January 8, 2006|Posted in: Uncategorized
Missive From Mia
hi mom-today is very cold and drizzly. the last couple of days hasn’t been unbearable cold but i have to say today is quite close. linds and i got up and went grocery shopping at sansburys. i had all i could carry in two bags and it only cost me £13!(they aren’t like us gluttonous americans filling up carts at costco. they have small baskets and it’s pretty much expected that you’ll go to the market three times a week or so. amanda almost always comes home with a small bag with tea cookies or milk.)
i’m a bit sad today. not really sad but just sorta down. don’t know if it’s the weather or how absolutely sore and aching my entire body is or the fact that we have been ALL over looking for this stupid store called ASDA (like target or walmart) and everyone keeps giving us wrong directions and we finally stopped off at covent garden at an internet cafe to look it up, plus check in (what i’m doing now, here).
i don’t know if everything is starting to sink in or what, but it’s a different sort of mood than i have been in, is all. i’m sure i will have more as soon as i gather myself and just like you said, settle into what is “normal.”all the girls here are absolutely beautiful and stylish and look amazing, despite the weather. i hate it! i feel like no matter what i look like leaving the house, it just doesn’t compare. i tried to explain to lindsay but she thought i was joking and laughed “at least you are warm.” darnit. i hope you know what i mean.
i know it sounds dumb and trivial, especially considering where i am but i just find it frustrating. i also feel like “why haven’t we met anyone yet?” i pictured myself looking fabulously snug and walking arm in arm with dozens of new british friends! haha – why can’t this be?? 🙂 i’m sure it will be as wonderful as i imagined, once i get a job etc. but it seems funny. i know there is no way i could have ever really prepared than actually being here.
as for the house: linds and i get full range use of the kitchen (we each get a shelf for snacks and shelf in the fridge. not a whole lot of space. we’ll often have to stop for fresh fruit etc) the two of us share our own bathroom, so not bad. there is no shower, just a bath! i’ll get used to that, for sure. she has no animals, just a friend who comes over every friday night to make supper and watch a BBC soap. we are invited to join, of course.
starbucks tastes differently — soy must be different. i can’t even find in the markets! i wonder about the mochas? but i walked up and ordered “double tall soy latte” without even thinking, felt embarrased , but he just smiled and wrote it. they are everywhere, though not at bad as at home.
monday will be my first day on my own. it’s our official job searching day and we agreed that we should not venture together, as we will not have as much luck. i’m going to start in camden market and work my way down into our neighborhood. i bought a week long tube pass, an “oyster card” which has it’s very own unique # and totally belongs to me. only the people who ride the tube indefinitely have them so i’m starting to feel like a londoner! (instead of inserting your paper ticket, like on bart, you pass your card over a scanner. you go through much quicker and don’t have to stop for a minute! it looks very cool and smooth, once you get it just right. it was about £22 for the week, which i had already spent on buying day passes the last few days. if i end up getting a job that requires much tube switching, i might get a monthly one. lots to think about, in starting the job search.
i’ve listened to myself talk and can’t hear the traces of any accent. YET! 🙂 i love you so so much. i love our emails. i love that you tell me about the brit lit. i want to go get some good books to read, especially if i’ll be commuting the average 45 min to work! i’m also glad for the phone though, cuz hearing your voice is quite possibly the sweetest music! 🙂 haha. seriously though, i love it.
lots of love, kisses, hugs and such.
Julia Park Tracey is an award-winning journalist, author, and blogger. She is the author of six books: three novels, one poetry collection, and two women's history. She was the Poet Laureate of Alameda, California, in 2014-17. She's also the conservatrix of The Doris Diaries, the diaries of her great-aunt Doris Bailey Murphy. She has a BA in journalism from San Francisco State University, and MA in Early 20th C. British Literature from Cal State Hayward. Julia's articles have appeared on Salon, Thrillist, Paste, Scary Mommy, Narratively, Yahoo News, Your Tango, and Sweatpants & Coffee. Her articles have also run in Redbook, Woman's Day, Country Living, House Beautiful, Town & Country, the San Francisco Chronicle, Oakland Magazine, Quill, and MadeLocal. She was the founding editor of weekly Alameda Sun and literary zine Red Hills Review. Her poetry has been in The East Bay Literary review, Postcard Poems, Americus Review, Cicada, Tiferet Review, and many others. Julia has been recognized several times by the San Francisco, East Bay and Peninsula Press Clubs as well as the California Newspaper Association for her blogging since 2003.