STEPHEN FRY IS COMING TO HKU IN JULY!!!
Oh yes and did I mention that my favourite historian Andrew Roberts will be also there on the same stage on the same day?!
*squees like crazy*
But why, oh WHY did it have to be held on a freaking Saturday of all days when that's the day that I have to go to work?
Anyways, screw that...and screw the fact that the event is already fully registered and that I'm on a waiting list...I am going to go and see them no matter what!
Of course, he too realises that the topic I want to write about is not common among historians and that means more research/discussion on my part...but anyways, I can figure that out when I have a discussion/meeting with him which should be maybe next week seeing that it's a holiday on July 1st?
EDIT: Decided to meet him next week, probably on Tuesday afternoon. *must get to reading/preparing as much as she can before then*
I doubt whether the students at HKU will do that just to get a free drink. *raises brow*
I've also remembered that April 1st is also Fred and George Weasley's birthday (according to JKR) so yeah...(I know I'm too waaay into HP for my own good)
Oh, and I also need to change the monthly poem thing in my sidebar. *sigh* So many things to do.
I think I know what I want to write about for my undergrad dissertation next year: medical services in Wellington's Army during the Napoleonic Wars and maybe do a comparison of the medical services in Napoleon's armies. Or investigate whether the experience during the Napoleonic Wars had any effect on domestic medicine/politics/society. Did the British govt actually care about the services/health of its men, etc. Hmm...must think about that.
But OMG, I just found out that only ONE book has been written on Wellington's medical services.
And I have to order it online. -___-
If only I could go to the UK myself and get it. *sigh* It'd be MUCH easier that way.
Oh yes, and it's now the Easter holidays here...no lectures/classes till Wednesday, thank goodness. It will give me time to prepare for my two essays which are due in the third week of April and probably will induce me to write nearly 6000 words in total (each needs about 3000 words)...ah, who says a being a student is easy? I certainly don't think so.
Gah, I'll be 20 in a week (pretty scary) and wondering what I'm going to do over reading week which starts this week. Obviously I have to go to a make up lecture on Tuesday since we missed one class due to the prof getting ill while on Thursday, I have to give in this reading assignment for another history class. Oh, and I have get to thinking about what topics to do for my history essays since the deadlines are coming pretty soon. Yup, seems like I have LOTS to think about over reading week...I just hope that my mind stays focused and not randomly veer off to do useless stuff like playing computer games...XDDD
And yes, I am so sure that the professor sounds so much like Hugh Grant. Even my mum says so.
Plus nearly all the examples given in the lectures are from Britain or British history...always something interesting to me, of course. I smiled when we had to watch Tony Richardson's The Charge of the Light Brigade (since by coincidence, I'd already seen the film last year) and it was actually revolving around an event I sort of knew (the Crimean War).
However, alas, Wednesdays this term always have to tempered by the most boring lecture ever (about energy once again)...I thought the format of the lectures would have changed by now but nope, we're still listening to the lecturer go on and on about processes, definitions, explanations, etc. I left after the first hour since I sadly couldn't take it anymore. I kind of think this is going to be an ongoing process with me with regards to this particular course. I dread even thinking of doing the final exam for this... *sigh*
Some annoying person has kind of stolen one of my fave userpics (my past default one which has a bearded TA gazing intensely at the camera) and used it in their blog without crediting me. Though I'm glad that they appreciate him as much as I do, it kind of pissed me off since I did make them myself and sort of for my own use. I'm probably feeling irrationally over-protective (they aren't my pictures, after all) but still...GRRRR...hence the change of default user pic to the one I'm using now which I made a year ago when my opera obsession had only just started. When I made it, there didn't seem anything special about it but now that I look back, the La Scala Don Giovanni icons are actually quite pretty =) I guess that since I'm talking about this point now, I might as well announce: PLEASE DO NOT TAKE MY ICONS!!! And if you really want them, at least INFORM or CREDIT me before you decide to use them! That also goes for my mood theme.
