The Lion King, Broadway, How To Deal With Being Ill In Another Country and Our First Fire

If there’s one thing you absolutely must do when you’re in NYC, it’s go and see a show on Broadway.

Why? Ok, I’ve been really lucky to have seen a few major shows in London, and they have all been incredible. But seeing a show in New York City? It’s a completely different experience. It’s amazing; the settings, surroundings, atmosphere and just general feeling you get from being there, it completely takes your breath away, I absolutely recommend to anyone who is lucky enough to visit here to do all the major attractions like the Empire State, Statue of Liberty and Ground Zero, and if you can fit in going to see a show too. Do it.

Where to eat: Juniors – Times Square on Broadway
“Where every night is opening night!” (so cheesy, I love it) anyway, so Juniors is this really cool authentic American Diner on Broadway which sometimes has Broadway stars signing autographs on the balcony outside. (We walked past the cast of Matilda the musical as we walked in.) Had the Steak Cheeseburger and Fries, Pineapple Milkshake (try it, seriously) and Chocolate and Vanilla cheesecake (SO GOOD), and a pretty good bill at the end considering we were in the middle of NYC. It’s an awesome little place and really sets the mood for seeing a show and it’s right around the corner from the Minskoff Theatre.

The Lion King
For the 2nd time of seeing it in my lifetime, it was amazing. I’m definatly one of those people who get’s really really into something when i’m watching it, and I absolutely love the theatre. My eyes well up as soon as they start belting out

“IT’S THE CIRCLE OF LIFEEEEEEE!!!!” and don’t even ask me how much I cry when Mufasa dies.. (it’s really sad ok.)

But seriously, if you ever thought about going to see it, Go. I don’t want to give too much away, and i’m sure anyone else who has been lucky enough to see it will agree, it’s an absolute must seeee.

Being Ill
So this year’s fresher’s flu finally caught up with me. Being ill/poorly/under the weather or sick when you’re in another country is nothing short of depressing. (I love the term ‘i’m sick’ in this country, as it seems to encompass every single possible illness ever.) But seriously, the other day I felt so ill all I wanted to do was be at home, in my home bed, with my home TV and be hanging out with my mom. So, I decided to do some research, and I found some great tips online and got some lovely advice from friends who’ve also had experience of living away,

So here is a run down list of the best things to do when you get sick in another country:

– Surround yourself with home comforts (tea, tea and more tea)
– Don’t try and be clever and go out that night (…)
– Stay hydrated, it is ridiculously easy to get out of the habit of drinking enough water when you move away
– Watch all the TV shows/movies you’d watch if you were poorly at home (New Girl, Big Bang and anything Monty Python)
– Avoid dieing in bed all day and if you can venture out into daylight, do
– Use the opportunity to catch up with as many friends/ family as possible to combat homesickness
– Be proactive, take your meds, catch up on work and take your time to rest

I can’t *cough* i’m sick.

So I get a call from the lovely Shanice (the other English person from our group of 3 from Aston University) the other night going: “SAM!!!! My house is on FIRE!!! So I ran over like an absolute mad women from the other side of campus, fearing nothing but the worst, I literally had visions of flames coming out of the windows, the fire spreading and the whole Upper West being up in flames when I got there..

On arrival however I was greeted with this image: A huge crowd outside the house (it wasn’t up in flames luckily, it had just been the oven in the kitchen) loads of firemen, security and Shanice standing outside in her bright pink slippers, shaking like a leaf, holding her suitcase and trying to explain to me that she had only been trying to cook Fish and Chips.

I honestly don’t know what was funnier, the fact she had her suitcase or the irony that she had been tryng to cook the most British dish possible.

Luckily after calming her down she also saw the funny side. (If you need someone to be serious in those situations I am not the person to go to) But in the end nobody was hurt, it was only the stove, a kettle and a bit of a the wall that had been damaged and everything else was fine, and to be honest I believe in those situations that’s all that really matters, objects and items can always be replaced, people can’t, so if you’re ok, and everyone else is ok, that’s all that really matters. So whilst we waited outside I did the only thing that every English person in that situation would do, invited her over for a cup of tea and a chat whilst everything finished calming down.

In other news, I MADE THE TEAM!!!! 😀 The Official Fox Ultimate Team!! Literally so happy and i’m so so psyched to be on it. The whole team are an amazing bunch of people, everyone’s so chill and welcoming and just up for a laugh. 

More on that the next few weeks!

Below, pictures of the week:

Sam x

The Lion King NYC
That Suitcase

9/11, Sororities, Frisbee and The Everyday Joe’s.

