was reading today, which is fairly impressive considering it's a family genealogy and people don't normally show much personality. Sadly, there are only five pages specifically dealing with her...


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