I really want to go to see Cosi fan tutte at Covent Garden in September but again, HKU is messing up my plans since the term starts at the beginning of September. I have no idea at the moment how to work that out. TA's also doing Cosi in Munich in July, a time when I'll definitely be free and on vacation but seriously, will I be able to manage in Germany when my German is almost non-existent? Plus I have no idea what this production looks like, I know the ROH production much better. But I'll think about that...I might try going to Germany instead if I can't make it to London in September. O_O
HKU has also decided to mess up an opportunity to meet my fellow Allen affectionados in April in London since the deadlines and lectures simply clash with the performance dates...and this is the second time it has foiled a meeting with them. *grumbles* If I was going to Durham instead of HKU, the term wouldn't start until October...thus making going to see Cosi much more easier. *sigh* Out of all the goals I've set for myself, I'm definitely saying to myself that I MUST see TA as Don Alfonso since he is known foremost as a Mozartian and that sadly, I'll never be able to see him in his other celebrated Mozart roles, i.e. Don Giovanni, Count Almaviva, Papageno and Guglielmo for obvious reasons. Probably if I were given a choice to have him play a character that he used to play in the past now, I'd choose the Count. Of course it's a hard choice between the Don and the Count but I must say the latter is more of a favourite for me. To see that live would be fantastic.
The history course I was writing about yesterday did not disappoint. It's definitely the most interesting of courses of this semester and I'm looking forward to the forthcoming lectures...I might actually choose the topic for a dissertation and investigate the sanitary and medical conditions of 19th/early 20th Century Hong Kong and relate them to the Volunteer Corps stationed here or something. Or even see how the British/Canadian POWs managed to keep disease at bay during their internment during WWII. I'm also beginning to think that I might choose the professor as my supervisor as well since he's probably the expert here for such things.
On the other hand, the compulsory science and technology course which came right after the history lecture was simply the most boring lecture in the history of lecture-giving ever. It was all about ENERGY and to have all those various examples of energy (kinetic, electric, potential, renewable etc, etc) just explained to us one after another for TWO hours straight was almost unbearable. Some actually left after the first hour and I was sorely tempted to do the same but being the polite person I am, stayed on...hoping perhaps that the second half was better. It wasn't (even GCSE science was far more interesting) and I'm really wondering how on earth will I be able to sit through the remaining lectures until the end of term. -___-
Term started yesterday...the history courses are okay so far. But seriously, the Cold War course...it's like a repeat of the A level topic that Mr Campion taught. I was like 'OMG, I know all of this already' (not in a boastful tone, of course, more like a bored, tired sort of way). But I was annoyed at myself that I couldn't remember the Soviet version of NATO...gah, it was the Warsaw Pact, you fool! *sighs* Well, at least, I remember when NATO and the Warsaw Pact were set up; 1949 and 1951 respectively. Okay, weird history nerd moment. Hopefully I'll put my previous knowledge to good use and learn something new here though later on. Note to self: get A level textbooks out of their dusty shelves and put them once again to good use.
I'm waiting for the long-awaited history course which I've been excited about since the first time I saw it on the course website last summer and the first class is tomorrow (or more like later this morning since it's like 3.30 now...yes, even I have no idea why I'm still awake at this hour). It's about war and medicine, by the way...from 1800-1950...actually, I think you can understand now why I'm so excited: a) it's about war (and no, despite all appearances, I'm not a militarist...I'm actually more of a pacifist. I'm just happen to be interested (rather weirdly) in military history XD) and b) it covers two centuries, the 19th (woot! Napoleonic warfare should supposedly be included...*crosses fingers*) and the 20th. So yeah, I'm waiting to see how it will turn out. The lecturer's considered to be boring (he's English and sounds uncannily like Hugh Grant when he speaks) but seriously, these students have NOT been to Mr Campion's classes and even I could keep awake during his classes about 95% of the time!!! If I can handle that, this lecturer is certainly fine by me. =)
I've also realised rather recently that I definitely want to try to do further studies for a Master's degree (because everyone knows that getting a BA at HKU is obviously so not enough) and then later on go on to a doctorate. It's gonna be quite a lot of work, I know, but that's one goal I've set for myself now. I'll probably do both of them in history but of course, still practice my creative writing since I also like the idea of being both an academic and a novelist...gives a bit of variety into ones life, I guess. And of course, I'm going to do both of them in the UK, no questions asked. I still have no idea what kind of topic I want to do for my undergrad dissertation though for my final year...I probably can't write about the Napoleonic Wars or European history since obviously I can't get any primary sources for that period over here *sigh* I'm quite interested in investigating colonial rule here just before WWII or even the Battle of Hong Kong or Churchill's opinions about losing HK to the Japanese. I find the idea of looking through old Colonial Office correspondence rather exciting.
