Tag Archives: 42nd Street

does this car run on milk?

I am home again and I have returned to winter. I think that Autumn must have been the weekend that I was away as I have returned to full scale winter weather. I have been home for three days and it has snowed on two of those. Snow in October, I kid you not. It was -1 at the bus stop yestarday, I was not amused. The clothes that people wear have not changed though, most of the guys in school are still wearing shorts(?!) and everyone just wears jumpers. How they manage to cope without coats I do not understand. 

The American sense of humour is very different to the British, as mum and I descovered in rather unusual circumstances today. So,  my plague/cough/general unwellness is still in full force so today mum and I finally managed to go to the doctors to try and fix me. Now, mum and I aren’t very good at being serious when we’re together at the best of times, but for some reason medical professionals seem to bring out an extremely odd side of us both. It all started with the manditory check up questions: do you smoke? drink? etc. to which I answered both and then she went ‘do you ever feel low, depressed, with feelings of suicide, cry?’ to which both mum and I looked at eachother raised our eyebrows and started laughing knowing full well that I haven’t been doing that well lately, the nurse gave us the oddest look and i responded ‘no, well at least not clinically’ mid-giggle (she wasn’t particularly impressed to say the least). She left pretty promptly after this, as mum and I tried to supress our laughter the doctor came in. He asked me about my brain stuff and how it had been since the operation and in a moment of awkward-confusion I responded ‘well, well not well, as well as you can be with a hole in your skull’. He gave me the oddest look and i collapsed in to laughter as did mum. He then proceded to check my breathing and half way through listening to my lungs he went ‘have you had ankle swelling with this cough?’. Now, i don’t know about you but my ankles don’t usually swell when i have a lung infection. lungs and ankles don’t really go hand in hand in my mind, but evidently they do in ohio. This only made mum giggle further and then it didn’t help that the next thing he said was ‘and have you any nodes?’. In the end came out with tears streaming down my face laughing at it all.   

Hamish has also been a treasure trove of class comments too. The other day he asked ‘mummy, did god actually save the Queen?’ which lead to a rather amusing conversation. Then yestarday when we were driving to the dance studio with my friend he asked ‘mummy, does this car run on milk?’. He’s a funny little chap. He’s got a girlfriend now, her name is Clair and he talks about her a lot. Mum finds this hole thing highly amusing, as does Lorna, as Hamish is 7 and has been in more relationships than I have and i’m 17. Hamish’s education is quite a bit different here too, today he was taught how to help a girl up from her seat, this was very sweet as he was paired with Clair. Although, when he got home he did ask ‘mummy, how come I had to help Clair up but she didn’t help me?’

42nd Street is still as fun as ever, being on the cast is so fun and I’m loving it just as much as I was at the start. Today, however, they gave us an assignment. They want us to write 5 post cards to people to personally invite them to come and see the show. Now, this is fine when you have local family and actual friends but when your family and friends are on a different contenant and all of your friends here are on the cast it does present some slight issues…

Speaking of home I’ve missed it a lot this week. I’ve missed my friends a lot, I haven’t seen them in such a long time and I don’t feel like I’m being the dependable friend that I should be as I’m not there when they need me.  I know that they’re only on the other end of the phone but it’s not the same when your not in the same room and you have to schedule calls between rehearsals. So much has changed at home since I left that I don’t really know what to expect when I go back. I’m so excited for Christmas now, to see everyone again, and the snow this week makes it feel so soon. Only 56 days, 23 hours and 36 minuites until hometime!

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Be careful what you wish for

This weekend we turned American and put vegetables on our doorstep. Yes, we have four rather lurid orange pumpkins sitting outside our front door to match the rest of the street. The Americans get really into the whole ‘Autumn’ thing here and the houses are dressed up for ‘fall’ almost as much as we would decorate ours for christmas. There are pumpkins and browny-red leaves hanging from everywhere. I don’t really understand why, but we decided to embrace it anyway.

