Happy Chinese New Year!

23 Feb

Again, Monday- Friday is consumed with work and school.  Monday was very interesting. I was able to work with buyers for the fashion company Betty Barclay I am interning with. Two little Irish woman who owned their own fashion boutique came in to choose next seasons line for their shop. They were there for three hours! The women I work with had explain to me in advance they were very different buyers, I soon learned they were very indecisive and easily influenced by the other buyers around them. To explain further I work for a wholesale shop in London, there is one set of samples for each collection within a line. Each collection is very unique and a different style from the others. Buyers will come in from stores all over the UK and Ireland to purchase inventory for the following season. So all the clothes they ordered this week will not be delivered until around Aug. or Sept. It has been really interesting to see what will be popular next season!

Tuesday I visited the Vincent Van Gogh exhibit at the Royal Academy of Arts. The building was stunning to go along with the tortured artist work inside. The exhibit was packed even after being open for four weeks already, everyone eager to witness the genius letters and work of Vincent’s insanity. It was amazing to see, there are no photos or pictures that can be looked at to compare to his work that is now etched in my thoughts, he uses the most creative and twisted, thick vibrant colors to work out his emotions. It was the best exhibit I have been to by far.

Wednesday was another interesting day at work. I worked again with the buyers for an online shop. The market was different selling them as well, every article had to be able to be photographed well. I was interesting to see what articles of clothing they picked out in comparison to other buyers. After a long day of work, the day light hours are finally starting to stay a little longer, 2 minutes per day. I get off work at five and usually its dark but today it wasn’t so I took a walk down the main shopping street in London, Oxford St., which is also where I work.  I walked through some stores and into the famously cheap store Primark, I am not keen on spending money on clothes here just because the exchange is to devastating but its nice to look.  I took the bus home to see the city lights in the park and around the city. I watched some of the Olympics when I got back, its been really exciting to watch the athletes as well as here the commentary from a British perspective. I am a little obsessed with the Olympics, its always been a small dream of mine to work for them, so these two weeks I am mesmerized by all the talent and personal motivation the athletes have. It is inspiring to watch people excel.

Thursday was filled with 6 hours of consecutive classes, as always, the first three hours were very interesting. I am taking a British Popular culture class and we went to a temple. We got to sit in on a lecture by one of the monks in the building and hear about his religion and traditional worship. It was a great taste of culture. After a painful three hours of International Marketing, Thursday night is spent preparing for the weekend and numerous papers and presentations I have due next week before Spring Break! With working 20 hours a week and having 15 hours of class, the week flies by but at the same time is long and stressful! If you have ever had the impression that work school wouldn’t take time when you are abroad, think again. Before each class there are required readings that correspond with the lecture as well as usually a paper to follow due the following week. It doesn’t seem like a lot but 4 papers a week with work can become a bit stressful!

Friday is my only day off during the week, the sun was out and it would have been a great day to walk around but it was cold and my work was looming over my head. I went to CAPA, and ended up working on internships for the summer all day. I never even started my paper! We made plans to go to an Irish Pub that evening, O’Neil’s to hear a live band and just relax after a long week. It is located in Piccadilly Circus, which is a lively part of town, filled with clubs promoters, pubs, authentic cuisine, and people everywhere. We had met some Irish men the first week out in London and upon going to this bar, we wondered if we would see them again. It was pretty funny when we walked in and surprisingly enough carrot top’s look alike from the first week in London was standing at the bar. They were nice and the live music and drinks were a great hit off for the weekend.

Saturday morning I woke up the bright sun shinning through my window, I was eager to go outside and walk around since, I had never seen the sky look so blue and clear in London before. With my papers still in the back of my mind, I was convinced that I could not waste this sunny day in London on papers! Two of my roommates and I headed to walk through Hyde Park. The weather was beautiful, few clouds in the sky and the warmth of the sunlight was very much needed. There were families out everywhere, people rollerblading, biking, paddle boating in the lake and birds flying all through the park. It was the perfect day to walk and soak up the amazing scene of Princess Diana’s house and monument, the peter pan statue, and so many other historical landmarks in the park. We stopped for lunch at the end of the park at a famous pub, then ventured back through the other side of the park. In total we walked for about 5miles it was a great way to spend the afternoon. I spent the night tackling my presentation and papers and made some good progress.

Today, Sunday we spent the morning mapping out plans for the first few days in Rome. We went for a quick grocery trip to make chili before we were off to spend the sunset at a Chinese New Year’s Celebration in Trafalgar Square. When we arrived in Chinatown there were hundreds of lanterns hung in the ally’s and a traditional man in a dragon performing a celebration dance. People were gathered everywhere to be a part of the celebration. We watch some traditional dances, acrobatic Chinese yoyo, and other parts that made the celebration unique. Chinese New Years is celebrated on Feb. 14th the date, but the actual celebration correlates with the lunar schedule, tonight is a full moon!

Happy Chinese New Year! Next week will be eventful. We are attending the Alice and Wonderland movie premiere and planning out in detail out trip through Rome, Florence, Cinque Terre, and Milan!



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