Hmm...what else? Oh, Queen is just absolutely the best rock band ever (I've been listening to their songs a lot these days) and I will say once again that Freddie Mercury and Brian May are absolute gods at both singing and the guitar respectively. Opera and my favourite baritone though are still very firmly rooted in my daily life despite all appearances XDD
enserric contributed two lovely Napoleonic War related books to my little 'library' as my Christmas present (I'm still so grateful for you getting them, Yen) which I sadly couldn't receive in person since I happened to be both ill and piled with work at the same time plus I wasn't able to give her her present. *grumbles* My cold still doesn't seem to want to go away...my voice still fluctuates from day to day; one day I can speak probably, the next it's sort of gone again. At the moment, it seems to be stabilising so hopefully it will go away soon.
Gah, better be off to bed now otherwise I'll miss the class I've been waiting for for the past couple of months...and if that happened, I'd look such an idiot. *___*
And no, when I say 'just', I don't mean 'WTF, why can't I get a higher grade, etc, etc', I mean how on earth did I manage to get such a high grade in the first place? Totally unexpected. The history of opera part though was a B but I'm not complaining since I wasn't really sure of what I was writing in the first place (I was in a rush and didn't really bother to check if everything was right...-___-)
Ha, looks like focusing obsessively on opera productions with TA in it really paid off, lol.
The high point of 2009 for me was most definitely getting a lovely and totally unexpected handwritten card from a certain operatic baritone whose name I will not mention since I'm too shy to say so publicly...I'm still in disbelief whether as to he really wrote back to me. *thanks profusely him once again for being so generous to an almost anonymous fan* And yes, I would so totally rewind and go back to the moment I realised what I was holding and reading in my hands...the feeling was incredible!
One fond memory of 2009 is hanging out with x_reggg and enserric at Elements over the summer...that was probably the most fun get-together of the year for me seeing that I was and still am totally lacking in social life at HKU. This could be rivaled though by the little escapade we had at the airport to see off cerulean88 to the States on January 1st of all days! Oh, and watching the sixth HP film was simply awesome...SNAPE!!! *clears throat loudly after her sudden fangirling* Mr Wray coming to my prize giving ceremony in November was also nice and memorable. It was wonderful to see him again. Plus 2009 has been pretty great regarding my personal interest and progress in understanding and enjoying a rather new (give and take, lol) interest: opera. I've made two lovely friends as a result of this and the ensuing emails and discussions really helped in keeping my mind sane over the year!
Low points? Eh, don't want to dwell on them too much...but being still stuck at HKU and being unable to go to Durham was REALLY a total point for me this year. Ah well...I'll try to at least visit the UK next year *crosses fingers*...hello 2010!
I seriously thought I would never ever be able to do this but since both this essay and exam is tomorrow, my mind is simply forcing my tired, aching body to work anyway. I just hope that I can hold out and that tomorrow I'll be okay and not have to miss the exam. I really don't want to imagine me passing out halfway through... =((
Thankfully though the essay is the one about opera and that makes it doesn't seem so bad since I have some opportunity to fangirl about a particular production/singer/etc.
