18 December 2008

Students' Last Night in London!!!!

Well on our last night in London (Sunday) we decided to get together and meet at the Crypt at St. Martin's where we began our semester for some bread and butter pudding and hot custard. When we arrived, it was closed! Ferme as they say in French. I looked around to see if Jonathan Kennedy was nearby. As some of you know, whenever I travel or go anywhere with Jonathan everything and every place we go is usually closed. It is his curse. But he was nowhere to be found. So we decided to just walk around and take in the city for one last time. Here are some of the things we did and saw. Curtis, Ali, Bern, and Caitlin were going to leave the next day and Joe was leaving on Tuesday. I went to Roger's funeral the next day which had a very nice service and a Roger style party afterwards. We will miss him! I leave this coming Monday for Rhode Island. Spending the last few days packing things up, last minute Christmas shopping, last minute meetings, and putting things into storage for next year. Enjoy the photos!

How many SMU students can we pack into two British phonebooths!

The Fun Fair in Leicester Square.

Merry-go-round...a chicken?

Charlie Chaplin and Curtis

Ali getting help with the bumper car...he stayed with her the whole ride!

Curtis going in for the kill....

Bern knowing that she is going to get hit by Caitlin, Joe, and Curtis...Ali is still being pushed around.

Curtis and Bern...and Ali

We wandered towards Piccadilly Circus and saw the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Machine at Ripley's Believe It or Not.

The Machine

A close up of The Machine

A very tall Carmine Maranda...Ali's loved this....not!

Lights on Regent Street...where we went window shopping!

Ali and Caitlin getting a Christmas coffee at Starbucks

Bern, Miss Fair Trade Coffee, is not happy about it!

Continuing down Regent Street

Hamleys Toy Store

An elf saying Hello to us!

The group in front of Hamleys

We then wandered down Carnaby Street

Hanging snowmen all the way down the street

The group...

Shakespeare's Head Pub

The head hanging out the window

Happy Holidays Everyone!!!!!!

12 December 2008

Dublin: Week Two

Curtis and Joe rehearsing a scene from Philadelphia Here I Come

Once we returned from Galway things started picking up with the acting classes with Martin and Patrick and the literature class with Denis. The students toured City Hall Monday morning and the Guinness Brewery in the late afternoon. One of the amazing aspects of the brewery is the all glass 360 degree Sky Bar on the top floor where you get a free Guinness. The view of Dublin is spectacular!! Bill cooked us all a fantastic barbeque chicken dinner that evening.
On Tuesday we went to The Book of Kells; however, the original book is temporarily not being displayed and there is a replica in its place. We enjoyed the library on the second floor where Harry Potter was filmed. After Martin's acting class we went to the Project Theatre to see The Walworth Farce, a very funny, yet, intense play. Actually, it was pretty disturbing but incredible.
Wednesday evening after acting class with Patrick, the students cooked dinner for Patrick. It was a Waiting for Godot theme complete with handmade menus. Each of the four courses related somehow to the play. And, of course, the last course, Irish Coffee, never appeared. We are still waiting for it!
On Thursday we were supposed to see Patrick's play, Iscariot, but Charlie, the actor, was filming a movie which got extended and he could not make it. Instead we had lunch at Brewley's Cafe and saw a production of David Sedaris' Santaland Diaries which was hilarious! The soup and brown bread was also great. On Thursday evening Bill and I cooked a pre-final (showcase) breakfast at 10:30pm. Bill made french toast and I cooked fried eggs, toast, and Red Ryder homefries!!!
The rest of the time was spent rehearsing for the showcase which was held at 5:15 on Friday. It was attended by the first year Gaiety students. The SMU students performed 14 scenes for an hour performance. Super job!!!!! After Patrick, Amy, and Martin took us to the Irish Film Center for a reception. Great way to end our time in Dublin.
On Saturday Patrick and I had an Irish breakfast while the students took in Dublin for the last time. Then we were off to the airport and back to London. Bill and Dani leave today(Sunday) for the States. Curtis, Ali, Bern, and Caitlin leave tomorrow and Joe leaves on Tuesday. Tomorrow I will attend Roger's funeral and fly back to the States on the 22nd.

The tour begins

What is it like to be inside a pint of Guinness?

Curt and Bern in front of the waterfall...

Ali and Caitlin also in front of the waterfall....

Students on the top floor of the Sky Bar

One of the great views of Dublin from the Sky Bar.
What is on the tip of your nose Ali?

Santa on Grafton Street in Dublin taking a "break"!!!!

Where we saw Oedipus Loves You and The Walworth Farce.

Ali, Bern, and Joe outside The Project Arts Center

The menu....

Welcoming Patrick!!!

Patrick and I loved the meal and gave it a "thumbs up"!

They had him thinking this was his meal....so Godot....

After Caitlin's five layer mexican dip and Dani'scream cheese dip with chips. The main course was chicken stuffed with spinach and feta, twice baked potatoes, and carrots in brown sugar....Dani's contribution. We finished with Bern's chocolate molten cake and Ali's chocolate pecan pie....yummy!!!! Again, the Irish coffee never showed up!

Enjoying the main course.

Patrick admiring the chocolate cake and pecan pie...He, of course, had both!

Caitlin and Ali playing Greensleeves on their "tin whistles". Ask them to play for you when they return to SMU.

Rehearsing before the showcase.

Ali waiting to make her entrance.

Rehearsing Philadelphia Here I Come.

Caitlin and Bern in a scene from Dancing at Lughnasa.

Dani in a scene from Dancing at Lughnasa.

Dani, Caitlin, Bern, and Ali in a scene from Dancing at Lughnasa.

End of the Lughnasa scene. Caitlin and Ali.

Martin giving notes before the showcase.

Part of the Dancing at Lughnasa scene

Showcase celebration at the Irish Film Center.

We have had a great semester and I am looking forward to next year!!!! Also things are looking really good for 8 students from Rose Bruford coming to Saint Mary's in the fall to study with us for a year.