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Welcome to WOU’s Photoblog for Students Abroad!

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I’m pleased to introduce you to WOU’s photoblog for students who are studying or interning abroad.  I  invite you to follow our students on their journeys from pre-departure preparation through the return home.

Photoblogging is a wonderful way for students to share what they are learning, observing, and discovering in their new environments.  Enjoy the journey with them!

WOU’s photoblog is modeled on the Australian “Bringing the Learning Home” project developed by Jan Gothard, Greg Downey, Tonia Gray, and Linda Butcher, and with their permission, utilizes some of the materials from that project.  http://ozstudentsabroad.com/

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Returning Home

I’m going to miss Argentina. My host mother was fantastic, I nearly cried saying goodbye to her today. All the friends from my program were hard to wish well. I’m going to miss the view of the river I get everyday walking along the bank, and defiantly the food.

For our last day, we made dessert in Spanish. It was amazing.

For our last day, we made dessert in Spanish. It was amazing.

I will not miss taxis though. Getting to my hotel in Buenos Aires was a test of patience because of my taxi driver. The man got lost and went past the exit for a good twenty minutes, then had to turn around and come back. So I got charged extra which I am not pleased about.

Vamos Argentina! Party at the monument!

Vamos Argentina! Party at the monument!

Not to mention flying. Whoever thought showing us the movies Flight a week before we all left is an idiot. The entire movie is about a horrific plane crash so during turbulence all I could think was “oh my god I’m going to die!”

So I’ve realized that while I’ll miss the people in Rosario and the places there, I won’t miss traveling itself at all.

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Week 6: In the Homestretch

Well week 6 has come and gone and I can safely say that even though I am loving Scotland, I am missing my family. These last couple of weeks have gone by much faster than I thought they would and now I have to start thinking about packing and how I will fit everything into my suitcase.

Since I last wrote, I have done a lot of work at my internship with the School of Sport. I got to assist in two bicycle trials where we measured lactate levels in the blood during different difficulties of cycling and also compared them to the participant’s heart rate and other values we took during the trials. During the first trial, I mostly observed and just handed things to people when they needed them so that I could get the feel for the trial protocol and such. Then during the second trial, they let me take the helm. I got to take the blood samples (which I thought was really cool) to test the lactate levels and also controlled the resistance on the bike. Even though I was really nervous, I feel like I did very well and I learned a lot from it.

Another big part of my internship with the School of Sport is data analysis. I have been taking the data from the trials and putting them into Excel to make spreadsheets and charts. I also have been working on formatting a feedback form for the participants of the studies so that they can see their results as well.

The Tower Bridge

The Tower Bridge

Apart from my internship, I took another trip to London with two of my roommates and it was a wonderful trip. We saw and did so much that I can’t believe we fit it all into only three days. The highlight of my weekend had to be going to the Harry Potter Studio Tour. It was amazing to see where the films were actually shot and walk on the sets. It was surreal to be there, the detail in all of the props and sets was astounding to see. We also got to try butterbeer, which was delicious.

At the studio tour!!

At the studio tour!!

The Hogwarts Castle Model

The Hogwarts Castle Model

While in London we also saw the Tower of London, the Tower Bridge, Westminster Abbey, Baker Street, Paddington Station, Piccadilly, Kensington Palace, Hyde Park, and even did a night bus tour of the city. The night tour was one of my favorites because it gave us a chance to see the whole city all lit up, it was also a very warm evening so that we didn’t get cold sitting in the open top of the bus.

Night bus tour view of the London Eye

Night bus tour view of the London Eye

Rainbow we saw from the train back to Scotland

Rainbow we saw from the train back to Scotland

Another week has passed, which is a happy and sad thing. I can’t wrap my head around the fact that I have spent over six weeks here now. I can’t wait to see what my last two weeks in Scotland will bring!

Natalie

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Week Five: Now It’s Time to Leave

This last week in Argentina was incredibly hectic. All of my finals were on two days, so I slammed out two tests and turned in a term paper. While happy it was over, I found myself sad that I would  be leaving Argentina in the next week.

Also, Mat, his friend and I all had an adventure after finals on Thursday. We all got asado to go but realized there was no where to eat it seeing how it was 8:45 at night. So we hunkered down on a street corner and started to eat the best barbequed steak and chicken I have ever had. We had no silverware so it looked pretty silly. Half way through we realized people were giving us these dirty looks and then Mat and I remembered something. In class, that morning, our teacher told us it was culturally unacceptable to eat in the street. …But we still did it anyways.

It was made even more bittersweet in our final Spanish class. Five out of eight were there and we made sweets with the teachers. It was nice to just sit and talk, but also hard. The majority of my class is there for ten weeks and I had to deal with knowing I would probably never see them again.

