July 8, 2014

Summer Sun

It's raining today. Not pouring down rain, but a calm, steady rain that actually has raindrops, unlike the rain in England. It's the kind of day that makes me want to curl up with a book and a cup of tea. Oh wait, I already did that for several hours this morning.

However, most days this summer have been sunny and humid and warm. It's been a relaxing summer so far, a nice slowing down of life after the crazy excitement of my Europe travels. I know it's just a lull though, ready to jump right back up as soon as August hits and I have to go off to college. Or get to. Or something.

I decided that I probably should update, because life has slowed down but certainly hasn't stopped since returned to this side of the world. I have been enjoying the company of my wonderful grandparents and my aunt and uncle and cousin, and even though this is just a small part of my family and there's a bit of a hole where all the other members should be and aren't, it has certainly been great to be here.

Fourth of July seemed to have taken up the last two or three weeks, with fireworks and firecrackers going off every night from 9-12 or later, and lots of picnics with way too much good food. People at Capernwray talked about gaining Cape pounds because of all the potatoes, but somehow there my pants kept getting looser. Not anymore. Then again, that may have just as much to do with the fact that now I'm actually washing clothes since I don't have to pay ridiculous amounts of money for laundry.

Sunday was the church picnic from my grandparents' church, and I had a lot of fun running around the playground pretending to be a kid again with my cousin and some of his friends. The day before I also 'played' tennis and badminton and volleyball and ping-pong- and somehow every game ended with everyone just acting ridiculous and basically just throwing or hitting whatever ball in any and every direction and laughing. Am I really that bad at sports that it's not even possible to attempt an actual game of anything? Apparently, but it is much more entertaining to laugh and forget about the idea of competition anyway.

Unfortunately, as far as writing goes- free time actually seems to hinder my writing effort. I mean, I wrote so much more when I was busy. I wrote Shadow Whispers while finishing up my junior year of highschool while taking three AP classes along with the normal ones, and when I attempting my poem a day for April I wrote so many poems while travelling. It's like I write best when I know there's something else I should be doing instead of writing. Now that I have an entire day basically free to do whatever I want, I just can't motivate myself to go write anything. I wrote fifty-one poems in April but have written two in July. It doesn't make any sense!

Although, now that I think about it, the fact that I'm reading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn may have something to do with it, since I find it incredibly hard to set down that book. In fact I can hear it calling to me right now... 

July 4, 2014

Post-Capernwray Culture Shock

I don't know why I thought that three months in Europe wouldn't make such a huge impact on my life. I expected some changes, sure, but I had not realized that Capernwray, my British home for two months, would actually become a home and would steal quite a big piece of my heart.

Now I'm back across the ocean, though not back in Mexico with my parents, brother and no longer existing bedroom. Instead I have a summer with my grandparents, aunt, and cousin, which so far has been fantastic. Not that it's been very long, it's only been four days since I left Europe behind. However, it turns out that three days are enough for some culture shock and some readjustment after Capernwray life.

So without further ado: some things I miss about Capernwray.

1. Tea! Yeah, yeah, I know I can get tea here. But there's something about knowing I'll have four cups of some hot drink every day. I love chai tea, but I'll always have a place in my heart for plain English tea with a little bit of milk.

2. Turning on outlets and adapters. I had a while to wait in the airport, and it sure was strange to not find an on and off switch next to the outlet. And having to take the adapter off of my computer lead... it's just weird.

3. Lifts and Cues. I finally managed to stick my brain full of all this English vocabulary. Now I don't know what to say anymore. "Where's the... um, yeah, bathrooms, that's what they are here!"

4. Digestives and Porridge. I never liked oatmeal, but I got so used to eating porridge every morning for breakfast and now I'm in withdrawal. And those little packages of fruit flavoured oatmeal just don't taste as good. I need to learn how to make my own! And digestives, do I need to say any more? I just miss digestives.

5. Katy Perry's Birthday Song and Midnight Dance Parties. I think I hated this song so much that I had no choice but to love it. I mean, we heard it enough as it was, but with all three of my roommates having birthdays this song just seemed to be playing non-stop. And our dance raves were just awesome in every way. We love you Conference Hall 13!

6. Green fields and sheep. Growing up, I was always shocked by how green Indiana was. It always seemed so bright and so vibrant. But now... I don't think anywhere can compare to how green England was. And I do miss those obnoxiously loud sheep in some small way, though I prefer Indiana's squirrels and rabbits.

7. Other Nationalities. I love my family here so much, but I do miss my Capernwray Family Group and Interactive Group. It's sad not to sit at a table and hear people speaking in German or Korean, and I miss talking about Australia and Philippines and Japan and Argentina and New Zealand or comparing Nursery Rhymes in Germany, Ireland, the USA and Canada.

8. Pre-Planned Outfits. Getting dressed at Capernwray was easy. Maroon Monday, Stripes on Tuesday, on Wednesday we wear Pink, Theme Thursday, Freaky Friday, Saturday was usually free and Sunday was dress day.

9. Nail Painting on Tuesdays. I loved my group of Capernwray friends so much, and Tuesday was always a highlight of my week when we got together and painted nails and usually laughed way too much. I did get a little bit better at painting someone else's nails, but I'm still pretty bad...

Obviously there are way more things I miss about Capernwray and a lot of things that I'm still readjusting to. Yes, I still have no idea what side of the road I'm supposed to walk on. "Wait, why is the car driving that direction on that side?" And it always throws me off in restaurants when I read chips and french fries. It takes a while to remember which is which. Oh, and I definitely miss parties in the Beehive whenever we had something to celebrate or something accomplished or something sad or something upsetting. And I miss my extra meals, coffee break and supper. And I don't know what meals are supposed to be called. Right... tea time isn't actually a thing over here.

But, as I've said a thousand times before, it's all part of the adventure. I'm learning and figuring it out, and storing up stories and experiences for all those novels that will come along someday. Thank you Capernwray, for all the things you gave me to miss.