A couple of weeks ago I looked into some hints & tips into moving abroad. Homework was getting on top of me, I was feeling a bit homesick and worst of all, I STILL couldn’t get my cups of tea right (they have about 50million types of milk over here and I have to use at least 2 tea bags per cup at the moment – #EnglishProblems). Of course on my research into ‘Moving Abroad’ I came across all the usual cliché stuff of.. ‘Try something new every day ‘ ‘Join a club or society’ ‘Give it time – you’re an awesome person eventually new friends will come to you!’ (I literally did read that somewhere)

But there was ONE thing however that did stick out to me:

  • Say Yes To Every Invite

So that’s what I did, and the past 2 weeks have been awesome. I’ve said yes to everything I got invited to, even if I could only stay for an hour! It’s been tough, going on nights out when you only know 1 or 2 people, going to lunch with people you’ve just met, going out somewhere when you’re tired and just want to stay in, especially early morning stuff (I am not nor have ever been a morning person), but I’ve done it. I know it’s a bit of a ‘Yes Man’ cliché but it’s a cliché for a reason, it really works, it helps you to make the most out of stuff and it’s really helped me to meet more people, and I’ve discovered some amazing new friends over the past 2 weeks! (Smiley face)

This year marked the 12th anniversary of September 11th. As a Brit I guess I’ve never felt really part of the what happened, I don’t feel I’ve ever had a right to be sad about it, I’m very fortunate that I didn’t personally know anyone directly affected by the attack, I’d never been to New York and I could only imagine what it must have been like for those who were affected.

Being present for the anniversary day last Wednesday in New York state and seeing all those people walk into the chapel on campus, hearing it all on the news again, talking about it with people and seeing all those images of the two burning towers again was all very surreal. On the 1st anniversary the college was given a cross that had was made from an I-Beam that had originally been part of the South Tower, and every year on September 11th the cross is displayed in honour of the victims. After the memorial ceremony (I felt a bit intrusive actually going to it) I went inside the chapel to see cross and I ended up writing in the prayer book. From being around so much all that day, visiting New York City and Ground Zero only a couple of weeks before, talking to people who were affected, reading some of the prayers and seeing that cross, I can’t really describe the feeling, but I suddenly felt part of it. I began to comprehend the sheer magnitude and sadness of what happened that day and how much it affected not just the people of New York, but the entire country. What struck me also was that the day was purely about remembrance, there was no mention of Al Qaeda or terrorism or the Middle East, there was no hatred and no resentment. The day was purely about remembering those who were affected, the people that lost their lives and the friends and families who lost their loved ones. It was incredibly humbling and I feel honoured to have experienced being part of that day this year.

So what else have I been up to the past 2 weeks?

So I’ve joined a sorority ‘Kappa Lambda Psi,’ they’re one of the oldest at Marist and my whole endeavour of joining them has been a complete and utter wonderful accident. During activity fair I went over to the sorority stalls (I was being nosey) and got chatting to the President. I think in England we have a very stereotypical view of sororities (group of girls, sitting in their pink sweaters and pearls necklaces talking about world peace blar blar..) However that night I was going out with my Hawaiian housemates and their friends, and who should walk through our front door, the President of the KLP sorority Jess! Who is also Hawaiian and great friends with my housemates (I am loving how much of a small world this place is becoming/all the Hawaiians) So in the end, I went along to the sorority info meeting. I loved it and they’ve now asked me to pledge. All of the girls are lovely, they’re really down to earth don’t take themselves too seriously, love going out and do some incredible things for charity. I went over to their house the other night and we ended up going to the Frat party next door (my first real Frat party! – sometimes I literally feel like my life has become an American movie..)

Ultimate Frisbee
So I’ve started to play Ultimate Frisbee again. Yes, it is classed as a real sport (we have End Zones and everything!) and it’s great fun, great fitness, all about good team spirit and having a laugh. My experience in the sport extended to being tricked into playing in Spain for my University team the Aston Hornets last April (they told me I could just chill on the beach being their groupie and 15minutes before the first game told me I had to play!) and I literally fell in love with it. Yesterday I managed to jump and catch my first mid air Frisbee (proud!)

So a few of us Internationals have put together a Dodgeball Team for the Intramural Dodgeball tournaments (i.e. play other teams within the College). We were trying to think of a name, when last week’s language barrier moment of the week occurred:

“He’s a nice guy y’know? Normal, like everyday person, y’know like everyday Joe?”
“um, you mean ‘Average Joe’ Avi..?”
So in true international spirit we have named our team the ‘Everyday Joes’ in honour of Avi and we had our very first game last night.

Truth be told, We suck. But we’re hoping for a positive outcome next week (either that or we’re joining volleyball..)

Weird things I discovered this week:

  • Butter comes wrapped in long cubed shapes.
  • They don’t have Vimto here
  • Nobody knows what a ‘Brolly’ is
  • I found Moon Pie

Next countdown event:
After queuing up over 3 hours before ticket sales on campus, i’m going to The Lion King on Broadway NYC on the 22nd September for just $25!!! (YAYYYYYYY)

Pictures of said cuboid butter and photos of the week below
(hover the mouse over the images to view the caption)

Sam x