Friday, 28 November 2008

My Bad Luck :(

In case you haven't noticed my current facebook status, i have managed to - unintentionally of course - get my laptop's screen broken :( I am so sad at the moment ... it is inconvenient to say the least ... I have so much work to do and not having a fully-functional laptop is the most hindering obstacle one can ever face.
I was thinking about solutions to my problem and I have the following options:
1. Send it to the shop to get it fixed - this is impossible as I will have to wait at least a couple of weeks before I get it back and I can't survive without it for half a day - let alone for a few weeks. OK, so I may sound like I am dramatizing things; and I know that it is not the oxygen I breathe - but for a student - for a uni student - for an MSc student - for a computer science MSc student one's laptop is indeed as important as oxygen.
2. Get a spare one temporarily and send the laptop to the shop (or to Lebanon as my brother suggested) to get it fixed. This option is more desirable than the previous one. However, it is still inconvenient as all my programs are already installed on this laptop and all my files and data are on this laptop and a transition is just a pain in the neck
3. Go to the computer science computer lab and hook my laptop to a monitor and use it. This is actually where I am currently. This is one of the good solutions however the lab is always crowded and it has strict opening and closing times. AND, I have to leave the comfort of my room to go to the lab and stay there and can't go back to the dorms till I have finished working for the day. Or, whenever I need a break or need to grab something to eat I have to carry all my stuff back to the dorms and then back here again - sounds like torture :(
4. Buy a monitor and hook my laptop to the monitor...this is the most convenient solution - however I need at least 100 quid (i.e. 100 pounds :P ) to pay for the monitor ... any suggestions who I should ask for donations? :D
The more I think about it, the more I like the fourth option. I was thinking that I can get a monitor and use it until the term ends and then I can send the laptop to the shop to get it fixed.
Anyone else has any other solutions ;)
By the way, it is 10:30 PM - security people close the lab at 10:45 - and I have to walk back to the dorms but it is 0C outside - brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Monday, 24 November 2008

My International Friends and Flatmates

During International Student Week (Sept 24 - Sep 28) I mainly hung out with the people I met the day before: Verena, Fleur, and Peter. We were also joined by Flora from Tanzania. Flora, however, only attended the orientation lectures with us. The rest of us would meet for dinner and play cards in the evening. They were nice and we had a lot of fun. Now, after two months, I have only stayed in touch with Fleur and I occasionally contact Verena.
Fleur wanted to live in a regular dorm room where she can share her toilet and shower with other students; but because she was under 18 years of age the hall management didn't agree and they made her stay in an en-suite room (like mine). I remember she was pissed off at their decision at the time. In retrospect, I kinda like that decision because she lives in the same building I live in - only she lives in block Q and I live in block T; which is one of the reasons we haven't lost touch.
Verena doesn't like her subject at all. She has to take a course on Ship Science and she hates it. She was facing a lot of difficulties that she has decided not to go ahead with trying to get the MSc degree; instead she will just get a postgraduate certificate.
As for my flatmates, they are really nice. The ones I am close to are Sheena and George. Sheena is from Hong Kong but she has been in England for the past eight years. George is from Zimbabwe and he has been in England for more than three years now. Sheena is a third-year psychology major. George is a first-year nursing student (even though he is 30). He used to work as a nurse in a mental hospital and he decided to get a proper uni degree. He has really long hair which he braided into many thin braids. He also has a car and he drives us to our weekly grocery shopping every weekend. George and Sheena are funny.
Fleur, George, and I have this strange agreement among us. We agreed that we will check on each others every day to see if we are all still alive. You see, about a month ago a girl committed suicide in her bathroom and no one knew about it. No one noticed that she was missing. Then a few days later her flatmates started smelling a very ugly smell and they complained about it and then the hall management discovered the dead girl's body. OK, so the story is horrible and I am sure that none of us will kill themselves; but nonetheless we made an agreement that we will check on each others everyday because we only have each others in this country.
Aso, Sheena and I have an arrangement. She hides my chocolate from me! I buy 2 big chocolate bars every week and she locks them away in her cupboard so I only eat a small piece each day instead of butchering them in two days (because of the CHOCOHOLIC I am !!!!!!)
Well, I am tired now so that is all for now about my flatmates & international friends .... other stuff coming later

P.S: after I published this post, I re-read and it has the quality of an English Composition essay written by a 5th grader attempting to compare and contrast ... ahh well I am too tired to fix it anyway

Sunday, 23 November 2008

12:45 A.M. Saturday Night (Sunday)

It is 12:45 A.M. and my program is still running. This is partly my fault because I didn't work as hard as I was supposed to. You see, I have an assignment due on Monday (worth 25% of the course final grade) and I was intending on finishing it today - with the written report. I did waste some (= a lot of :$) time which is why I am still waiting for the bloody program to produce results at this time - and in case you haven't noticed some of the wasted time was spent on blogging (this is the third post tonight - hey, I have to post a lot to catch up on totally ignoring my blog for two months *bigsmile). Anyways; it is late, I am tired and sleepy, but I am too stubborn to go to sleep.

