mk_tortie: (hot fuzz bushy beard)
Oh, I am seriously the QUEEN of procrastination. I don't even want to type how much I still have to write before Tuesday at 4. Bloody hell.... sooner or later what I need to say will all come together in my head, and then I can make it make sense on paper, but until them I'm screwed. Summarising each section is helping though. I just always know that if I allowed more time to write essays, I could write them much better. But on the other hand, no matter how much time I allow myself, I always seem to end up procrastinating until the very last minute. So maybe I'm just incapable of writing essays in plenty of time? Blergh.

On the other hand, I got an A on one of the essays I've already had back, and an A+ on the other, and I wrote both of those overnight and at the last minute, so maybe writing stuff like that just works for me? It's definitely not good for my peace of mind though... :/ Meh.
mk_tortie: (berlin sunset)
This is giving me a strange sense of deja-vu writing this... guess where I am guys?!? I'm in the Humboldt's PC-Pool! Yes, I am on a flying visit to Berlin to try and persuade my lecturers here to give me my marks back from Berlin, and I realised that my Humboldt login still works, so I'm browsing the net until I have to go get my flight. Sorry for the long disappearance from LJ-Land - I have no internet in my new flat right now so I won't be around much until it gets installed. The new flat is amazing though, and there will be pictures soon!

It's been really great being back in Berlin, although it's made me even more aware of how much more at home I feel here than in London right now. I went out with the tour guides last night and I feel so happy around them. They're a really friendly, open, accepting bunch of people and it makes them a really nice group to spend time with. I miss that a lot, as well as just the general atmosphere of Berlin in comparison to London. I was walking through Monbijou Park yesterday and just felt totally like I'd never left Berlin in the first place.

I have a new plan for post-degree now, because I realised I wanted to come back to Berlin. So the plan is to graduate, finish out my rental period on my flat working in London (I'm now a London tour guide, btw! I passed my test tour on Sunday, hurrah!) and then move back to Berlin for about 6 months to do the tour guiding thing, earn a load of money, and then go travelling for a couple of months. I want to go to the States, NZ and Australia, and then come back through Asia and maybe Eastern Europe. I shall see how it goes with the cash. After the travelling I want to move to France for a year and after that, who knows? But I think that's a pretty good sounding plan :D My sister is really up for moving to Berlin with me which could be pretty fun as well.

I also can't remember if I posted about this before, but I'm directing a play this year too, in April. We finally decided which one! It's going to be 'Forever Godard' by Igor Bauersima... hopefully it's going to be the best play the German soc has ever seen... fingers crossed, at least! We're going to fit music and dance and a tonne of film as well (of course, since it's named after Jean-Luc Godard) into it... I have been mentally (and sometimes really) squeeing every time I think about it, hehe. So exciting!

Anyway, I thought I'd update about my life right now. I actually have a whole essay, practically, about my thoughts on my year abroad ready to post, but it's on my laptop at home so that might have to wait til I get the net. Also, I'm buying a PC just so I can play the Sims,pretty much... I feel like such a geek!

On that note... have a good week everyone, comment and update me on exciting things going on for you all because I won't have much time to check my f-list over the next week or so, and I will be back in full force soon!!
mk_tortie: (tiger)
I'm not going to be around too much for the next week or so, I would say - don't really have internet at home right now and I've got so much on anyway that I've barely got time to go near a computer! The only reason I'm on right now is to 'revise' (ie procrastinate) for my oral exam on Thursday... eergh. That is, the 40 minute oral exam that is worth the same as my whole FIRST YEAR. Yes, I am scared!
mk_tortie: (wales)
Woohoo! Essays are done, just translating them now. Finally, the torment is reaching it's end.

Also, Apparently the president of my SU has been suspended for racist comments at an NUS national meeting... I'm taking the whole thing with a pinch of salt, to be honest, mainly because many of the 'facts' seem to come from hearsay and the Daily Mail, but still. Way to make King's look good, people! *sigh*

A todo list as a reminder to myself )
mk_tortie: (holy grail king arthur)
I never really believed it was possible to fall in love with a city this much before. But honestly, I really, really don't want to leave Berlin. The idea of just staying, tour guiding, and hanging around and discovering the city for a year, with nothing to worry about other than maybe trying to get some gigs is so incredibly tempting right now. I'm so fed up with the 24 hour pressure of academia - because you can never escape it. At least, if you're a total perfectionist but also incredibly unmotivated like me then you can never escape it, because there's always something you should be studying, an essay you should be writing, and even in the summer, there's something you could be learning to make the next year easier. I've had exams every single year since I was 14 and to be honest, I'm utterly, utterly sick of the whole thing. I just want to escape, and Berlin is an escapist's paradise, and this job is the perfect escapist's job. I don't want to go home.

I suppose this could be a sense of teenage rebellion making a belated entrance into my life. I think the thing I disliked about this year was being forced to be here. And now I dislike being forced to leave - I dislike the way that my university/my degree limits my freedom like that. I was never a rebellious teenager at all - maybe it's coming out now? But I suppose I also know that I will never recreate this sensation of being right here, right now, even if I come back once I finish my degree - Berlin will never be to me what it is right now. I feel like I'm leaving just as something is starting that could make me very happy and content, at least for a while, and it really bugs me.

Oh well, I suppose I should go back to writing about Mulholland Drive. I also have far, far too much to say for this essay - why do I always pick topics I could write a dissertation on? I already have ten pages of handwritten notes and I'm only halfway through the secondary literature... and I haven't even re-watched the film yet to make notes on that. Oh dear...

