Wednesday, 29 August 2007


Here we go then my weekend away in Augusta for the first GRSP conclave was so much fun.
It took 5 hours for us all to get to August from Valdosta and although I was so sleepy I only managed to sleep for just over an hour. I think because I was so tired I just slept in a really odd position and then by the time I woke up I had this horrible pain in my side so then I could never really get comfortable.
So we arrived in this huge hotel and got a big hug from Janice who is like the coordinator of all the students. Then we checked in our luggage and got our picture taken as we get a year book at the end of the year. Then we had Mexican for lunch which was really tasty I liked that a lot. And so people just kept arriving and mingling which was nice. I got to see all the students from my home town Portobello and had a huge run up to hug my friend like those cheesy films it was sweet.

So then we had a lot of talking to be honest. They split it up so we had a nice break but wow there was a lot of talking.
They showed us a nice video at one point of really picturesque scenes of Georgia, however I don't know where any of them are which is a little annoying. Then at 4.00 we were given host parents for the weekend. I stayed with a lady who was so sweet I liked her a lot. Her house was full of tiny trinkets and thing it was amazing I loved it. And so she looked after me and the sweetest girl from Bulgaria who I just adore. She gave me this lovely little traditional wooden painted bottle type thing but it isn't like a bottle at all really, it holds rose oil as Bulgaria is famous for its rose oil. It sounds like beautiful country I think I would like to go one day, she told me that where she stays is very old so I think the buildings must be beautiful.

Then we all went out to a dinner with all the Rotarians, host families and students. I sat at the Bulgarian table with my friend from Scotland which was nice. We both ate a pie which was really tasty, very sweet.
Then all the students had to go up on the stage and say their name and country, which rotary club they were with and also their university. Which was a little scary to be honest so I think I may have just raced through it but hey. I wanted to say that I come fae bonnie Scotland in broad Scots accent but decided against it.
Then they gave us some freebies which was nice.

The next morning their were talks once again. Then we had our picture taken as a group which to be honest was torture! It was so warm outside and they kept having to move people about so we could be seen also I didn't want to be seen. I managed to spill some coffee on my nice new GRSP white polo shirt. I though that there was just a little in the bottom of the cup and I could still clap with it in my hand. Nope.

After lunch we had to get things ready for the performance that night. First we had to do the flags as we all walk in with a flag each side of the room and go up on stage. It was so funny though, we did it with music that sounded like a mix of star wars and Disney background music shoved together. I laughed. I was a little nervous too though that I would slip and fall and then it would be a domino effect with everyone behind me falling and all these flags falling on top of them and everyone would be like 'silly Scottish girl'. However it didn't happen so all is dandy.

Once we did the flags it was time to learn the Peace song. As my friend from Colombia is an amazing singer she was given the C.D. to take back and practice so she can sing it at our next conclave.

Then we all went in groups to practice our piece which was fun. We all just checked that we knew the Gay Gordons and then just spent the rest of the time having fun. We went back to Lin's so shower and change before we went back for the meal and performance. It was a buffet and my table were the first to go up so I got to find the biggest piece of chocolate cake. Then we did the flags and the song and all the little performances started.

There was a video about Colombia and they had a little dance and the girl from Malaysia did a fan dance which was so beautiful i loved it she looked amazing. Poland and Vietnam both played piano, not together they just both played. And the girl from Turkey danced by herself.
The four Bulgarians also performed two traditional dances.
The Gay Gordons went very well. Once showing the audience we asked if anyone wanted to come up and try so I danced with a little girl who was a part of a host family for another student, she must have been around 9 I think. She was lovely although it meant that I had to play the man which I am not quite used to but she looked so eager to come up that I couldn't say no. Of course it turned into a bit of a shambles but then again, that is what it is all about. Everyone had fun which is the main thing.

Once all the performances were done the Rotarians went home while the students danced in the hall. A lady played some salsa music and the usual pop music. We also requested that she play the Scottish music again so once again there was a mad shambles which was grand.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Hello everyone,

I just have time for a quick note. I have been away for the weekend in Augusta which is so pretty. It was the first Georgia Rotary Scholarship Programme conclave. It was a lot of fun and I have a lot to tell but being away I am now a little behind in my school work.
Once I have completed everything and am calm I shall give some more details. I have some photos but I am unsure how to put them on the blog.

