March 12th, 2007


Spring to Deadlines

The weather is perfectly tuned at the moment to take my mind off this last essay slalom. The clear blue skies, fading to gold and roses in the evenings, and the plethora of greenery determined to forge an early Spring. The cool breeze seems to be a plea from Winter that it's not gone yet, but nature simply doesn't listen. I could imagine sitting by a lake or stream, at the table in my country garden, with a book, or friends, a glass of fruit's beautiful.

Sadly, this is perhaps the one week that I get the least time to do things. Two essays due on Thursday, and I was too shattered from both the exhaustion of last week's German Aufsatz and a cold that basically immobilised me this weekend. I was going to spend Saturday working at the Open Day and earning some money again, but when I awoke on Friday, realised the briefing was in quarter of an hour, and rushed to campus with a splitting headache, it turned out that Founders Lecture Theatre was being used for literature instead. I checked my e-mails to see whether I had the wrong location, but no location had been given. I could only assume that only those who replied to the initial 'still want to work?' e-mail within a week got the notification. I got the e-mail the same evening I left for Berlin. I could have gone to talk to the EILO people who organise it, but I had a horrid cold that meant I spent the rest of the day in bed, and I didn't want to risk spending a day outside directing cars with a head feeling like an elephant's trampoline.

So...I'm about to embark upon yet another pressured mid-week with little sleep, constant stress, and books and journal articles galore. I can probably stretch things to Friday, but it's another two-essays-one-deadline from History. It's about this point in the term I get sick of essays, after doing 3 of them, but I've still the two for German left, which I will this time start shortly after the History deadline, and not the week they are due in. There is silver lining. Beyond that, I'll have no essays until the Report I'll need to do on my Year Abroad, and that's a year off. Yes, there will be exams, but that's a different kind of stress. I can't say I'll be unhappy to see this year's essay list fade away: I've seldom been so stressed in focus before, even with my few essay madnesses last year.

Collapse ) I'm still undecided, and I don't have time to be anymore. Gah.

So German Aufsatz (essay). I had planned to initially cover the History & Situation of Stendal, with an interview with my Great Aunt. I thought a study on the internal differences in Germany, both East-West but also North-South would be fascinating. However, I didn't have the time, so I was left with my backup topic of the Berlin U-Bahn (Underground/Subway) and S-Bahn (Metro) systems. However, I had to deal with a presentation on Romanticism first, so I stayed up most of Tuesday/Wednesday night getting that sorted...except I ran out of time. The presentation was cancelled, and rather than move my topic once again, I was graded on my practice presentation back in November...which, happily, was a very good one. However, I lost a night, and ended up typing up 2200 words in German in 22 hours, although I lost two essays through going to my East Asia seminar, which was pretty pointless, as I couldn't concentrate on it at all anyhow. I managed it in the end, however, although only through luck, and it remains almost entirely unchecked, so I'm fully aware my grammar will be terrible. The subject is also rather dry, although I've tried to highlight the interesting things (I couldn't care less about different gauges, but the seperation of the network into two during the GDR was interesting).

Here it is...Collapse )