Sunday, 19 January 2014

Adventures in London: V&A, Science Museum, and Kensington Gardens.

One of my New Year's resolutions is to take advantage of the fact I live in London, so I'm now planning on going central every week and visit different tourist attractions. Today, I decided to go to South Kensington, and to the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Science Museum, and then decided to have a stroll around Kensington Gardens.


The rock pool in the V&A garden/courtyard
The Victoria and Albert museum was amazing, especially with the massive hall filled with sculptures when you enter (I entered through the tunnel entrance, so it was even better). I personally enjoyed the Fashion and Theatre exhibitions the most, but there's anything for anyone!

The Science museum, meanwhile, was good because I was raised with an interest towards space, so the Space Age section was perfect! My only issue is that, because I have a massive fear of heights, I couldn't go other the walkway or go on the balconies, but people clearly love them!
I loved seeing this when entering the Science Museum; that walkway in the center was really popular.

The moon lander in the Space bit of the museum.
Kensington Gardens was beautiful, even in the middle of winter. I forgot the Albert Memorial was there, so I was breathtaken when I saw it! I also walked to the Kensington Palace, which was stunning alongside the pond, which was a pretty activity hub.

The Albert Memorial

Prettiest pond I've seen thus far.
After my sightseeing, I went to browse the shops on High Street Kensington, before getting lost on the Underground; nobody told me the District line service to the station was separate to the regular route!

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Two Drunken poems

Okay, so I am drunk right now, but here are two poems I have written. Feedback would be wonderful.

Drunken Poem

I threw up,
I screwed up,
But did I?

I danced,
I pranced,
Was I good?

I drunk,
I sunk,
Lower than low.

When I'm sober,
Will I remember,
That silly night?

Drunken Poet  to a Songstress

If I swam,
If I sunk,
Would I die,
In what I drunk?

A poem,
May be solemn,
But it's my home,
Away from  home.

Synthy beats,
Empty sheets,
Imagination's fading,
Is it foreboding?

I am empty,
I am lost,
Give me purpose,
But not too much.

For I am young,
Yet I am old,
I am stupid,
Yet too smart.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

The History of Mary Prince - Review

This is more akin to a short story than a novel, but it's an engrossing quick read. It's a true story about a black slave in late 18th century American, and covers Mary's life up until her dictation of the story. There's no chapter structure, as it's too short and too intertwined in itself to separate into conventional chapters. Now, so as to avoid spoiling it too much, I won't tell you what happens, but I'll discuss some interesting things.

The first striking thing is Mary's speech; it's very pronounced and lacks a dialect I've come to expect from other novels with black narrators (side note: I highly recommend you read Sam Selvon's Lonely Londoners, where the narrator uses Caribbean dialect throughout the novel). She also speaks carefully, continuously refusing to repeat insults from her slave masters. On the other hand, her story was dictated by her, written by someone else, and edited by another person, which brings up the interesting point of authorship of the work. Does Mary even have a full or completely truthful voice here? Or has the writer/editor removed or altered things, such as Mary's account of her family.

Another big thing is the openness of the treatment of slaves. Whilst her first couple of maters are said to be nice, she is soon forced into a brutal cycle of hard labour and unjustified violence. In the end, she does get out, but it's not some heroic rescue or single, powerful stance of freedom. It's not drawn out or climatic, instead it's more ordinary in nature.

Something interesting, however, is that, in the Penguin version I own (I link you to it at the bottom), there is a brief narrative from another slave who was captured and sold, rather than born into slavery, called Asa-Asa. Additionally, the appendix provides Mary's appearance as a witness in a case between her last master and her employee of the time, and even a poem on slavery.

In all, I believe this is a wonderful quick read, and the wealth of additional information makes a great book for those interested in the history of slavery. I won't number rate this one, but I recommend it for audiences interested!

Book can be found here (UK) and here (US)

E x

Monday, 13 January 2014

Changes

A lot's happened during my long hiatus (sorry about that!); I am now in my second semester of university in London, I'm trying my hand at poetry, which might be posted on here, I'm no longer goth, I have eyebrows, and I'm blonde!

It's been a difficult journey for me to get where I am now. Namely, I've had a lot of stress thrown on me, a lot of friends to make, and I've had to get used to sharing a hall, kitchen and toilet with 17 other people (which, I might add, is actually easier to adapt to than you'd think). Also, I've had personal problems, which I won't go into, but it's hopefully all sorted now.

One of the biggest hurdles I've encountered thus far is finding a job. I've applied to goodness-knows how many, but nothing's even appeared likely yet. So I've resolved to find voluntary work, either from my uni or a charity shop. Until I get a job, though, I'm going to find ways to earn some money through either Adsense on here or some similar way on my tumblr. Another option is trying to publish my (frankly crap) poetry, but that's something I'll look into when I feel more confident with my skill as a writer.

The girl, the hair, the deflated ego.


Older followers are probably thinking why I have changed my blog's name. Well, as I'm no longer identifying as a goth, I felt sticking to the alternative name was a tad redundant. The new blog title is more representative of me right now: still young, but very thoughtful and creative, and trying to grow up.

Now, being a literature student, I feel I may start doing some book reviews on here, both on books I'm studying and ones I'm reading for *gasp* fun! The information posts will still happen, and I plan on doing posts on historical figures I like, and maybe a post or two on phones/technology, as I've had way too much recent experience in that field.

Like the new look (of the blog/me)? Want to suggest things for me to talk about? Have any idea how I can change my author name on here? Then comment away!

E x