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Here are a few more words and phrases that some people say here in the UK. Keep in mind that not everyone says these words, but these words are not usually used in the US. Since my flatmates are from different parts in the UK, they each say different sayings. But here they are…

Banter: Playful conversation

Cheeky:  it is a word used to describe someone who does something or says something sort of disrespectful and sometimes rude, but says it in a cunning way. Urban Dictionary

Munter: an ugly person. Urban Dictionary

Mingin: horrible/disgusting

Boost: Let’s go…”Let’s boost”

Steamin’/Blazin’/Wrecked/Fleein‘/Gassed/ Battered: drunk

Wee: little (used in Scotland)

Good shout: good idea

Brilliant: good

Mint: good

Crackin’: good

Dossing about/ dos: Bumming around/ to bum around

Pish: rubbish

Dodgy/iffy: sketchy

Lush (used in Northern England): used as “good” for things you eat and see

Cringe: bad…Urban Dictionary

Sound: an alright/good guy

On your tod: on your own…not with people

Chav/Ned: Someone who’s parents ignored them and now they drink too much, get pregnant, swear a lot, terrorize elderly people, scum, low life. Wears a track suit and starts fights

Pure: if you say it infront of a descriptive word like “pure brilliant” it means really brilliant

Whitey: to be sick after drunk

Cove: Man or guy (used in Lewis an island in Northern Scotland)

Are you wise?: Are you stupid (used in Lewis: an island in Northern Scotland)

Boke: about to get sick or making you feel sick

Stinkin’: ugly

Bumbag: Fanny pack

Scadge: I am going to go crazy or someone who is disgusting

Waffle/ Sprafin’/ Wittering : talking too much

Boot/bint: strict

Braw/that was braw: that was really good

A girl is braw: a girl is really pretty

Quid: pound (money)

Fiver: five pounds (money)

Dobber: idiot

Twat: stupid person

Howler: bad

Screamer: good…it is so good it was entertaining

Boot: Trunk of a car

Can’t be bothered/ Cannae be arsed: can’t be bothered…my flatmates say “I can’t be bothered” all the time!

Two of my flatmates (Alistair and Steph) were turning 19, so we had a birthday party for both of them. We decided to have a kids birthday party in the flat with baloons, games, and snacks. The theme was 1960s! Everyone had to dress up too! So, a few days before the party we made a list of snacks to buy for the party. When you host a party don’t you always have chips and salsa? Well not in the UK! I was shocked! I suggested that we should have chips and dip, maybe hummus and pita bread, or veggie dip, or crackers. Instead they went to the grocery store and came back with sausage, sausage rolls (little sausages covered in a pastry), sandwiches cut in triangles (cheese and cucumber sandwich and  ham sandwich), and sausage, cheese, and pinneaple on a toothpick. Then one of my flatmates handed me a smallish bag of tortilla chips and said, “Here Justine, these are for you.” I was basically the only one who ate them.  I am just shocked that the party food was so different because a lot of things are very similar to the US. So the day of the party came and some people helped decorate the flat while others helped prepare the food. There was a lot of food at the party. The plates of food were all put out onto the table. I saw a plate with just sausage cut into small peices. I asked, “Do you eat these with your hands?” Some people giggled. And then they said, “Yes!” Personally I prefered the food that I usually have a parties. The sausage rolls were ok, but not great. And it was very unusual to try sausage, cheese, and pinneaple together on a toothpick! I definitely enjoyed the desserts….yummm (not the burnt cookies..haha). After we ate some (or a lot) of food, we played musical chairs!

It was fun dressing up in 1960s clothes. I decided to be a hippie, so I bought a brown leather vest at a vintage clothes shop. The rest of the outfit I owned. Other people decided to go more flowery, not as hippie, and everyone looked great! I went to the music library to get a mix CD of the best hits of the 1960s. We listened to that most of the night until we turn on Lady Gaga (for Alistair). Afterwards we went to the pub right next to our flat. Here are some pictures…

