Thursday, January 12, 2012

Mexican & Fire Alarms

Heinz packets - some different from in the US
Thursday I spent the morning taking it easy and not doing too much aside from going to the bookshop to look for a few of my textbooks. After that, I grabbed lunch at a pub with a friend and had my first English fish and chips! It was really delicious, though it would be better with American ketchup. The ketchup here (which is still by Heinz) tastes very sweet and it is off-putting. I much prefer the more savory flavor of ketchup back home, so while I'm here I sort of avoid using ketchup. Apparently the one by Sainsbury's is less sweet according to some of my British friends, but it is very weird that there's a difference. So because I don't care for the ketchup here, I used salt and malt vinegar for flavoring of the meal and it was very good still.

After getting lunch I hung around awhile and listened to music and tidied up my flat a bit before getting ready to go to the mall and a later dinner with friends. We had plans to go to Westfield to eat at Wahaca (a Mexican restaurant here) and browse the shops for a bit. I bought a pair of black heels from a place called Parmars (they were under £25, just needed a new pair of patent ones) and a pair of olive green leather gloves from Primark. I thought Primark was so cool but didn't get enough time to thoroughly look through everything and pick out what I wanted to try on so I'm sure I'll be at a Primark at another time soon to look better. They are so unbelievably cheap! I think I might try to get a new jacket and a few sweaters while I'm here from there.

Proper fish and chips!
After that we headed back to campus and got ready to meet some of my flatmates at a local pub that is frequented by a lot of students. It was so unbelievably crowded in there, it was insane! The music they played was also a bit weird, they played James Brown and music from decades ago, which was a bit odd considering the crowd. Eventually we migrated outside and chatted with some of the students I've met who are from America and as we were leaving the police came because the pub failed to monitor the capacity or the sidewalks properly. I still had a pretty fun time but apparently it's normally not that crowded which is good to know.

A friend and I at Wahaca
Following that whole fiasco we all hung out at the flats for awhile and chatted for a few hours. Then, randomly the fire alarm sounded and everyone had to evacuate the building for almost 30 minutes. It was rather annoying because they go through a checklist to ensure that everyone has left the premises and is outside but it takes ages to do and is really inefficient. Fire alarms that go off because someone set them off back in the US aren't nearly as lengthy to sort out. It was pretty cold outside so that wasn't the most fun. That's basically it for now though - until next time, thanks for reading.

Fire alarm group shot!