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Saturday, March 31, 2012

Chocolate is Always Correct

Hello world!

I'm sure you are wondering, "Gee, it's Easter Break! Where in this delightful world roams the one and only Chandrie Elaine Cook?"
Well, golly, let me fill you in!

(Sorry for the 1950s lameness)

Well folks, I am trotting the globe, not with any Harlemers, but with ma mere! You see, I've been spoiled and she has come to visit me for about 2 weeks; It's pretty exciting!

For this trip, we spent a day in Bangor, a day in London, about 2 days (a third if you count traveling) in Edinburgh, one day in Amsterdam, one day in Brugge (Belgium), one day in Brussels, one day in Liverpool (YES!), and then we will (currently in Liverpool) spend 3 days in Northern Ireland (most likely staying in Ballymoney, so if you're an assassin here's your chance to stalk and nail me) and one more day in London. After that my mom will head back to the U.S. and I will head back to studying in Bangor. It's been a fantastic trip, but I'm on my mom's laptop so my time is limited (she's hardcore facebook... I think the time away is killing her... jokes. But seriously, I think she's itching to get back to Cafe World).

Anyway, just wanted to give a quick update as to where in the world this Wookie is traveling! I'll give a more thorough review of my travels once I don't have a Cafe World-crazed woman itching for her fix.

Best part of me saying that? No one in my family reads my blog! I can abuse them as much as I please!

Jokes. I'm in a goofy mood (apologies!).


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Some Sick Obsession

Ok, in Texas we have an obsession. Wait, no, we have obsessions. Let me name a few:
-High school football
-College football
-the Dallas cowboys
-Marching band
-Tex Mex

That's by far not all of them, but a general idea of some of the obsessions. Let me introduce to you an obsession that can actually tie in with college football. It is called fried food. It's not your typical fried food either. This is where fried food meets the olympics. It is the olympics of fried food. Let me emphasize again: if fried food was a competition like gymnastics at the olympics, Texas would be the equivalent of China. We even have young'uns competing!

I train with the fried Snickers.

Yes, it is true. We fry Snickers! That's not all folks! We fry beer, margaritas, butter, Oreos, ice cream, bubble gum, strawberries... you name it and we've either already fried it or we're developing a way to fry it. Not going to lie, I'm actually quite proud of this!

Read it and weep with envy, world.

What does this have to do with studying abroad? Well, let me inform you, and let you be educated.

Ok, here in the U.K. there is a massive obsession with pancakes. My dear Americans, these are not real pancakes! These are the French style! How in the world can one classify a crepe as a pancake? I have no idea, but this is the British obsession. I honestly can't judge (see above obsessions), but I must admit that I find this obsession endearing. In the U.S., we actually do celebrate Pancake Day, but it's very discreet. Let me give you a hint as to how we celebrate Pancake Day:

Do you see it, America? If not, here is another, rather bold, hint.

Ok, but the difference between America and the U.K.? Well, in America Pancake Day was on the 28th of February and it's not as widely celebrated. IHOP celebrates it, and usually the only people to take advantage of it are those who like free stuff and university students. I sat in line last year for, I think, an hour to get a dehydrated short stack of pancakes. I didn't even eat it... I just gave the short stack to my friends! Now, in the U.K. Pancake Day is celebrated on Shrove Tuesday, also known as Mardi Gras. It is HUGE. Morrisons had a sale for pancake ingredients, my flatmates celebrated, families I know here celebrated, at church we had a Pancake Olympics! No, I did not see the connection between the fried food Olympics and this Pancake Olympics until just now. I'm kind of chuckling to myself at the moment.

Anyway, pancakes. How did it come to be? I did some investigating. Apparently pancakes were the food to be eaten because they include rich foods that people would indulge in on Mardi Gras and later give up for Lent. It was a way to use up all those ingredients before giving them up.


Well, now that I've done a brief comparison of obsessions, what did I give up for Lent, you ask? Ha, well, I gave up facebook. Not completely since it's the only way I have to communicate with my dad, but I've severely limited my facebook intake. I can only have facebook for 30 minutes a day. It's killing me! Oh good grief, Easter could not come any sooner. I'm actually not Catholic, I'm Mormon, 
I don't subscribe to your religion!

but I think Lent is a brilliant idea. I've subscribed to it since high school, and I absolutely love [and hate] it. Even though Matt doesn't do it anymore, I've continued in the tradition. Best of luck to the rest of you Lent-subscribers!

Ah, such is life. But hey, you know what's brilliant? The sun. You know what makes it even more brilliant? The fact that it is actually shining. Here in North Wales. I know, shocker, right? 

Oh, before I close, a bit of excitement! So, I pulled a muscle running a few weeks ago, and as a result I haven't been able to do Zumba. Normally this isn't a big deal, but I've actually gained a group of friends who go to Zumba now. There's the cheerfully wonderful Kim and her mom, my ever lovely flatmate Antonia, and the always amazing Natalie. So much fun now! The excitement? I'm pretty sure my muscle will be good to go by Thursday. Fingers crossed, eh? 

Well, I must close and head to lecture. Hope y'all have a great day!

Bore da!