For our last day, we made dessert in Spanish. It was amazing.

For our last day, we made dessert in Spanish. It was amazing.

However, they did offer for my 21st birthday this next year to head down to Eugene (where they all go to school) and will take me out drinking. It’s an on going joke with us that they’ll take me out for drinks because I don’t drink…

I’ll miss them, it’ll be hard to go to Spanish next year and not see them sitting there begging the teachers for how to ask where the toilet paper is… (this was the first thing we learned)

All of us together on our last day of class.

All of us together on our last day of class.

Following this we had the goodbye dinner. The majority of kids turned up and it was again wonderful but emotional. After spending ten weeks with the same 26 people, it’s hard to think that I probably won’t ever see them again…

The goodbye dinner with my friends Isamar and Karina.

The goodbye dinner with my friends Isamar and Karina.

On the left is my Grammar teacher and the right is my Conversation teacher.

On the left is my Grammar teacher and the right is my Conversation teacher.

Of course this weekend was for hanging out with my friends. We celebrated Isamar’s birthday and watched the Peruvian Festival. It was fun, and I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that I won’t be here next week to see what’s happening at the river.

Festival for Peruvian heritage in Rosario Argentina.

Festival for Peruvian heritage in Rosario Argentina.

My last day was also fun. I hung out with Naomi and Karen, and two of Naomi’s friends came and met with us. It was a good group and we looked at the stalls and had fun walking by the river. Afterwards I headed home and picked up some flowers as a gift for my host mother.

Dinner tonight was another adventure. Monica was out with friends so around 8 I went to a restaurant I wanted to try and got some food to go. When I came home, Monica was there. Turns out she came home to cook me a pizza and wanted to know why I had bought this food. I of course, in my terrible Spanish, explain it was because I thought she was out eating with friends. I then declared the food a present and we split it. Tomorrow we’ll be eating the pizza for lunch, which I look forward to.

My last day in Rosario.

My last day in Rosario.

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Week 4

This week has been pretty crazy because technically it has been dead week but I have survived the week.  Besides doing homework I went out with friends to the centro on Friday and went shopping.  The centro is pretty amazing because all the culture of Queretaro culminates in one place.  I had a great time walking around and had fun with friends.  On Saturday I went to a water park with my host family and got to ride a raft.  In the end this week has been stressful but also fun.  I look forward to my last week as being bittersweet.  I get to go home but I am going to miss my host family and the wonderful city of Queretaro.  Goodbye for now.

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http://www.google.com.mx/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&docid=reDTZXLMZ6tq4M&tbnid=EbM8Xw3NawNKIM:&ved=0CAUQjRw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.aquiqueretaro.com%2FintrogaleriaA.htm&ei=qKDVU6LFLqbH8AHk54CQAQ&bvm=bv.71778758,d.b2U&psig=AFQjCNFo_7Ql6agXQcCKRveei4l4KjCcXQ&ust=1406595616569625

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Goodbye Argentina.

So this is it. This last Friday was the last day of the program and we had our goodbye dinner. It was sad and exciting. It was a little sad because I’ve made new friends that I will not get to see often. But it was also exciting because it was the conclusion of a wonderful experience. Although I would have loved to do ten weeks instead of five, I am excited to go home. I am also excited to be done with classes. This last week has been stressful with finals and getting ready to leave. I also made enchildas for my host family, which was very interesting because people here in Argentina do not eat chile. Now i’m staying in Buenos Aires for a little over a day before my flight leaves

I am incredibly glad that I chose Argentina as my study abroad destination. The stereotypes that I had encountered of Argentinians turned out to be wrong. I have met very nice people. I have learned of some social norms that I otherwise would not have learned and a different dialect of spanish. I have loved this experience and hope to some day return to Argentina. photo 4 (2)   photo 3 (1)   photo 2 (3)   photo 1 (3)

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Week Two: London

This week has been much better than the last and I’ve finally begun to enjoy London. Probably what was the turning point was after talking to my parents on Sunday, I made a list of what I wanted to see and I’ve already crossed two things off of the list! On Monday evening, my friends and I headed to Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens so I could finally see the Peter Pan statue in person. It was worth the trip! After 15 years of wanting to see it and it was wonderful! Following the statue, we found the Princess Diana’s Memorial and soaked our tired feet in it.
The field trips this week were to Hampton Court Palace and The Tempest (Shakespeare) and the Imperial War Museum to see the World War I exhibit (history). Both were good trips, the Palace was absolutely beautiful and full of so much history and the War Museum was very informative. The Tempest, however, was bad. Some of the characters were puppets and others were masks. It was too out there for me and left me more confused as ever.
Today I went out on my own for the second time and was finally able to master the tube! I went to the Twining’s Tea Shop and Museum and bought a rather cool gift for my big brother and then I wandered down to the main campus of King’s College, found the shop and bought a shirt to remember the school.
Tomorrow I head to Stonehenge and then Salisbury. It’s going to be great finally seeing the real Stonehenge after visiting the replica in Washington for many years.