So, this weekend I haven’t really done anything noteworthy to be honest. On friday we went out for dinner as a family then after My friends Hannah and Austin picked me up and we went to Ben’s house. We watched a film and just chilled in his basement. He has built a skate ramp in his basement. Like a mini half-pipe in his house. It was cool. I had a go and fell over about 7 times. I’m not the best at skateboarding, evidently.

Saturday was another day full of rehearsals. I seem to spend hours on end in that theatre at the moment. I’m not complaining, but it is long. I also seem to be frequenting starbucks far more than is healthy at the moment, mainly because it is so close to school (and I like chai a lot). I even went pre-rehearsal this weekend and somehow it resulted in 5 of us tap-dancing in the queue. Don’t ask…

After rehearsal I went and got Chipoltle with Sydney. If there is one thing that England is missing it’s Chipoltle. It’s sort of like really yummy healthy(ish) fresh mexican food, I think. St Albans needs one desparately. It does tacos and Burritos (which I have to pronouce ‘Buh-ree-doh’ or they don’t understand me) After that we got icecream then we just drove around for a bit. We went to Hannah’s got in her car and then drove a bit more. There’s not really that much to do here as you can guess.In the end we ended up at the local Kroger (supermarket) where we met pretty much everyone I knew. Yep, you heard right, the place to be at 10.30 on a saturday night in Ohio is the local supermarket carpark. This is a very cool place to live.      

Even though there isn’t loads to do here, I am enjoying the level of freedom compared to back home. Everyone I know lives really close by and everyone here drives, so getting around is incredibly easy and quick. It’s also safe as well and so Mum doesn’t have to worry quite as much as she did. Needless to say I like it a lot. Where we live is exactly the environment that I wanted to grow up in. Even Hamish is loving the freedom, he has a friend who lives right next door and they play at our house, his house, by the creek and at the park almost constantly.

It’s weird thinking that this time last year this was everything I wanted and now I’m living it. I turn 17 tomorrow and if you took me back a year and told me about what i’m doing now I never would have believed you. Yet here I am and believe it or not I actually love it. So here is to another year of surprises and making this one as good as the last.

Thursday’s Child

I’m still suffering from the after effects of Homecoming. I have a severely pained throat – which I blame entirely on screaming the lyrics to ‘wrecking ball’ and I’m still mentally scarred from the things that I whitnessed (too many hormones in one room). Although I did manage to significantly scare my family on saturday night. I popped home before the dance to change into my vans before the dance, I dont do heels – I can’t run, skip or walk in them, so I left my shoes on the kitchen floor. So, my mother comes home from dinner out with the family, sees my shoes and immediately assumes the worst; that I have taken my own life (I kid you not). She then proceeded to check every single room in the abode, with the whole family in tow, in fear I was hanging from a ceiling fan. I think the Americas have changed her more than they have changed me.

Rehearsals are still as fun as ever. I find myself counting down the hours to them everyday, it’s not like i’m keen or anything. The words that they use to describe stuff in drama are weird here too. For example; today the singing teacher told this guy that his character was more ‘Spunky’. I was taken completely by surprise and fell over in giggles. No-one else found this nearly as amusing as I did. Apparently this is normal vocabulary for Americans?! I’ve also been the subject of ridicule this week for calling the ‘back yard’ a ‘garden’. This Americans with their spangled phrases. Lessons in this country are equally as odd. For example; today I spent one and a half hours standing in a stream. I don’t really mind though. Appart from the fact that I was wearing size 7 wellies and had a coughing fit mid-stream which resulted in me almost falling on my bum. My illness/cold/flu/death bug has deeply effected my daily life this week. I’m almost 97% sure that I have the actual plague.

So tonight I descovered that improv is not my forte, sadly it was in front of an audience that I made this descovery. An audience that I don’t really whish to see again for a while, but apparently it’s ‘necessary’ that I return to school tomorrow morning. My drama class held our own improvisation show tonight (think, ‘who’s line is it anyway’ but less rude with questionable acting). In order to raise money for the trip to Scotland next summer. It was really fun and I had a nice evening – appart from when I was on stage trying my hardest not to cringe.