Just holding on to the fact that after tomorrow, my term here is finally over till January 11! =))
So relieved now that I only have two more essays to write...managed to finish one earlier today and goodness was I glad to be rid of it at last! [I was so desperate for info to back up my argument about British national identity that I ended up inserting a quote from TA...so sad of me, I know) I was actually planning to at least make a start on the one due on Thursday but nah, I'm not bothered, esp. after just finishing one today. Did some sketching instead (always good since I haven't sketched in ages...) and ended up drawing TA as the Count and Ferruccio Furlanetto as Figaro from the 1991 Salzburg production (my favourite one so far): phantomphan1990.deviantart.com/art/Se-
Right, that was random...what else can I post up here? Oh...right, it was the prize-giving presentation last Wednesday (and believe it or not, I actually managed to wear that 'Snape' coat of mine seeing that I didn't have and didn't want to wear a suit jacket thing on that cold evening...enserric will be so proud, lol). Expectedly, I was the only foreigner on the list (that meaning not Cantonese or Chinese) but I was surprised that Jade or Joey didn't get anything since I expected them to be the top of their classes like they were at SIS. Argh but I had to wear heels (first time since graduation last May, believe it or not!) and my god...they were nearly the end of me. They also caused a little bit of embarrassment for me when I was on my way to prepare to go onstage (by going around the hall) and I spotted Mr Wray silently giving me his congratulations. Either I was startled by seeing him or the floor was slippery and I nearly slipped in front of him, causing him to look quite concerned...-____- Fortunately though, I didn't fall over and continued to go round the hall though of course, inwardly chastising myself for looking such a fool...yes, I am such a graceful creature, I know.
The ceremony was a joke...the certificate which was awarded to us onstage wasn't actually the real one (WTF? Even SIS gave the real one onstage) and later we were asked to give in the fake one for our real one half an hour after the ceremony. *rolls eyes* The guest of honour awarded the certificates and not the vice-chancellor who was supposed to give them out as well. Gah, once again, I'm expecting too much from this university. But I did manage to take a photo with Mr Wray afterwards (he's leaving SIS after this school year and heading to Canada, btw...and so I thought it would be a good time to give him a farewell present and card last Wednesday.) My mum and I promised to see him again at the SIS fair this coming Friday so that's one thing to look forward to this week, I suppose. And damn, I still need to pick up my A-level certificates...has everyone collected them already though? I hope they aren't going to throw them away! (Idiotic thought, I know, but it's possible)
I guess I better get back to writing my essay which is due tomorrow...*sighs*
Damn it, Reg. You're to blame for this XDDDD
And thank goodness that my group presentation for Belgium and the Netherlands is finally over and done with (just my luck to have to talk about the most complicated bit of their identities...their overly chaotic past and political systems!)...I just wish that my professor (yes, the one I'm doing my internship with just happened to do the same topic we did) didn't keep on referring back to me when he did his presentation afterwards, e.g. 'Oh, as Christy mentioned earlier', 'Hmm...Christy had a better map than mine' or 'Anyway, she's already mentioned this before' since people kept on looking at me and believe me, I wanted to disappear into my chair out of embarrassment.
*is quite sleepy now for some weird reason*
But what's done is done and he's coming all the same...she tried getting Mrs Mathieson and Mr Campion to come as well but they surprisingly don't remember me even though it's only been a year since I left! Too many students to deal with, I guess, even in that short space of time.
I feel immensely sleepy for some reason...gah, can we have Reading Week NOW so I can have a valid reason to laze around?
Germany in episode 32 of Hetalia was hilarious...and him singing the end song was pretty interesting. It's also interesting that they tweaked some of the lyrics as well to fit his character.
And yes, x_reggg is going to laugh madly when she sees I'm making yet another Hetalia post on LJ...-___-
As for uni stuff...I am sooo happy that the books I have to review won't be due until the beginning of October, thank goodness...seeing that the professor finally found out that the book is almost near impossible to find. That's one load off my mind at the moment...