Monday, 20 August 2007

Just a quick word today as I have work to be getting on with. I just wanted to let you know about my new discoveries. The first being drive in pharmacy?? you don't even have to go in the shop you can drive by a window, ask for some cotton wool and then drive away.
Also, you don't have to walk to the garage to pay for the petrol/gas you have just put in your car as there is a chip and pin machine next to the gas.

All of this possibly adds to how lazy people are getting now but at the same time, that is pretty good isn't it? Drive ins, you can't beat them.

Friday, 17 August 2007

I have just finished my first week of classes.
I think that they went alright but it is early days. I have already been able to make a couple of friends which is nice. The teachers also seem very nice. Ar first I was a little worried that I might have a struggle with the accents although I don't think that it will be a huge problem.
I was given homework straight away from all but one class. It hasn't been an issue though as most of my classes finish in the afternoon. I am just worried that I will think I have plenty time so do nothing.

I might be seeing a girl today that I met the day before yesterday and we started talking while waiting for our lunch. She was rather excited about the fact that I was Scottish and has told all her friends about me so they all want to meet me.

Oh, I saw my first dungarees today. That made me laugh.

I think I will be going back to see my host family this weekend so that will be nice. I am looking forward to catching up with them. Hopefully we will be able to go shopping at some point. I still haven't had a proper shop in the states yet.

Saturday, 11 August 2007

Bought my books. They cost $413 of the $450 I was given for one semester. Also, that is only taking four subjects which is the minimum that I could have taken. That is insane. However, I wanted to buy them yesterday so I would be all set for Monday. Then I was told that it is best to wait until Monday to see which books you need. So I may have to walk back and return them all which is just awful in this heat. It is a 20 minute walk in this heat with heavy heavy books. Costume History is of course a 600 paged hard back text book. Which I will have to carry along with my two Sociology books and Communication book. Now I am worried.

Had a 'cook out' with the other international students yesterday. There was a boy from Valdosta there who had been hiking in Scotland and so I had a nice little chat with him. It had to be little as my hiking knowledge isn't all that good. So the conversation moved on to Scottish men buying more and more whiskey for the boy.

Then I just hung around the apartment/dorm with some of the people that we have met so far. One boy has Irish roots so I had to tell him to be proud of his freckles and ginger beard but I don't know if I really convinced him.
His father has his own swamp. That is mad.

Have just had a very lazy day today. It is probably for the best as I didn't sleep to well and am going to have to be prepared and awake for Monday. Scary stuff.

Thursday, 9 August 2007


So, my subjects are 3D design, human communication, sociology and costume history. I start on Monday so I shall have to buy my books tomorrow.

Yesterday I had a little chat with some other International students. There is a nice girl from London and a boy from Newcastle so that is nice. I met the other two rotary students attending Valdosta too. One from Argentina and the other from Denmark. They both seem lovely.

I went to a reception at the house of one of the host families who is looking after the boy from Denmark. The house was huge and also rather beautiful. I felt as though I was walking into a Jane Austin story.

I met my trustee along with other host families and members of the Thomasville Rotary Club. It was very nice to speak with everyone and they were all very welcoming.

After some embarrassing photographs were taken we were presented with a cheque for our food and books. As my back card came today i was able to put it into my account straight away which is a relief.

We were also given a lovely spread of food and I tried grits for the first time. I actually put them on my plate as I thought they were mash potato but they had some cheese in them I think. Anyway, they were tasty. We were also given little bags from the host's wife to take away the left over cookies and brownies which I thought was very kind.

I stayed over with my host family after the reception. I hadn't been in contact with them for two days and so it was nice to hear how school was as they have just started the new term.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007


So, I have slept in my dorm overnight and although it was a little cold it is a lovely apartment style dorm. There are four of us living there in total although I have only met one of the girls who also stayed here last night. She is form Columbia and is on the same Rotary programme as myself. I think that we should get along well as she seems really nice.

After dropping off my luggage at the dorm yesterday, my host mum took me to Moe's (a Mexican restaurant, not the pub in Springfield). It was set up like subway and you could pick from all the different meat, veg and beans. I tried black beans for the first time which were pretty tasty. I asked the man what they were like and he 'couldn't really describe them' but did ask me if i knew what the chicken tasted like once I had ordered it. He didn't make me laugh with his customer service, but did have amusing facial hair. You win some you lose some.