I spend my time here trying to accomplish small goals. For example; today marks 7 days without crying. An achievement which my mother and I celebrated this evening with Pizza and ice-cream. I know it’s only a small time but it’s the longest I’ve managed in the last two months. I have also reduced my netflix dependance 10 fold. I’m slowly getting there, as my Dad puts it ‘you dont eat the chocolate all in one go or you’ll be sick, so you have to take it one piece at a time’. 

Homecoming

Boy, do I have have a lot to tell you about this weekend! I am pretty sure that I can say that this weekend has been my best in Ohio so far, just because of the amount of stuff I did and fun I had. This has also been there first time where I’ve felt like I have actual friends here and I can’t even begin to explain how happy that makes me. 

So, on friday night it was the Homecoming parade and game. They have a parade to show off extra-curricular activities and clubs in school and also for the Homecoming Court to arrive in. (Homecoming court is those who have been nominated to be Homecoming King or Queen). I was in the parade representing the drama department and I stood on a trailer behind a van with the cast and sung ‘we’re in the money’ 7 times in a row. It was fun, but god did that song get on my nerves. We smiled, waved, sung, bopped and looked generally amused whilst being pulled a long at 3 miles per hour. I enjoyed it as it was a reason to see the cast again on a day when I usually wouldn’t have.

After the parade I stayed at the stadium so that I could ‘watch’ the game. Before the game began they announced the Homecoming King and Queen. I have no idea who they are but she looked incredible and had amazing shoes. Mum and Hamish decided to come to the game as they’d never been to one before and they were generally amused by the whole thing as far as I can tell. Lorna found her friend there and had a great time, she end up staying there later than the rest of us! I stayed mainly with my drama/dance frinds as they are just too funny not to be around.

On saturday morning I had school play rehearsal. This time we learnt the most complex sequence of tapping steps I have ever experienced in my existance. I honestly have no idea how i am going to master this dance, it is rediculous, even the experienced tappers are having difficulty, but i’ll have to master it or i’ll end up looking a complete imbicile on the stage if i’m doing it wrong.

In the afternoon I got ready for the dance and then went over to my friend Hannah’s house. It turns out that this whole Homecoming thing is really really formal. Her parents were dressed smartly and took pictures of us both and of her with her sisters. Then we went to CJ’s house and met up with Megan the other guys in our group and we took even more photos in his garden. It was trying to rain but we survived. It was really sweet seeing everyone all dressed up smartly, like prom all over again. After all the photos were taken and all the parents had left we went and got food. The resturant was full of people going to Homecoming and so everyone was dressed really fancy. After foods the girls and I went home and changed shoes (I suck at walking in heels) then we went back to the school and met the othes there.

The dance was different to how I had expected it. It was ‘under the sea’ themed and so they had put up blue dolphins and bunting and stuff everywhere. It was a lot like a year 7 school disco but with more questionable dance moves (Think ‘Batchwood’ times 10). It was still a fun evening though. I realised that I actually knew far more people than I expected. It was really weird as I had spoken to so many people, I just hadn’t realised it. It was reassuring though as I never got lost because I always found someone I knew pretty swiftly. I spent sometime with my drama friends, sometime with the people I came with, sometime with the people I sit with at lunch. It was a laugh.

After the dance was over and eveyone was leaving my friend Parker offered to take me home. We originally intended on going home but instead we decided we should go to the after party at his friends house. So we went there and her house was HUGE and they’d layed out a full buffet with pizza and grapes and chocolate covered strawberrys and everything. But most importantly they had those American red plastic cups that you always see during the houseparty scenes in films, I made a beeline straight for the lemonade just because I wanted to use the cups. I know that it was sad but I was internally screaming with excitement. Admittedly, the afterparty itself was rubbish as the music was quiet and everyone was tired but I could not have cared less because I had a red cup in my hand and was forfilling a lifelong dream.  

