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Friday, September 23, 2016

I'm so excited to officially announce that I've been accepted into the BU Geneva program for the spring semester!

...yes, my last semester in university is going to be spent abroad. Yes, they tell you not to do this. But you know what? My university experience has been anything but typical in enough ways that I think spending my Senior spring overseas will be brilliant.

Lots of people talk about how their college experience was the best four years of their lives.  If this turns out to be the best period of my life, then my future must be pretty bleak.  I spent too much of my Freshman year in a relationship that was never going to work and too much of my Sophomore semester trying to figure out what I wanted out of my education. I've only been happy since my Junior semester (last spring) at Boston University... and while I don't have any regrets about how things happened, it's definitely time to do a semester for myself.

In Geneva, I'm going to take French. I'm going to spend way too much money eating myself sick on cheese. I'm going to grocery shop across the border in France, day trip around the Alps, and hopefully explore more beautiful European locations. I'll finally take a formal French class, get an internship, and live in a French-speaking canton for more than a month. It's going to be brilliant.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

New Englanders are a very special sort of people. They regularly weather winters that would make Californians cry (then retire down to warm, steamy Florida), eat weird sea bugs that turn red when you cook them, and head to the "Cape" for a long weekend to swim in the cold ocean. I came up with this post whilst walking to the T drinking an ice coffee... which is an extremely Bostonian sentence. Anyways....

1) If you ask me what to order at Legal Seafoods, I will say "a cuppa chowda".

People from Massachusetts seem to have their own language sometimes, and I definitely speak it on occasion. From telling you about how wicked (great) the ice cream is from my hometown's local favourite Bedford Farms and looking at the queue for Boston University's "lobstah" night in horror, we certainly have our own manner of speaking! While I don't have a full blown Boston accent, I do have a few distinctly Bostonian phrases in my vocabulary.

Me when I was little! We love our pumpkins in New England. 

2) I talk about the weather, winters and foliage a lot.

New England weather is all over the place. When you grow up here, you're used to wearing a coat in the morning to school and going home and changing into shorts. It doesn't make any sense, but we know and love to complain about our weather. In reality, after three years in the tropics I missed having four seasons more than anything! I can tell you that two years ago was the worst winter in almost anyone's living memory, and certainly the worst winter I have ever seen. I can also tell that this year isn't going to be a pretty leaf year (you know, when the leaves change colour and the tourists come up here to go on tree walks) because it's too warm during the day and too cool in the evening.

The house I grew up in, covered in snow. 

3) I have strong opinions about the MBTA.

This is sort of a recent thing that has happened since I became a Bostonian rather than a townie, but MY GOODNESS is the MBTA absolutely terrible. It is simply remarkable that a system so slow, unreliable and generally a pain to use is the main form of transportation for a good part of the city. The buses are definitely more reliable than the trains, and the Commuter Rail is more reliable than both... though they've started cutting funds and train rides there too. The MBTA is a disaster and anyone who has to deal with it on a regular basis knows exactly what I'm talking about.

What are some things that you say or do that help people figure out where you're from?
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Friday, September 9, 2016

It's absolutely insane that I'm officially in my senior year at Boston University. I suppose it's so insane because I've gone and skipped a year of school-- thank you, external credits and study abroad programs! When I was a little girl I always wanted to skip a grade because I thought it was cool. Now in university I've finally gone and done it.

This semester is already turning out to be strange because I wasn't meant to be on campus. Initially, the plan was for me to spend this semester abroad in Singapore. Unfortunately things fell through and I'm back on the Charles River campus... and it feels like everything is lining up. I have a single dorm (finally) with wood floors (yay, no mice) that I have definitely 100% unpacked and moved into (not at all).

Continuing the chaotic theme of this term so far, I've been switching around classes like a madwoman. When I was a freshman, my schedule was set in stone and I was terrified at the idea of changing my perfectly balanced schedule. Now I'm switching in and out of classes at will. As a senior, I don't want to waste my time with unprepared professors. It's time to start getting things done so I can finish my degree!

The good news is, it seems like everything is going to work out just fine :)

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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

It recently occurred to me that I rarely see bloggers post about their friendships. Maybe it's out of respect for their friends' privacy or people think there are more interesting things to write about... but I digress. This post is dedicated to my friend Lea, who is currently in Paris drinking good coffee and eating lots of bakery goods (I hope). We were roommates in Geneva and London, and I think it's fair to say we sort of turned into partners in crime. 

By "crime", I mean we encouraged each other to eat cookies and sweets. I introduced her to one of the most amazing cheap sweets on the planet: Jaffa Cakes. We also did silly things like visiting Briton and trying vegan food at some hipster cafe, only to eat delicious fish and chips later that day.  Lea was obsessed with this song called "Roses" (pictured above on my Spotify) and played it practically every time she was getting ready for something. Now whenever I hear it, I think of her!

Now as I get ready to head back to BU, Lea is enjoying her time in beautiful Paris. So, I hope she has a lovely semester there. We'll graduate together in May 2017 :D

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Saturday, August 27, 2016

I think it's safe to say that I've been on a health kick lately. I'd like to believe that everyone goes on health kicks occasionally. I think mine started after Europe thanks to a terrible 24 hour stomach bug in Prague. It took me like three days to start eating normally afterwards, and I was terrified of touching alcohol until almost the end of the trip. When I got back from the trip, I realised I was very close to my pre-university weight and not terribly far off from my slimmest high school weight. Though I have no desire to get down to my slimmest high school weight (I'm not kidding about the starved-into-my-dress thing), I'd like to get down to my pre-university weight.

Me at my slimmest in high school. Yay, prom!

Anyways, I've been doing all sorts of silly things in hopes of getting down to my pre-university weight (my slimmest high school weight is not feasible or healthy for me). So far, this has included buying chia seeds and convincing myself that I like them, doing yoga even though I think it's incredibly boring, and doing this horrifying activity known as cardio workouts. Honestly though, how does anyone enjoy yoga? I think it's the most dull activity on the planet... especially when dance, aerial, and skating exist! I've also been doing this thing where I leave my yoga mat out all the time in my bedroom in hopes that I go on it and do some variety of exercise. Turns out that the mat is quite comfortable to sit on whilst crocheting... which exercises my brain and fingers, I guess.

Another goofy thing I've done since being on this health kick is getting my father to take pictures of me in fancy poses. Since he's a photographer he doesn't really mind, but it's still a bit funny. I'm essentially asking him to indulge my vanity... but I'm going to try not to think about that. Look, I can do a pretty full-blow dancer pose.

A photo posted by Natalie (@natalie.mei) on

Perhaps most people had their pre-summer health kick, but has anyone else had a pre-school year health kick? I head back to university next weekend for my SENIOR year (woohoo!) and I guess I'm trying to slim down before dining hall food and endless coffee sustains me for another semester. 
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