It’s Friday afternoon, and I’ve been having such a wonderful time that I haven’t had a chance to post.
Yesterday I planned out a precisely timed sequence of, washing, drying, eating lunch, going to supervision, getting my hair cut, and meeting with my supervisor, not necessarily in that order. I managed to get almost all of them done, and done well, although the barber claimed to have a hangover on Thursday from the amount he’d drunk Sunday, and generally failed to demonstrate that he understood what was going on around him. For example, despite a continuous conversation for most of the incredibly slow half-hour haircut, he never realized I was an American, indeed, he explicitly pegged me as British. I definitely haven’t picked up a British accent.
After dinner, Chris, the same guy who had wangled me into the boatclub dinner without a ticket, wangled myself and Tom into a Cambridge Union debating society despite none of us being members of this members-only club. His skills are quite impressive. The debate was on the topic “This House Loves the 1980’s,” and listening to experienced debaters wage lighthearted verbal warfare over such a ridiculous topic* was extremely entertaining.
Today I had another supervision, which went well enough, and then lunch with my hitch partner and friends. Lunch was overpriced but wonderful eggs benedict and excellent conversation, after which we went shopping for essentials for our trip. We bought a roadmap of Europe, tourbooks of France and Spain, and a wonderfully enormous sketch pad for making signs. The pad is A1 size, which, when folded out to use the back of one sheet and the front of the next, provides over 6’6″ of room. Together with a handful of markers, we should be plenty visible.
I should really start packing, but I don’t have too much time. In 45 minutes I have to pick up my rucksack and sleeping bag from the hitch coordinator, and then I’m going out to dinner with my hitch partner. I’m slightly worried about this trend toward eating every meal with my hitch partner, seeing as we’ll definitely be doing that once the hitch starts (the rules forbid you to split up even if you want to). On the plus side, I can’t imagine a better person to spend the trip with; she’s even planning on bringing my favorite book that I’ve never read, Gödel Escher Bach.
I’m very excited, and more than slightly scared.
* People old enough to remember the 80’s: my generation has a very strange vision of this decade. We connect the 80’s, more than anything else, with music. Really awful music. (It seems to have escaped our attention that today’s super-popular music is no better.) We find any reference to the 80’s intrinsically hilarious. This phenomenon is as universal as it is inexplicable.