~Kallan

Below in order: The Peter Pan Statue, Hampton Court Palace, and a Spitfire Airplane at the Imperial War Museum.

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A Jolly Good Time

It’s so hard to find time to post a blog when your so busy enjoying the city!

London is stunning and so far I’m having a great time. The bus and Tube system were easier to navigate than I thought they’d be, so I’ve gotten around to a lot of great places. Buckingham Palace, and the Tower of London were some of my favorites so far. Also all they parks here are fabulous, I could get lost in them for hours and be perfectly happy. With my class I’ve gone to see some shows, which of course were fantastic. This weekend I’m going to see Wicked with some classmates and I am beyond excited. I was worried I over packed, which I definitely did. However, with so many extra clothes I don’t have to fuss about with laundry! Yesterday I found out ranch dressing, or dip, isn’t a thing here. I guess it’s not normally available. Which is so odd to me, and kind of sucks because I put ranch on everything! Also there are no public water fountains anywhere, and that’s lame when you thirsty whilst out and about town.

The line for this was a bit ridiculous!

The line for this was a bit ridiculous!

Bus Selfies!

Bus Selfies!

Peter Pan statue in the park

Peter Pan statue in the park

The Palace!

The Palace!

The weather has been very warm, I’m hoping it will get cooler soon! I cant wait for more adventures to come!

Cheers,

Courtney

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Week 3

I know it is technically week 4 but I have been really busy doing homework so I will talk about week 3.  Last week was busy because of homework and  a lot of different events.  I had a lot of homework that took a lot of time to do but I also had a great week.  I went out with friends on Friday and on Saturday my friends and I went to San Miguel Allende all day.  I had a great time shopping in the tiny stores and going to the hot springs.  They were not what I expected because I thought they would be more open and under a waterfall.  I was a little sad at first but I had a blast swimming in the hot and cool water there.  All in all last week might have been stressful but I also had a great time spending time with friends.

Colorful Steet, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico   escondito

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Week One: London

My first week in London was alright, though I spent the majority of the time wanting to go home. It wasn’t that I disliked London or was having homesickness, it was the heat and jet lag. The first weekend was crazy. With too much stuff happening at one time, I was glad when classes started Monday. It was something normal in a sea of chaos. I really like my classes and my professors are nice. Last week also marked the beginning of field trips, both class related and not. For history, we visited the Churchill War Rooms and it was amazing being in such an important place and knowing that during the war, no one knew that Churchill and his team were working only a few feet under London. In English, we visited Shakespeare’s Globe, the Rose theatre, and Richard III with Martin Freeman. It was a really busy day, but a dream come true to a English major. On Friday, I went on the weekend excursion to Edinburgh, Scotland. On my gosh, Scotland is so beautiful and the weather was so nice, (it reminded me of Oregon). On Saturday it was raining and foggy, making everything more magical. I’d go back to Scotland any day.

~Kallan

Below in order: Winston Churchill, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, and foggy Scotland

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Week 2 in London!

Hello again!

This is my second week being in London! How time has flown by! Classes are going well it seems really relaxed, most of the topics we discuss in class are all based on discussion and personal experience. Since my last blog I had the opportunity to go to platform 9 and 3/4 and to Edinburgh, Scotland. That was quite an adventure, upon arriving we visited the castle, where we saw the crown jewels, prison, and a small church. While we were there it was raining and windy, reminded me of being at the beach. But it was still gorgeous. We went to dinner at a restaurant and had desert. The desert was so delicious! I had blended raspberry with whiskey, and also tried another whiskey that was honey and it was really good. Trying to come back to London was a nightmare, we had missed the last train, which we were not aware of, and had to find a place to stay with some friends, after all that struggle, we finally made it back to London. The train ride back was awful, we were in a cart that had no air conditioning and the train was a lot longer than getting there. We finally made it back to campus and was relieved.

Monday we had classes, went to lunch, then rested, after that went to dinner and went to Kensington Gardens where we saw the statue of Peter Pan and the waterfall memorial for Princess Diana. The park was amazing. Everything was nice. We walked along the path and passed a bridge, got to see the sun set, and then walked into town to finish our night with some ice cream.

Still enjoying my time abroad, but I am starting to miss my family, I don’t want to leave London, but if only my family and friends were down here! Another thing I miss is having access to water fountains! Until next time!

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The crown Jewels in Scotland

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