Musical Chairs

Peace

Here is a list of words that Americans use and people from the UK use…

American word vs. UK word

Bangs = Fringe

Pants = Trousers

Grilled Cheese Sandwich = Tostie

Sidewalk = Pavement

Studying = Revising

Movie = Film

Grocery Store = Supermarket or shops

Trash = Rubbish

Utensils = Cutlery

Laundry = Washing

Laundry Detergent = Washing Powder

Band-Aid = Plaster

Purse = Handbag

Wallet (women’s wallet) = Purse

Highway = Motorway

Soccer = Football

Sweatshirt = Hoodie

Sweatpants = Track suit bottoms/joggers/ trackies

Sweater = Jumper

Sneakers = Trainers

Dinner = Tea

New Town

The other day I decided to go over to “New Town.” This is actually not that new…it was built in the late 1700s and early 1800s. I just walk about 10 minutes from my flat and I am in New Town. Because my flat and University is in the Old Town, I have not explored the New Town a lot. So I walked to Charlotte Square. At Charlotte Square, there is the headquarters for the National Trust for Scotland, the National Archives, and a historic home called the Georgian House. It was nice that I had time to wander and visit all three places. The National Trust was located in a beautiful building and had an exhibit in one room. In the Archives, I could not see much because the stacks were closed, but there was an interesting exhibit. The Georgian house is recreated to look like it did in the 1700s. There was an introductory video and then a self guided tour. Just when I think I know a lot about Edinburgh, I always find something new and exciting.

I am sitting in the living room right now looking at the snow falling from the sky. Yes, there is snow here…and it is almost April! This reminds me of the first day I arrived here. The sidewalks were covered in slush and it was so slippery.

I finished classes last Thursday, so for the last few days my flatmates and I have just been watching movies. It was great! But most of them are going home for about a week for Easter holiday. Tomorrow morning Josie and Sarah are leaving, so Alistair and I are the only ones left in the flat. It has been weird the past few days just watching movies and only having about 5 people here, but it is a nice change. Over the break I plan to do a lot of things around Edinburgh. Today I visited the Scottish Parliament. The building from the outside is very modern (and in my opinion, I think it is ugly), but after taking the tour, I learned to like the building a little bit more. I want to go back and hear a debate at the parliament. Next week, I am going to visit Steph (my flatmate) at her house. She lives in the highlands in Forres, which is 30 minutes from Inverness. I am so excited! And then on April 13th, we are having a joint Birthday party for Steph and Alistair…and the theme is the 1960s! We have to dress up, and there will be music from the 1960s. Then afterwards, we will go to a pub all dressed up in our 1960s attire…I can’t wait. A few days after the B-day party, Lindsay and I are going to London for 4 days. We have already booked our hotel and train tickets. It is pretty exciting because neither of us have been there before. We are also planning an Ireland trip after that. So even though the next few days might be quiet, I just have to think that there are so many great things happening in a few weeks!

Guess what?

Guess what? I only have 2 more weeks of classes! Didn’t I just get here? It seems like it was January 7th a few days ago and I was boarding a plane at Dulles airport. Nope, that was over 2 months ago. Well, the old saying is right, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” So you are probably wondering when I am going back to the US if I only have 2 more weeks of classes. Well, there is a 3 week spring break here and Final Exams are spread out through a month. So for me, I have 3 final exams all in the same week (May 10 – 14). That means I have a six week spring break. Yeah, I wish I had a 6 week spring break every year! So during that time I am definitely going to travel to London and stay there for 3 nights. As for other plans, I am not so sure. I know I will be taking a lot of day trips to places in Scotland and even northern England. I will visit friends who are studying abroad in Ireland in May (when they are not traveling themselves). Also, I really want to go to Paris. I don’t know who else wants to go, but maybe a lot of things I will plan last minute.

Even though I do have a long spring break, I will enjoy just being in Edinburgh. Some of my flatmates will be going home just for a week, so I think there will always be people around here. I have a list of things to do here and I plan to do a lot of them during the break. This includes Flashlight Tag and Capture the Flag! I am so excited!

I just have to write a few short essays for my  Archaeology class and then I will begin my break! I know these 2 weeks will fly by just like the last 2 months have!

I am sitting in my room and I just heard a loud noise outside. I opened the curtain and peered down into the street below. A man in a cape and a painted white face walks along the sidewalk. A short man runs away in a zig-zag formation looking like he just made that noise. A few people shout. About 10 or so people are following the caped man. Yup, it is another ghost tour. This has not been the first time I have seen a ghost tour. I have probably seen 3 or 4 from my window. There are so many different types of ghost tours in Edinburgh. That one was obviously very dramatic where people jump out and scare the tour. I went on 2 ghost tours where we looked at the hidden vaults underneath the city. One was a more historical tour and the other was a paranormal tour. I liked both of them because they were different. On the paranormal tour, we used a electromagnetic reader to see if there are any ghosts. The historical ghost tour told us stories about the people who used to live there. Maybe next time I look down at the street and see a person with a cloak and a painted white face it won’t be a tour guide, but and actual ghost…boo!

