22 January 2011

Day One: Complete!

***Almost up to date!***

Last night, I discovered that the mattress Angie put on my bed is one of those fancy mold-around-your-body, warmth-absorbent creatures. And my duvet (I’m pretty sure they call it a duvet here) is probably made of angels’ wings, because it’s just about that soft.

(The view from my window)

(Me, pre-face-washing. Sorry.)

I meant to get up around nine-ish. As it happened, nine-ish turned into eleven-ish, but that was okay. Today, Angie gave us our keys, the rules, maps of the neighborhood and a tour around the house, all of which were very enlightening and did much to increase my sense of England-exploration readiness. And after that, it was

Josh and I walked down to the grocery store (Sainsbury’s), which is in Surbiton proper (our neighborhood is Tolworth, and has about the same relationship with Surbiton that Black Jack does with Florissant), and had an up-close look at things.  It was about 40 degrees out, which is pretty standard when you come from St. Louis in January, and it was pretty funny to listen to the chilly British people moan about how it was freezing, and did you hear, it’s supposed to snow again, do you think we’re going into an Ice Age? Et cetera.
On the way to Sainsbury’s, we stopped to withdraw a few weeks’ rent money (incurring a steep conversion fee in the process…over five pounds!), and I stopped to get a pay-as-you go phone, which was surprisingly cheap, judging from the phone prices at home, and made me feel remarkably more secure, which just goes to show how much I must rely on my phone at home.

Then we proceeded to spend at least two hours in the grocery store.
All I have to say is, being a grownup (with, you know, bills and stuff) is hard. Especially when you’re a foreigner and have to do the conversions before you can decide whether chicken this week is really affordable (fortunately, it is). Somehow, though, we both survived the trip, and even checked out having spent less money than we thought! (40 pounds and sixpence for a week of groceries, if you want to know. That’s including things that we likely won’t have to buy again, like vegetable oil and laundry detergent.)

After the grocery store, we loaded up our bags and walked home. I had assumed we would take the bus, but Josh wanted to walk, just to see how long it took us, and whether we could save money by making it a regular thing.
In the interests of general politeness and diplomacy, I will simply say that a) we could certainly save money by walking home from the grocery store every week, and b) it was almost two hours, half of it was uphill, and those groceries were heavy.


Anyway. Then we cooked dinner, ate dinner, and finished unpacking. 

And then we came down to the lounge to upload pictures and update blogs…and now it’s after midnight. Oh dear.
Well, church tomorrow isn’t until 1030. More on that later. Good night, everyone.


  1. Woooooo England! You need to get me your schedule (with the soft -ch, now) for your late May-July...

  2. I envy your good humor... had Neil and I been in that situation, we would have taken the bus. Most definitely. But hey, now you know right?

  3. Ruth: Shall, as soon as I get it...orientation is Wednesday!

    Jessica: No kidding;) The best part is, the bus for our route kept passing us while we were walking, and it was always full of blissful sitting people. Or at least that's what they looked like to me.


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