Thursday, March 31, 2005

Mom and Dad

Hi mom and Dad-

This one is dedicated to you.

I am safe and sound, and settling in to my house here. I have a tiny room but it's in a house that feels like a home. So I have somewhere cozy to come home to each night. I have 3 roommates. Marta, Sarah, and Dan. The house is in a neighborhood called Holyport and is about 2 miles outside the town of Maidenhead. Bray, which is the tiny village, or neighborhood really, in which The Fat Duck is located, is just down the road. It's a picturesque British country village. I jogged down there this morning to look around. I said hi to the sheep as I shuffled past them and quacked at the ducks. I am glad this restaurant isn't in London. I much prefer this out of the way little town to the hustle and bustle of a large city.

The weather is much as Seattle is on it's greyest of days. There is a fine mist that hangs in the air and the clouds are unchanging. It's not too cold and not too wet. Just grey really. I have been told to expect April showers and a nicer May.

I'll be braving the grocery store tonight. I wandered in and out of a few yesterday in Maidenhead while I waited for my "flatmates" to get off of work and come home to let me in. Waitrose was by far the nicest, and the prices put whole foods in close second. I was told that all my predecessors, the other "Fatduckers", lived off pot noodles which are just cup-o-noodles.

There are quite a few American installments here like Subway, Burgerking, and many little fast food chains which is to be expected. But what surprised me was Curves for Women downtown. Libby will be amused by the store called Arty Farty that provides paint your own pottery services.

I am still dragging on a jet lagged schedule. I woke up at 10 last night, passed the time until at 7 this morning I put on my running shoes and went for a jog. After a nice hot bath I was finally ready for bed at 9 this morning.

As for the Digi-cam, Dad, it's an Olympus Stylus 410. It's allweather, quite compact, and came with the rechargable battery. Unfortunately I purchased the incorrect converter, a problem I will remedy this weekend. Not all is lost as the converter I did buy will work in Germany. My mistake was in thinking that the description "fits in all European sockets" included the UK. Not as such. I also packed along a larger memory card. I spent much of last night installing the software for the camera onto the computer. I even downloaded a patch to upgrade the software so it would have file-sharing capabilities. Now I just have to learn how to use it. It has 4.2 mega-pixels, a 3 x optical zoom, and a 8 x digital zoom. The user interface is fairly intuitive and I haven't had to consult the instruction manual yet.

As for a phone, Mom, there is a house phone but for what ever reason phones do what they do, it isn't working right now. Dan said that he has already called the phone company and they should have the problem fixed soon. Probably not soon enough for your liking, but I promise a call as soon as I am capable. Sorry I didn't call you on Monday, the service on my phone had been shut off on Saturday.

I love you Mom and Dad.

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