Sorry it has taken me so long to write this post. I have been pretty busy the last few weeks.

On Saturday February 27th,  I left at 8:30 in the morning to on a weekend trip with the International Student Center. There were 90 of us all on 3 different busses. We were going on a tour with the Haggis tour company. So the whole weekend we went to many different places around Loch Lomond. The best part was our hostel! It was an old mansion! Here are the pictures…

Loch Lomond

 

Loch Lomond Youth Hostel

Ceilidh (dance) in the Hostel

For my Architectural History class I have to write an essay about a building in Edinburgh. I decided to write about the Public Library because I love the library and I love the building. So today I went to take pictures inside the library. While I was taking my last picture a librarian came up to me and said that there is no photography allowed in the building. Luckily I already got the pictures I needed for my essay, but I am still a little confused why no photos are allowed. Usually people are not allowed to take photos because the flash could ruin a historic object…but I do not think that is their concern. It is probably some legal reason…maybe I will ask them. Anyways, my next stop was the Royal Commission on the Anciet and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS). My tutor told us to go there in order to find plans and other photos of our building. Since I could not find any floor plans or elevations I decided to go there. It was like a 10 – 15 minute walk down Nicholson St./ Clerk St. I got there and told the receptionist that I am looking for the floor plans of the library. She told me to sign in and gave me a badge. Then she said that I have to put my coat and backpack in the coat and locker room. There was a sign in there that said NO PENS ARE ALLOWED IN THE LIBRARY. After I took my jacket and backpack off I walked upstairs to the library. I immediately walked to the person sitting at the desk because the whole library was intimidating. I just asked him how to find what I am looking for. He showed me on the computer all of the plans and pictures for the library. I printed them off and I did not even need to look at the original document because they were all digitized. I ran into another student from my tutorial working on the same project. I did also see many people who had large floor plans on big tables and were analyzing them. Then I saw rows and rows of boxes which I assumed had photographs.  I think it would be the best job ever to work there. They have all the photographs and plans of almost every building in Scotland! Ok, I might be exaggerating, but I would love to work there. I love looking at old photographs (as many people know) and digitizing them too. So after I printed off what I needed I had to go. But if I could, I would just spend days looking at all the historic photos. I guess you have to have a purpose to look at them. Here are some pictures of the Public Library in Edinburgh (Central Library)…

So yesterday I was walking out of the Public Library (which is next to The Elephant House) and I saw a few people across the street with lights and other equipment. I was curious, so I went closer. There was a sign that said “Filming in Progress.” I was so excited. In my head I was thinking, “OMG!!” So I calmly asked the guy setting up the equipment what movie they are filming. He said Burke and Hare. I have heard of the story of the murderers Burke and Hare when I was on many tours and ghost tours. Those tour guides mentioned that they were currently filming a film about them. So at that time, there was not a lot going on, but as I walked further I saw a few people standing outside a church dressed in old fashioned clothing with top hats. That was pretty cool. So I went back to my flat and told my flatmates. Some were interested in seeing it and possibly trying to become extras, so Calum, Harry, and I decided to go back. At that time they were preparing to film in a courtyard below the bridge. Right in front of The Elephant House there was a horse in a truck and there was someone in a top hat in the truck. As we aproached the filming location we saw a woman with a professional camera shooting pictures. We were asking some questions about who we were looking at. She seemed like she knew everything…maybe she was paparazzi. Anyways, she said that one man was Simon Pegg (who was Burke) and the other was Andy Serkis (who was Hare). Most people in the UK know who Simon Pegg is, but I have not seen any movies with him in it. But I do know who Andy Serkis is!! Does this ring a bell, “My Precious..”? Yes, he was Gollum (Smeagol) in Lord of the Rings! (He is also the boss in the movie 13 Going on 3o…good movie) It was kind of hard to see them because it was dark and raining, but I tried to get some photos. At that time they were not filming, but they were preparing to film. I am so excited for the movie to come out so I can see it! So afterwards I was curious of other movies filmed in Edinburgh…so I found this website about all the movies filmed here. They are filming Burke and Hare throughout this week, so maybe I will have othe movie star encounters. I will keep you posted.

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