The typhoon last night was scary actually...I'm not one to be scared by typhoons but the one last night was pretty strong. I just wish that the rules at HKU allowed you the whole day off when there's a signal 8 rather than if 'the signal is hoisted at or before 6.00 am, all morning classes will be cancelled, if the signal is hoisted at or before 11.00am, then all afternoon classes are cancelled and if the signal is hoisted at or before 3.00pm, all evening classes are cancelled.' *sigh*
And wth about my politics tutorial this afternoon...I swear that my timetable said the lecture venue was at T7...I went there...found out that some random Putonghua class is taking place there, have to take the really long walk back to the library to get my hands on a computer (which were nearly all occupied), realise that it's been changed to T3, walk back in the now pouring rain, found out I'm 30 minutes late and that the door to the right lecture room is locked and the people won't let me in. WTF. Not the greatest start to my academic term, hmm...
Tomorrow's European politics and the first opera tutorial...I'm starting to like European studies...it's probably the most interesting subject I have this term compared to the utterly boring Chinese history and politics course. Oh, and yes...I also have to go to Taiwai tomorrow for the first time to help with the unpacking. I just hope that I don't get too tired or that it rains like crazy tomorrow or I'll be annoyed.
Of course, there were some good things to feel about...the fact that it was TA's birthday on the 10th helped me from wallowing in my disappointment, I suppose. It's not good to become self-absorbed, methinks.
I had thought to make a video or something to put up in celebration of his birthday but uploading such a thing now would be belated and pointless. So I've saved the video for the 40th anniversary of his professional debut which will on the 18th next month. Just finished ironing out the various video technical difficulties which have upset my video making efforts for the past day or so and the anniversary vid has finally been finished, thank goodness. I'll just let it wait and sit around on my computer till next month, I suppose.
Uni work will probably get into full swing next week and so will my internship duties, alas. I'm still not too happy with the situation both at uni and the internship since next week I have to go to Taiwai three times in light of the move and I still haven't got the books to write essays on for one of my courses since a) the libraries don't have them even though the lecturer said they were on reserve and b) I don't WANT to buy them since it will just be a waste of money seeing that I'm not interested in the subject. Gah...
Literally was asleep for most of this morning and did not wake up till the afternoon...that was how tired I was after this week. A mix of physical and mental exhaustion, perhaps.
Hmm...I better start brushing up my French...don't want that to get too rusty.
That is how obsessed I am with the artform...OMG...
But thankfully, they said one didn't to be a music specialist or a major or a minor to do this course...yay!
Now to write an essay about Mozart's operas would be a godsend indeed. =D
EDIT: Why the bloody hell is everything in the second semester when I already have an OVERLOAD of credits (33) and taking another 6 credit history course would not be allowed since it goes over the maximum 36? Gah, if I didn't have to take that stupid academic English course, I could do history instead.
Damn HKU and their irritating requirements.
I just hope I don't have to eat my words of optimism or I'm v.v.v. screwed. O___o
Hmm, I've recently got addicted to Stephen Fry's 'QI', a comedy quiz show...his German impersonation of a person going bonkers over his lost phone is hilarious while the voice he used to announce 'Hello and welcome to the BAFTAs' was also extremely funny (it's all on the short 'Mein Handy' clip on Youtube). I'm starting to think that he's become another favourite person of mine...he's utterly fantastic in almost everything he does...
But that doesn't mean that my interest in TA is waning...as one can see from my new avatar...it's him as Marcello in Puccini's 'La boheme' which I watched a little bit of last night. It was only an excerpt and he was only onscreen for only a few moments but my god, and I'll say this again, he can act extremely well! (I think I went a little crazy over it and even uploaded the clip on Youtube...great. XD)
Yesterday I finished this horrendously annoying history essay on the French Revolution...never has writing a 2500 word essay been so terribly difficult. I mean, the subject/topic was obviously not difficult but my god, the process of racking my brains to work was tiring. I was appalled by the fact that I couldn't remember or messed up so many words/spellings during my writing and relied on the word/spell check to rectify the situation. Geez, I even mispelled 'observation' and for the life of me, couldn't correct it properly by myself. It's insane...damn HKU...I think the local student population is starting to have an extremely adverse effect on my writing/thinking skills and it's really ANNOYING me...
Edit: WTF?! Moments after posting this, I realised I mispelled even my favourite baritone's name in the tags section. OMFG...*smashes head on desk* @______@