Today was a fantastic day. Firstly, because of many people staying up late for Superbowl Sunday, Sharon pushed our 9:30am class to 10:30. After a great discussion on “The Effect” and our playwrighting class, we had the rest of the day free. Yesterday, we were given a new playwrighting assignment to develop a character inspired by a work of art, so Kate and I decided to venture out of the house at around 2:30 to go back to the Tate Britain for a little inspiration!
We weren’t entirely sure where we were going, and admittedly got off at the Waterloo branch which ended up being quite a walk to the Tate. I didn’t mind, though, because it was beautiful outside today! I, therefore, got a lot more great tourist-y picture
Once we finally made it to the Tate (at around 4:00…we definitely got a little lost), we spent a good hour or so examining the pictures and making up back-and-forth stories for them. It ended up being really fun. I don’t think I’ve ever looked at paintings as storytelling devices, but doing so made me see them a whole new way. It was incredibly interesting to look at all of the details–the director of one person’s gaze in relation to another’s, the placement of a hand, the objects in the background. I loved it! We, yet again, only managed to look at a few of the gallery rooms, so I hope to go back another day!
A few paintings I really enjoyed…pictures taken at an “artistic” angle. Notice the pair in the back in the first one? I didn’t see them at all on a first glance!
When we arrived back home at 5:45, we were starving. Luckily for us, tonight was our weekly family dinner! It was, quite honestly, the best one yet! This week, Nina, Elizabeth, and Yao cooked, and in honor of Chinese New Year (the year of the Snake! Officially celebrated next Sunday) Yao taught everyone how to make dumplings! They bought the ingredients for the filling yesterday (making meat and vegetarian versions) and spent at least two hours preparing them, then this evening, they (along with the help of Sarah, Katherine, and Sharon) individually wrapped and cooked them all! They honestly must have made hundreds–the picture below only shows about half of them. Also on the menu, delicious home-made spring rolls, a HUGE pot of rice, and fortune cookies bought from Chinatown!
The chefs, their assistants, and their masterpieces! Yao, the Head chef, center stage! Honestly, the COOLEST dining experience ever. Also, they were DELICIOUS!
This was one of the many sauces we used for dipping our dumplings in–”Prickly Oil.” It tasted light, subtly sweet, and spicy, but we understood the name minutes after we finished tasting it. It made everyone’s tongues feel really tingly, and well, “prickly.” A direct quote: “It feels like my tongue is being tazered over and over again…but I kind of like it.”
This was my fortune. Surprisingly accurate too! Next weekend the fabulous JAKE S. is visiting us from his study abroad experience in Copenhagen. We haven’t seen him since he surprised us at the beach last summer, and I am SO PUMPED!
Also, worth noting, we all learned a new “vocabulary word” from Anna at dinner tonight–”Shoeburyness.” We didn’t believe her when she told us what it meant, but I looked on Wikipedia and the following is an exact description, “Shoeburyness is also mentioned in The Meaning of Liff by Douglas Adams et al. The Meaning of Liff is a fictional dictionary assigning names to local English towns. Shoeburyness is described as “that uncomfortable feeling one experiences when sitting in a chair that is still warm from the last occupant.”"
After dinner, Emily and I high-tailed it out to tube to get off at the Piccadilly Circus stop to see our ninth show in London, “The 39 Steps” at the Criterion Theatre. I got the tickets from, what else, “Get Into London Theatre” for only 10 pounds, and our seats were pretty great! We even got to move up a whole row so we could lean over the balcony because the entire row in front of us was empty. We could see the entire stage from up there, so we missed nothing, which was perfect for this fast-paced show!
A straight-up comedy, this frenzy of a show was based off a Hitchcock spy-thriller, and mocked the film-noir/detective style of classic movies. What’s more, there were only four actors in the whole show, one portraying the main character throughout, while the other three portrayed what seemed like over a hundred different characters. Complex staging and a clever yet simplistic use of costume and set effectively kept up with the pace of the show, and the acting was impeccably sharp and funny. I loved it!
To conclude my fabulous day, Emily and I, on a whim, decided to hit up “M&M World, London” that we passed on the way back to the tube station. We were total tourists and took a lot of pictures. It turned out to be way too much fun.
The employees there were also super friendly (most likely because they were more-or-less selling things, but…also they seemed like great people. We actually want to be friends with all of them.) Anyways, it worked. We both ended up buying M&Ms.
A little more expensive than normal. But check out all the pretty colors!
Also, we got our “M&M Color Moods” analyzed from this machine thing (below.)
I got “White.” But it also said “You may just be the kindest person to step on the podium today!” so I felt better. Finally, M&M world was playing the best music ever, and when they played “Single Ladies,” Emily took it as a sign.