Anyway, after Moe's was a huge Walmart shop. As the schools started today, Walmart was packed full of families buying school supplies, and pack lunch food. It was a rather chaotic atmosphere but we were able to pick up everything that was needed for the apartment. I now have a matching shower curtain, toilet brush, tooth brush holder and soap dispenser. Oh yes. I hope that the girl I am sharing with likes flowers and stripes but hey, I got there first so that is what the poor girl just has to live with. It's just a year anyway.

My room mate and I were at an International Students Preregistration Preparation Meeting. That's a mouth full. This was scary at first as there are a lot on mandatory subjects for students here such as math, English, physical education, as well as government and history of Georgia and the USA. Luckily this does not apply to myself as I won't be graduating.
I shall choose the subjects that interest me most and make sure that I am studying 12 hours a week. I shall just have to wait and see what is available for me but fingers crossed there will be a space. I am rather frustrated that most art subjects need prerequisites but it is understandable. I will be able to attend drawing and 3D design however so am planning on splitting them up over the two semesters.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Going to the university to drop of my things and register tomorrow. Very excited about that. I can't wait to see what my dorm looks like. The past few days the Internet hasn't been working.

Today was open house at the middle school so I have had the house to myself while my host family have looked around the school to find all their class rooms. Later today I hope to go shopping as it is tax free weekend. Which means that I will have the right sum of money on hand for a change. Ha, change, I didn't even plan that. Anyway, yesterday I saw the Art Centre's production of Oliver which was fantastic. I think that the pianist did extremely well keeping up with the very young children. As did the children. I would have been so scared on stage at that age. The accents were pretty well done. There were a few people that must have found the cockney accent a bit difficult so attempted a poss English accent which didn't quite work but hey. It was an enjoyable night and that is the main thing. The art centre itself has had a lot of work done to it and it looks great. There is new flooring and some new and improved studios. I will hopefully be back for their 'High School Musical' at the end of the month.

Before the show we went to eat at Ryan's. This was set out like a huge buffet. The deserts were so fantastic. I tried Red Velvet cake for the first time and found it rather tasty. The amount of food coloring is worrying but hey, I liked it.

Oh, found out today that Grooms at weddings have their own cakes. It is usually something about them. The man in the paper had a Valdosta State University cake (in the shape of a large 'V'). I don't think that both cakes are eaten at the wedding as that is a lot of cake considering the Brides traditional wedding cake.

Have driven past some cotton fields. Didn't realise that there are snakes in there but was told if I were to get my picture taken there not to go right in. I have also seen tobacco fields. There are what look like small flat telephone pylons in the fields. Think these are for growth of the fields in some way. The buds on the tobacco plants need to be killed so this may be connected but I wouldn't want to say for sure. If anyone knows please tell me.

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

So things are starting to get a bit more organised now. I have a bank account and have had a quick visit to the university but was unable to leave the car as the rain was ridiculous. Next week I shall be dropping off all of my gear in my nice new dorm room. I shall be staying with other international students in this specif dorm so I am really looking forward to that. I have seen pictures online and will have a living area, kitchen area and a post office all under my roof. I also think that I will be sharing a toilet and bath with just one other person so I am really chuffed about that.

I will also go through the orientation and shall be able to chose my subjects in the middle of next week so that will be exciting. Today I went out for lunch with a lovely girl who lives near by. She will also be attending VSU so it feels good to have a friend before I even start. We went to a little cafe in Moultrie called the 'Three Crazy Bakers'. They didn't seem that crazy but made a nice chicken wrap.

Moultrie is a very pretty picturesque town. All of the houses are on a grand scale and are surrounded by land. One house even had a horse tied up in its front garden. Madness. There are pretty little shops with trinkets and jewelry. No high street shops at all. I think it's lovely.

The university is not too far away from a mall which is pretty dangerous to say the least but we shall just have to wait and see. I have managed to buy a pair of shoes already. They were only $7.50 and will come in useful for just wandering around campus as it is quite large.

Well I am off to read through my bank information.