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O Fim duma Viagem

And on Wednesdays I question my sanity

USA | Saturday, 26 September 2015 | Views [193]

I'd succeeded in changing my TD section, though it didn't feel like a terribly dramatic change. It was the same day of the week, same time, same building, and even the same floor. Basically, everything was the same except that the professor was different and it was one room over. The packet of questions was even the same.

Apparently, this class had gotten even further in the packet than we had, since last week we'd stopped after exercise 7, and we picked up on exercise 8. There was also a question on homeomorphisms this class, which I'm pretty sure is not something we'd covered in class yet. So basically the TD and CM professors don't talk to each other and I will need to be reading ahead in the online notes to follow what's going on. Yay.

On the plus side, the professor was much, much easier to understand. I didn't need to choose between listening to him and writing down what was on the board. On the negative side, be did not give us a break. 3 straight hours of sitting working on topology that I only quarter-understood. It was bringing back "fond" memories of the summer.

After that came a much needed one-hour break before Russian. Wednesdays are certainly not my longest days, but they do have both of my most exhausting classes one right after the other. I should consider doing fun things in the morning to compensate.

Russian definitely went better than last week, in large part because we had a packet to work out of. And the questions were rather straightforward, with the hardest ones being where you had to read the sentence, decide what verb went there, and conjugate it. Nothing too difficult, other than the step where we needed to then translate the sentence.

Some of my translational issues would have been shared with the others. Like "I can tell it's talking about a singer, so the verb here is sing, but I don't actually know what this sentence is saying." Other times my translation problems were French related, ranging from vocabulary (what is the French word for pie?) to grammar (wash my face... That's reflexive in French, right? And it's in past tense, so is that passé composé or imparfait?)

We also went around the room asking each other questions about food. The answers tended to be pretty short, which was nice. And, since my food vocabulary was decently strong, I felt way more comfortable answering. Towards the end of the class, I was even able to form a not-completely-simple sentence, (I eat soup when it's cold) which made me feel slightly better.

Finally, we concluded the class with music. The instructor gave us the lyrics, then she read through slowly, having us repeat each line after her. Then again, this time for meaning. (I was surprised by how many individual words I was able to recognise.) And finally, we were ready to listen to it and watch the music video.

The song was by Братья Грим (Brothers Grim) and was called Веринисв (Come back.) The video was slightly strange, featuring steampunk and mob scenes, but the music was very good, and the words were easy enough to understand. (Much easier than operatic Italian, without question.) It was a very sad song with some lovely lines. (“Do you know that I’m all alone, like a submarine under the ice?”) And it was nice to be able to listen to Russian in a more natural context. Plus, there was nothing expected from me other than to listen and try to understand, which made for a relaxing end to the class.

Once the day was over, all I really wanted was a pastry and a cup of tea. Mille Feuille and Love Tea #7. The tea was waiting in a cupboard for me, but the pastry was a challenge. See, on Wednesdays, the patisserie near me is closed. And, if I returned to my apartment, I would need to struggle to find a patisserie that was open until 10. Fortunately, I remembered that my bakery was closed and, it being Paris, I was able to find an open patisserie on the way back. I don't think the Mille Feuille was as good as my bakery's, but that might have just been personal bias.

And that was my Wednesday. Nothing in the morning, five long hours of classes, and then curling in a ball and trying to work up the energy to do anything for the rest of the night. I should really consider doing something in the morning to make Wednesdays more fun.

 

Tags: music, pastries, russian, topology

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