Midweekers

If Wednesday’s aren’t your favourite day of the week then you are wrong. They are the best. I get to lie in for an hour longer than usual, I only have to go to three lessons and one of them is drama. There is nothing quite like a Wednesday. And, as it was ‘superflex’ today, it meant I could go anywhere on campus during my lunch period, so I spent the whole thing in the drama department with the other drama people. They’re all nice, weird and funny and I feel like I can be my-not-entirely-normal-mad-sock-wearing-self around them if you catch my drift.

I’ve finally decided (after much debate) to go to Homecoming! Hannah said I could go with her and her friends this saturday and I’m so excited. I get to do a proper American dance with freinds and wear a dress and do my hair and just do the whole prom thing again and I can’t wait! The whole thing here seems to be so much more formal here that at home. The whole ordeal must start about 1pm in order to get everything in! So first you get ready hair make up etc, then you go out for dinner as a group, then you go back to someones house and take your ‘homecoming photos’ and then you go to the dance. Then, if your lucky, someone will throw an afterparty. It’s so much effort for one evening but I’m well up for it and am becoming increasingly keen.

Rehearsal is still as fun as ever, but I swear if i have to hear another song from ’42nd street’ i might have to kill some one. There are only so many renditions of ‘lullaby of broadway’ that one can handle. But in rehearsal today I did spend an hour and a half of my life standing in a line, down the centre of the stage, for no exact rason. But nevertheless, I give my hours over to this production. It’s going to be so good when it’s done but currently it’s still at that car-crash-rehearsal stage.

If any of you want to know more about it here, or what I’m up to, or if the rumours about America are true etc. feel free to drop me a question and I will answer it in my next post. It feels a bit odd here whittering to myself, so if there’s anything you want to know more about please ask, as I don’t want this to be too much of a dull read!  

Participation and Involvement

I have no idea what a peron who lives in New Albany is called (A New Albaner? A New Albainier? A New Albanite?!) Well whatever it is I’ve tried to be an active one this past weekend. To immerse myself in the culture so to speak.

So on friday night I took my sister to the football game, she’d never been before so I thought she should go. I also had nothing better to do and thought I would probably meet someone I knew there anyway. The theme was red, so I wore my Buckeye [Ohio State University] jumper (after all it is my local ‘collage’). Lorna loved it! She was so excited, more than I was at my first game. She’d only been to the stadium once before so it was quite a shock for her to see it all so full and so busy. She saw a couple of her friends but we stayed together as it felt right and she couldn’t exacty tell them how excited she was with the whole thing. She kept seeing things and shouting and giggling and pointing and it was adorable to watch. We shared a huge pretzle as she marvled at the cheerleaders and especially the marching band. In a weird way it was actually nice just spending sometime with just the two of us. I have an odd sort of relationship with her that fluctuates between her being my best friend and me not wanting her to breathe near me.

After the game my friend Hannah, who is in my english class, invited me to go and ‘hangout’ (they actually use that word) with her and her friends. It was such a nice evening and I am so glad I went. There were 8 of us in total and we sat in her friend Rachel’s basment and chatted for ages. I was a bit out of my comfort zone at the start as i only really knew Hannah and Parker from my Drama class but after a while I just felt like I fitted in.

On Saturday I had my first dance rehearsal for the school musical. It was intense. We managed to get the first dance number nailed in about an hour and a half. I wouldn’t call it easy tap dancing either, Lorna has done tap since she was 7 and she can’t do some of the steps. That is one thing that I’ve learnt about America though, they really like to throw you in at the deep end. If they want to teach you something they don’t take it slow at all they throw you in deep and expect you to catch on as fast as you can. I think that it’s so much better for you though.

Today we went to the ‘New Albany Classic’. It is essentially a show jumping event, although, it has an atmosphere similar to a county show (minus the cows and the WI). It was a nice day out, we stuck together as a family and went into some tents, watched some horses, went on some rides, ate some foods etc. Ariana Grande performed which was sweet aswell. I reckon the majority of New Albany was there, Lorna and I kept seeing familiar faces, Mum bumped into people she knew, Hamish found his friends from football and Ish saw work mates. And now, as a result of my weekend of participation and involvement in New Albany life though games, the musical, events and friendships I do now feel like I could actually live here.