Writing something akin to a blog is not something I typically do, so when I started to think about how to start off my very first post I though I would say something I never thought I would say…It was a tad rainy in England today.
Today was the first day of the course, but I will start this tail a couple of days ago. In order to get to the University of Warwick where we are staying for the three weeks, it took planes, trains, and automobiles. A car ride up to Montreal, a plane ride over to England via Iceland, and a train ride and a bus ride to Coventry and the University respectively. Nothing to note really about the travels except two things: in Icelandic economy comfort is translated as first class, and it all added up to about 22 hours straight of travelling door to door. But in the end I arrived with no hassles and everything was fine.
Also, somehow in that time frame I managed to do some impromptu sight seeing. It was a 15-20min walk from the train station to the bus station in Coventry. So of course I did the sensible thing to do and just started walking through a city I’ve never been to before and looked around for a bus station. Luckily not long after I started I found signs pointing out different landmarks, and one happened to be a bus station. So I follow these signs and go down some roads, pedestrian walks, with just your general run of the mill 17th C. buildings along the way. I’m looking at all this and taking it in, then I turn a corner, see some kids on skateboards in a little square, then look up to my left and all of a sudden I am face to face with the bombed out ruins of the Coventry Cathedral. I am pretty sure the phrase “shock and awe” was invented for moments like this. Now I knew the cathedral was somewhere close. Those signs I just mentioned had the cathedral listed as the way I was going. But when you turn a corner and are then just facing this structure, words can fail you. It isn’t something that happens very much in Almonte. I’m not going to go into any detail about the cathedral now because we are visiting Coventry tomorrow and will be covering it then. I guess I’ll just close this thought by saying that I then walked two blocks to the bus station and took a bus to the university. I know it’s a dull thing to end a paragraph with, but I didn’t want to leave you in suspence about my journey and if I made it to the elusive bus station.
Now that everyone is caught up, I can start with what we did today. But don’t hold your breath, it wasn’t much. All today was was an overview of the course logistics and requirements, and I doubt you are here to read about those. BUT, our teacher Professor Coffman did do a BBQ supper for us as a welcome which was quite excellent. In total there are 12 students, 1 professor, and many buildings yet to see.
I’m not going to write out a list of what we are going to see each day, not becasue it is too much work or that there is no schedule, but because I want to try and convey what I experianced by running into a bombed out cathedral. It is hard to do in a blog, but I’m hoping that the unexpectedness of each post might give the same sense of surprise.
No pictures yet, all picture taking devises were either packed or on low battery and needed to be preserved for any last minute travel needs. But starting tomorrow, all that will change.