Fleur came over today and she hang out with George because I was doing my coursework. I was running my program when it produced an error :( I was so annoyed that I went into George's room to nag. We then decided to have something to eat. Fleur and George came up with the idea that we should go midnight-shopping tonight. We usually go on Saturdays or Sundays (during the day :P) but they suggested going at midnight which I was excited about. So, I decided to work for a bit; I ran my program again - it produced another error :( so I started blogging hehehe, then we all chatted for a while, and it was 11 PM and time to go. George suddenly remembered that it would be a good idea to check which ASDA opens 24hr on Saturday. With Verena, Fleur, and George in my room I went online to check out the branches. Unfortunately, NONE of the ASDA branches opens 24hr on Saturday! That was a disappointment as we were all ready to go :( anyways we agreed that we will go tomorrow at 1ish.

I always spend a lot of money on groceries (dunno why!) and I have a big list this week.

Oh yeeeeey my program just finished running; let's hope it actually produced the correct results this time :D OH NOOOOOOO I forgot to set logging on :( :@ :( :@ and now I have to run it again to see the results :( :@ :( :@ Going to sleep now sounds like the best idea ever :D

Saturday, 22 November 2008

STUPID English Taps

Taps come in all shapes, sizes, and forms....English taps also come in all shapes, sizes, & forms...except that they have an extra feature which is that they are STUPID!

You see, they come in two seperate taps:a cold tap & a hot tap....VERY COLD water comes out of the cold tap and VERY HOT water comes out of the hot one!! You can imagine brushing ur teeth or washing your face or just washing your hands & imagine having to jump your hands from under the cold to under the hot to under the cold again ....and it is not just in my bathroom .... they are all over the place....i went thru the hassle of taking pictures around campus, in coffeeshops, restuarants, etc just to prove my point!
The stupidest tap I ever saw is the tap in our kitchen .. we dont have two taps...we only have one tap....however the cold water comes from the front and the hot water comes out from the back!!!! And the big secret is that: THERE ARE TWO PIPES in that friend Peter expressed it best by saying: i khate (he is Polish, he meant "hate") English taps; they are so stupid, it is even kharder ("harder") fitting two pipes in one tap that it is to just fit one!!!!

The attached pictures are: taps in my bathroom - kitchen tap (cold) - kitchen tap (hot) - and kitchen tap (THE SECRET)

Hope you enjoyed :P

Totally Ignoring My Blog !!!

Oh well ,,,, I have been in this country for TWO WHOLE months now - and I haven't blogged anything except for the detailed description of my first day! Shame on me!!!! :$
Sometimes I feel like I have been here for much longer than two months even though at other times I still feel like a stranger in a foreign country. Sometimes when I wake up and for the first two minutes I think that I am in my bed at home but then I realize that I am in my dorm room and not at home. It is probably the smell. I realised this a couple of days ago. My dorm room doesn't smell like home and my bed here doesn't smell like my bed at home. I should probably call Mom and ask her what washing powder she uses so I can use the same one :) The city also doesn't smell like Beirut (OK so it much less poluted hehehe) but I have really missed the smell of rain in Beirut (not the flooded streets though) - I don't know if it is only me; but I think that the smell of rain falling on Beirut is different than the smell of rain here (I am not weird, really. hehehe).The other time in which I feel like a complete stranger is when riding in George's car, especially if it is dark. Not recognizing the roads and not knowing where we are heading really depresses me. I think I have to wait some more time to get past this feeling.
On a more cheerful note, the city is lovely. I love the view outside my room window and I enjoy walking to uni in the morning. The weird thing is that there are no tall buildings here. I feel like I live in some village because all the buildings are small (except for malls and uni buildings DUH) and all the houses are so small!!!!!
Going back to the topic of me TOTALLY ignoring my blog after bugging everyone at home to check it as often as they can - ehem .... well, I have been busy - OK OK not too busy to blog if I was perfectly capable to facebook as well .... but hey I did email you a lot of pictures .... :$
OK, moving on, I will try to blog as much as I can and if possible also write about some of the events that took place in the last few months and write a bit about my friends and flatmates .... is that better? :D