Journal Entry #2

October 29, 2003

    The weeks are flying by now!  This is the 5th week of school, out of 10 weeks and a few days total.  Last week we covered gram negative bacteria (again), neoplasia, cattle nematodes, GI tract and respiratory pharmacology, and general and inhalant anaesthesia.  This week we've covered more gram negative bacteria, circulatory diseases/disorders, sheep nematodes, and the next two days will bring intravenous anaesthesia, analgesics, tranquilisers, and sedatives.  Our pathology demo tomorrow is titled "colours of pathology"...hehehe.

    I've been riding my "new" used bike about 3 days per week.  I recently discovered the beauty and easy ride along the Forth and Clyde Canal!  I have been bird watching there and have seen: mute swans, tufted ducks, coots, moor hens, blackbirds, magpies, and gulls (not sure the species of gulls).  Sometime soon I plan on riding as far as I can go east on the canal...which I believe leads to the Forth of Clyde, the Atlantic ocean.  On Sunday, I will be participating in the "Go! Bike" monthly bike ride, this time going to Hamilton (a 35-mile ride south of Glasgow) and taking the train back.  We'll see if I can survive (they say if you're in normal health, it's easy).

    I've found that the bike makes everything easier.  It's a pain to take it out of the backyard (we have this tiny gate and several steps down to the road), but so worth it.  I can ride it great distances on main roads (I'm not so scared) to do errands and more.  I can even ride it to my favourite butcher/baker shop for fresh apple turnovers! 

    Today I had an adventure (anything new is an adventure to me).  I had to go to the Home Office public enquiries today, to renew my visa.  I took the bus and the underground to get there, and walked a short distance.  I had to wait an hour, which isn't bad considering I had no appointment.  I got stamped (visa) until November 2006!  YES!  I am so excited about that.  I had worried and worried each year about getting my passport stamped, having the proper documents and such...and now I'll have no problems entering and leaving the UK.  I did have to pay quite a fee though, and am unhappy about that.  My loan money isn't totally in yet, so it makes things tough.  I don't know what is going on with the Stafford loans, but I'm supposed to get them sometime soon. 

    I have been using my new slow cooker (crock pot) to make dinners 1-2 times per week (and dessert, too!).  So far I have made: spicy potato soup, chicken/broccoli/rice casserole, spaghetti sauce, zippy beef tips, and bread pudding.  This week I'm planning on making cream of broccoli soup.  Cooking is difficult here because they don't have all the ingredients you need!  Like onion soup mix, American cheese, Velveeta cheese, cheese soup, pinto beans, corn tortillas, creamed corn, normal ham, and more. 

    I'm still behind in my studies.  I am behind in all subjects now, but more caught up in pharmacology than I had been.  I'm only about a week behind in everything else.  By the end of the week, I'll have way too much to do...and I'll be gone almost all day on Sunday (the bike ride).  I might even be going out on Saturday night...leaving me less time to study.  I think I've kept up more than some people though, so I'm doing OK.  We had a pathology exam last week, it was only worth about 1.5% of the overall grade, and I did just fine. 

    Not much else here is new.  The leaves have totally fallen from the big tree in our parking area, and off many other trees as well.  It has become cold enough to see your breath on some days, and this week it's already rained twice (more than last week when it rained only once).  I'm pretty used to this weather, and you'll hear me say "it's cold!" or "yuck" when I see rain, but that's exactly how I'll always feel, whether I've lived here for 20 years or 2. 

     Just think: Christmas shopping, Christmas music (a favourite of mine), Bonfire Night, and Thanksgiving!  All coming up soon.  Also, we're having our "Graduate Dinner" next week at a restaurant I've never been to (3 course meal), so that should be fun.  The Vet Zoological Society (GUVZS) will have a joint meeting with the Clinical Club on Thursday the 6th (pizza to follow), and who knows what else will happen next week.  Let's wait and see. 


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