“I don’t know where I am, but I know where I came from”

My hometown of Union Bridge, Md., where I lived for 18 years, had a population of 975 at the 2010 census. New Windsor, where my mom lives now and I come back to during breaks, is a little bit larger with a population of 1,396 at the 2010 census.


View of Carroll County from a car window.


Fabric Nightclub in London has a venue capacity of 2,600.

Which means you could fit all of the New Windsor and Union Bridge residents combined into one London nightclub. Not that they would want to be there. Continue reading


A week in review

I wonder if, for all of my homesickness and Carolina on my mind, adjusting to life back in the States will be harder than I could ever anticipate. It certainly won’t be much like the week I’ve had. Continue reading

Brits say the darndest things

I promised to write more about culture and less about my travels. Probably one of the weirdest parts of living in another country is hearing some of the stereotypes/misconceptions about Americans and the U.S..  I’ve never really thought about how confusing our country might seem to someone in another country because it is so large and diverse. Continue reading

Do as the Romans Do: A Day in Bath

I probably won’t make it to Rome this semester, but there is no shortage of Roman history in Britain.

Janie and I took the National Express bus to Bath, famous as the setting of Jane Austen novels, the location of the only hot springs in England and home of Charlie McDonnell( OK, maybe not so famous for that).

Our bus arrived 20 minutes late, but by Megabus standards that’s practically on time. Our driver was also really nice and looked/sounded like Bates from Downton Abbey. Seriously.

The ride there reminded me a little bit of Carroll County. Except there are more sheep in England.

Bath Trip 10-12 001

We started the day by heading to the Jane Austen Centre. I thought it was incredibly cheesy, but I did learn several things from our guide’s talk. For example, Mansfield Park was Austen’s most popular novel during her lifetime. Which is suprising because today it’s one of the least popular.

Continue reading

Closing Time and Coffee

LOTD (London Observations of the Day):

Closing Time: Everything closes incredibly early. Even coffee shops. Starbucks? 8 p.m.!   The only places open until the early morning hours are night clubs and some bars. Even most pubs close at 11 p.m. I have yet to find any local libraries that are open past 8 p.m.

It’s frustrating. I’ve lived on campus the past two years, so I’m used to spending my nights in libraries or the union or coffee shops. From what I understand, people are less likely to work later hours so most places aren’t open very late. Not to say no one works late, it’s just less accepted than it is in America.

Filter Coffee: I am not a fan of Starbucks. I worked at one in high school and have disliked it ever since. But when I found out they serve filter coffee I conceded defeat. Filter coffee is so hard to find here. I’ve been ordering Americanos at Costa Coffee. I never understood the point of an Americano when I worked at Starbucks. It’s espresso with water. It wasn’t until I moved to Europe that I learned that Americanos were invented because they don’t serve filter coffee here( hence the fake filter coffee for “Americanos”).

Yes, I’ve been drinking a cuppa every day but sometimes you need good ‘ole blue-collar filter coffee to get you through the day.