August 25th - Definitely real now. Connections have been made. Students have arrived and excited to get started with classes next week. Darwin syllabus done...working on Chocolate now. Coolest chocolate bit lately = paid for poem on the spot on the South Bank. First day of class will be fun to dissect. Will try to get in the habit of blogging more often...I more recap on Facebook but some topic deserve more thought.
Must be all ready to go by July 1st. Overall, a total of 50 days until I fly away to London. 81 days until move-in at the London flat. 90 days until the students arrive.
Calendar starting to come together: Move-in on August 15th. Supermom Vicki & Hubbie David help me get settled until August 28th. Tentative overnight trip to Cambridge: September 9-10th Tentative overnight trip to Bath/Stonehenge: September 30-October 1st. Tentative weekend in Edinburgh: October 28 - 30th.
Fall Break: October 14 - 24th. Departure: December 15th.
Early trip to Iceland booked. Pre-move in London trip to Brighton and Isle of Wight booked. Need to figure out what is happening between 7/22 and 8/10.
It's seriously getting real. Can't believe I'll be gone for almost 5+ months. And then when I get back, new fuzzy friends. Lots to do between now and then but I'm finally feeling more like myself. Just let me know if/when you want to come visit.
Apologies for not using this blog extensively since we canceled the first SU London science semester. But, we have a great class of 24 students with applications approved and today I bought a PLANE TICKET across the pond! July 14 - Dec 15. I'll have a month of chill time before things get busy and the apartment in London will be ready for move-in. Working now to set up a calendar for visitors!
Covid-19 pretty much nixed all study abroad opportunities over the past year, including my planned semester in London for Fall 2020. BUT, I'm happy to report that we are back on for Fall 2022. It will be good to start thinking about all of that again soon.
Wow - July to October went quickly. Now just wrapping up my time at the Brighton Chocolate Festival. Gave a talk each day and enjoyed meeting some of the UK chocolate people, especially bean to bar maker James from J Cocoa. Andrew Baker of a Bean to Bar Guide to UK Chocolate, Organizer and artist Susan Sheen and fellow chocolate judges Cherrie Lo and Estela Duque. All made possible by connections with Albert Chau from Fifth Dimension Chocolates.
Textbook for 2020 London Chocolate Course - check. Bean to bar maker agreed to visit - check. Option for students to take Day Trip to Brighton for chocolate - check.
Also - made housing plans for the flat just a quick jaunt from Waterloo Station and meeting with the IES staff tomorrow and taking a look at the new dorm location. Didn't post here about an amazing tasting that i also did at the Corinthia. Having no problem just integrating into London life. Feeling good about the decision to push my chocolate boundaries even further.
This was me in Fall 2016 in London. I spent the week judging the World Finals for the International Chocolate Awards and soaking in Chocolate Week. Even though stayed with a Southwestern friend and colleague teaching in our London semester, I really did not think "this could be me in four years." Hard to leave the girly dogs for long stretches and research on apple snails has tended to take up all my international travel time. However, the possibility to teach my chocolate class and develop a new interdisciplinary class on Darwin seemed too good to pass up. Fortunately have super friends and support network to care for girly dogs as needs be.
So, come Fall 2020, come visit me in London! Just 401 days away according to my countdown app...I'm going to use this blog as a way to brainstorm and organize as the next year will inevitably go crazy fast. Hoping to work on some recruitment materials. Starting to look for a place to stay. Planning a quick trip over this Fall Break for the 2019 Brighton Chocolate Festival.
Please feel free to reply with any suggestions or advice!