Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Study? Who studies?

It's going by so fast it's ridiculous.

Sunday was Stake Conference. It was really good.

Monday I wrote a ten page paper about W. H. Auden and war poetry. I can't remember if I blogged about that or not. It was quite the process but I felt pretty good about it. Took roughly six hours or so. After that I went out to dinner with Daniel Tsoi and the young men from my South Kensington Portuguese-speaking Branch. It was me, Daniel, other Daniel, Pedro, Carlos, and Mark. We went to Gormet Burger Kitchen on Daniel. He got us all BBQ Burgers, Oreo shakes, and fries. He also ordered some garlic mayo dipping sauce that was insane. I'll be burping garlic for a week. They also surprised me with a Union Jack flag that they all passed around the table and signed. Pedro's dedication will be forever at GBK because the sharpie bled through onto the table. They're great kids and the world is ready for them. Daniel is an incredible leader and he's doing a fantastic job. Talented man.

Pedro, Daniel, Yours Truly, Mark, Carlos - Photo taken by Daniel Tsoi

Tuesday was a BYU "reading" (aka party) day. People here were starting to hunker down and study for Wednesday/Thursday finals, but with my papers done, two easy finals left (Religion and London Walks) and my portfolio coming along, I was due for some tourism. I left at 9am, mailed some stuff to myself so I don't have to carry it around Rome, and decided I'd hit the British Museum and then the National Gallery. And I decided that I'd knock each one out entirely. If you're not aware, it's kind of an insane idea. I spent three hours at the British Museum and four at the National Gallery. I saw a statue from Easter Island (is there a place on earth that England didn't rape in its colonial period?), a sweet sculpture of Hercules's head, a SWEET exhibit on the history of clocks (clocks are so cool), some skeletons, tablets written on in Babylonian, Albrecht Durer's drawing "The Rhinoceros", a beautiful exhibit on Japanese art including an ivory carving of blind men crawling all over an elephant (I know, right?), and the David Vases.

Durer's The Rhinoceros

Sweetest plate ever. Made in...Japan. Suck it, China.

The Aptly Named Blind Men Crawling on an Elephant

Then I walked to the National Gallery. The weather has finally gotten nice here in London and it is gorgeous. Trees have flowers all over them and everything. The National Gallery is unreal. Here's a list of the paintings that I thought were exceptionally cool (best of the best in bold):

  • Hans Holbein the Younger - The Ambassadors
  • Joachim Beuckelaer - The 4 Elements Series
  • Jacopo Tintorretto - St. George and the Dragon
  • Bartholome Bermejo - St. Michael Triumphant Over the Devil (The Devil is hilarious)
  • Paulo Uccelo - St. Peter and the Dragon
  • Sandro Botticelli - Venus and Mars
  • Peter Paul Rubens - An Autumn Landscape w/a View of Het Steen
  • " " - The Coup de Lance (Powerful depiction of the crucifixion)
  • " " - Samson and Delilah (Beautiful)
  • " " - Minerva Protects Pax from Mars
  • " " - The Brazen Serpent
  • Roelandt Savery - Orpheus
  • Nicolas Poussin - Sacraments Series
  • " " - Landscape With a Man Killed By a Snake (Who wouldn't like a painting with that name?)
  • Karel Dujardin - The Conversion of St. Paul
  • Rembrand - Self Portrait at the age of 63. (Rembrandt is incredible. Hands down the best portrait artist to grace this planet.)
  • Gerrit van Honthorst - St. Sebastian (Finally St. Seabass looks like he's in pain from the arrows that are sticking out of his body.)
  • Cornelis van Haarlem - Two Followers of Cadmus Devoured By a Dragon (Coolest painting EVER!)
  • Annibale Carvacci - The Dead Christ Mourned
  • Salvator Rosa - Witches at Their Incantations (Wicked creepy. And awesome.)
  • Luca Giordano - Perseus Turning Phineas and His Followers to Stone
  • John Constable - Salisbury Cathedral From the Meadows
  • Theodore Gericault - A Shipwreck (Same artist that did Raft of the Medusa.)
  • Renoir - The Umbrellas
  • Pierre Cecile Puvis de Chavannes - Beheading of St. John the Baptist (SWEET depiction).
  • Van Gogh - Wheatfield With Cypresses

After leaving the National Gallery (sorry, no pics allowed), it was gorgeous outside and I didn't feel like going home, so I walked to Big Ben. I freaking love Big Ben. I'm going to miss him when I leave. I could seriously just stare at that clock for hours on end. It's so great.

Wednesday (today) I woke up, ate breakfast, played my favorite time-killer game online called Bowman (stick figures that shoot bows and arrows at each other), studied half an hour for my religion final, owned my religion final, and went to see Les Miserables with Britin. She wanted vegetarian food, and I was not about to go with her, so after we got tickets and before the show I went to my favorite restaurant in Chinatown, The Crispy Duck. I got E-Fu noodles with crab meat and Chinese mushrooms. SO good. I walked to the fountain at Picadilly Circus to sit and eat. I realized just how integrated I am into this city. I have a favorite restaurant in China Town for crying out loud. How sweet is that? Not gonna lie...with Mom and Dad moving out of our neighborhood and away from our ward this summer, London is officially home. I don't think it's hit me that I'm leaving, but I really hope it doesn't until I'm long gone.

That'll make it easier. Hopefully.


Kristy said...

We've totally loved your posts. Even though you didn't do exactly the same things as Macy, you've helped to fill in some blanks and help us to visualize what she (and you) is experiencing. You're a talented writer and will be forever known as the "Jack Black" look-alike that was in London with Macy. Thanks Calvin!
Macy's Parents (Kristy & Brad Falke)

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