Happiness

Aug. 22nd, 2008 01:04 pm
mk_tortie: (i sing)
I just had a bit of a paradigm shift in mood. And I realised that my final year at uni is going to be amazing. I have the world laid out for me. I've already got a gig lined up, I know where I can get more. I'm going to direct an amazing play which will go down in German Society history, at least for the shock factor! (We want to do Justine del Corte's Sex, hehe... I know, I know, I am a small child) As soon as I get back to England (or maybe even before) I'm going to go on an incredible song-writing binge. And even if the essays I'm writing right now get shitty marks, I can still get a first at the end of my degree. Sometimes I still appreciate being able to deal with complicated formulas: I just put all my marks and some fairly pessimistic predictions for what I'm going to get for the rest of my degree into the formula they use for calculating your final grade, and it came out as about 73%. Which is a first! So yay. Not that I'm going to slack, but it makes me feel a bit happier in any case. So hooray for that.

I'm feeling pretty happy right now.
mk_tortie: (scribble)
When will I learn to do things before the absolute last minute?! Or even after that...? I am writing my presentation for tomorrow morning. I have yet to watch the whole film. I have yet to read all of the information. I have yet to write a handout. I have yet to work out anything coherent to say in English, never mind in German. And I am bright red from my tour today, and I only earned €20.

Once tomorrow is over, I will be so relieved!
mk_tortie: (scribble)
Oh dear... I'm supposed to be doing a presentation on Hauff's Die Errettung Fatmes tomorrow, and there is absolutely no secondary literature on it at all, so far as I can tell. And so far all I can say about it is that it's a fairytale, I can give a biography of Hauff, and I can confirm that none of the characters were real people and that it's not directly based on a story from Arabian Nights. This is going to be painful... The seminar's to do with Orientalism in German literature, and I can contrast the text to the Reiseberichte texts we were doing before, but so could anybody with half a brain so I'm not sure that's even worth doing... Ergh, I never have a clue what I'm supposed to say in these things! I was going to talk to the lecturer about it after last weeks class, but she didn't turn up last week so I've been left up the creek without a paddle, so to speak. I don't suppose anyone of my flist who speaks German happens to have studied Hauff in depth at all and can enlighten me as to what's so important about this story?
mk_tortie: (bears)
I saw a play this evening - I'm attempting to see one a week in preparation for my dissertation, because I want to write about current German theatre. This evening I saw Enter Sandmann by David Lindemann. I really enjoyed it; the cast were excellent, the staging was excellent, the idea was interesting... but I have a feeling I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I'd actually had a clue what was going on. The idea was a kind of reworking of 1980s sci-fi cliches into a futuristic fairy-tale setting - in a world where the human race has grown too numerous, the young got fed up and took over, forcing anyone over 21 into a compulsory 'deep sleep'. If they didn't register themselves willingly, trained hitmen would kill them. The play follows five people as they come to terms with this and find an escape into the 'outside', destroying the world as they know it in the process. Or at least... that's what I understood. However, there were a lot of details I just didn't get - like the fact that early on in the play, each of the five seemed to 'register' themselves for the 'deep sleep' at least once, and yet didn't seem to have to go through with it.

I did understand some of the points the playwright was trying to make, though, or at least I think I did. The characters were portrayed as very 'young' - childish in their reactions and responses to each other and the world around them. The metaphors were fairly obvious - dealing with growing up and the realities of sexuality, relationships, and controlling your own life/rebelling against those who have previously controlled your life. I think also in the context of Berlin it was interesting too - there was a music and film sequence at the end of the play where the characters finally break loose from the surroundings of the stage and are videoed walking through Berlin - except in the film they are walking forwards and everything else is moving backwards. One character played a song over the top which I didn't catch all of but repeated the line 'They're all fascists' over again, and I think also 'But I still like them'. I might be wrong about that though, I was concentrating on too many things at once to really do the whole listening comprehension thing! Another interesting thing was the pop culture references - the play opened with another musical sequence, in which the characters named film stars and celebrities, mainly from the Hollywood 'Golden Years' and sing 'Everything was good then' in between. And the characters themselves were costumed as film stereotypes - the cowboy, superman, the precocious doll-like little girl, the space age sex kitten, the guy in black leathers and sunglasses.

I think it's a play I'd definitely need to read to really get a sense of what's going on, but it's high up on my list of possible focus points.
mk_tortie: (drunk cat)
Funny story:

In order to do language courses at the language learning centre at the Humboldt, you have to do an online test. It lasts 30 mins and consists of 5 paragraphs where the second half of every second word is taken away. You have to fill the gaps, and you get a mark out of one hundred at the end, and that says what level classes you can do.

So, I want to take some classes for French, German and Spanish next semester, because it's way cheaper than at King's so I might as well! I did the French test first, and got 77/100, which pleasantly surprised me because that puts me at a similar level to my German 6 months ago, which is good because I've barely spoken French for over two years. So all well and good there. Then I did the Spanish one, and got 37/100, which is fine because my Spanish is awful. Then I did the German one...

Now, by this time I'd already spent an hour doing this, and I was feeling fairly blasé about the German test because I've already done it twice, and I got over 80 both times, and I've been speaking German for 6 months pretty much all day every day... so I did the test fairly quickly, didn't bother checking it over too hard, and clicked on the 'mark test' button after 10 out of the 30 mins.

I got 70/100.... which puts me in a lower level class than for French!!

Oops.

It's not really a problem because I've already done one German course there at the level I should be at, so all I need to do is take my certificate from then and show it to them (and say 'listen to me talking German to you. I should be in the high level class', as well) but it was kind of embarrassing... oh well.

(And I am slightly tipsy right now, hence the marvellous excuse to use my new icon, hee)

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