Saturday, January 2, 2010

Keep your eyes peeled


Another day. Another adventure.

This morning we woke up a bit earlier then usual, because we're all trying to get into some sort of schedule since classes start on Monday and our sleeping-in days are officially over!

Steven, Loralie, the baby, and I all headed into town. There was some confusion as to if we were all coming back together, since Loralie had a hair appointment later on in the day, so we all just bought one-way bus tickets into town.

Minor rabbit trail: I will not be getting my hair cut while I'm here. I asked how much it would cost and Loralie informed me that it was between 30-60 pounds ($60-$120). thank-you....

Okay, so we get off the bus and we hit Debenhams, which is a giant popular department store. We split up and met each other down at the ground level after an hour or so. We hit Blacks, an outdoors store, because we all still need a few more things for our hiking trip to Wales. Then our last stop was Sainsbury, the small grocery store. I was informed on the bus into town that I was on dinner duty that night, so I had to come up with something to make so we could buy the stuff we needed. I decided on Tortilla Stacks, a favorite of mine that my mom makes, and so we picked up a few things from the store.

At this point, we split up. Loralie took the bus to her hair appointment, Steven and Dalia went home, and I stayed in town to look for a birthday gift for my father.

I got scared.. for two reasons..

The first reason is this: See that pretty building in the picture? Yeah, well I completely missed it. Now maybe it's because I was trying to navigate my way through mobs of people and find a post office (Oh dad, you have a package coming in the mail ;) ), but when I stepped out of the post office and looked around, I was appalled that I could miss such beauty that was sitting there the entire time I was walking up and down that street! I know that probably just sounds silly, but if I've only been here two weeks and I'm already taking for granted, or completely missing out, on all the amazing stuff to see here, then I don't even want to know whats going to happen next!! (Okay, I'll cool down the drama now..)

Here is the second reason I was scared:(I'll tell it in story form) After the post office and snapping a picture of the building, which I think is St. Marys Church, but I could be totally making that up, I headed for the bus stop. Finally finding one, I checked the time to see when the next bus should be due. Three minutes. Wonderful. I looked up the road I had just come down and saw the bus I needed had a stop there too, but it was headed to my stop next. A family had joined me under the bus stop, so I just assumed they were needing the same bus as me. So, I watch the bus come down the street, briefly stop at the bus stop I was standing at (well it was really more like a rolling stop, an ILLEGAL rolling stop might i add), and then speed off again only to leave me with my out stretched hand, standing at the bus stop with the family just looking at me like I was stupid. I felt stupid. APPARENTLY I wasn't aggressive enough and you have to almost dance in the street with your arms waving wildly for the bus driver to realize you want on the bus! Well, I couldn't' stand in my stupidity any longer, so I walked back up the street I had just come down and decided to wait at the first bus stop instead. I got on that bus perfectly fine, and asked for a one-way to Dean Court. I found a seat and sat down appreciatively. (Is that a word?)

The bus finally starts moving and I see familiar sights start zooming passed. We stop at a few more stops to pick up some stragglers, and we continue on. I start to think that my stop most be coming up soon. I look out my window and see the "Pinnocks Way" sign we just passed. I think to myself, "Okay? So, thats where I live and the bus driver didn't stop. Maybe he drops people off then turns around. I'll just sit and wait to see whats going to happen." We pass a lot of trees, the drive seems kind of long, I see a sign for Eynsham, a town just outside of Botley. I think, "Okay, this is strange, we're in a whole new town. Well, the bus driver has to get back, so surely he is going to turn around after this town." We keep driving. we pass more trees. I see a dead sheep in some sheep field. I'm getting kind of tired of the kid behind me who is pulling my hair and singing really loud, and I see a sign for "Witney", another town even farther from Oxford. I send Steven a text, "I think I'm on a bus back to America."
He calls me, "Whats up?"
"Well, I told the bus driver I needed to go to Dean Court and somehow I've ended up in Witney."
After trying to suppress a laugh, "Did you push the stop button when you passed Dean Court?"
" Was I supposed to? What should I do now?"
"Ha Ha yes you were supposed to! Go up and talk to the bus driver and ask him what you should do. Maybe you can stay on the same bus and he will drop you off when he goes back."

If you know me at all, I hate asking people I don't know questions, but more then that, I just wanted to get home. So reluctantly, at the next stop, I went up to the bus driver. Sheepishly (Ha ha..dead sheep--sheepishly...anyway) went up to him and told him that I "forgot" to push the stop button so I missed my stop and I need to get back to Dean Court. He tells me I need to get out of the bus, go across the street, and wait at, yet again, ANOTHER bus stop for a bus going in the opposite direction. So I do.. I get off the bus in Witney, a town I've been in only once and that was with someone who knew their way around, cross the street, and wait for the bus to come. IT CAME HALLELUJAH!! I get on, pay again, and ask for "a one-way to Dean court, please." I keep my eyes PEEEEELED, even though the annoying sun is burning my corneas. The ride home seems longer then ever, but I pass the dead sheep, so I know I'm now getting closer, finally we get out of Eynsham and I see my stop. I vigorously push that STOP button and I get off the bus. I've never said thank you to a bus driver with as much sincerity as I did then as I got off that bus.
I almost knelt down and kissed the sidewalk, but I refrained. I walk a little ways to Pinnock Way. I walk into my house and just look at Steven as he sits there and shakes his head in mockery. Yeah..epic. :)

The moral of those two stories is KEEP YOUR EYES PEELED. You never know what you could be missing. Maybe its home, maybe its just something beautiful.

The moral of my next story could be the same though, but I'll just tell you the story and let you decide.

I walk upstairs, drop off a load (of bags i was carrying, not poop) and head downstairs. Steven says, "If you're not too afraid to go out again, Paul and Ruth are coming in about fifteen minutes and we're all going to walk to The Fishes." In thirteen minutes, the other Hettlers arrived. We all got coated up ( yet again, have I coined a new phrase?) and headed outside towards The Fishes. We walked for a LONG time, a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time. I was thinking to myself, "Hopefully this place is off the chizzzzzaaaaaan because with all this walking I'm doing, it has to be worth it. :) We made it to The Fishes with was a restaurant/pub/cafe sort of thing. It had a wonderful atmosphere, delightful smells, and unexpected company! As we were walking in, we saw Mary Hippsley, a faculty of the KBC, and the Newman family. Michael Newman is going to be our lecturer for the first week we're back at KBC, so it was awesome to get to meet him and his family and get to talk to him before things get too serious in the classroom. We chatted for awhile and I enjoyed the best Hot Chocolate I have ever had in my life. No joke. Do i look like the kind of girl who would joke about hot chocolate? We finished off our drinks, said our goodbyes, and started our long trek back home.

The three girls, Ruth, Loralie, and I, are walking in front, forming some sort of defensive front line. Steven and Paul are pushing the two strollers a couple feet behind us. The girls and I are just chattering away, and suddenly I hear from behind me, "Excuse me". Out of just some sort of reaction, I suddenly kind of step to the right, only to be clobbered from behind by some running jock. I kinda chuckle, as does he, and step to the left, as does he. So we again, bump into each other. I say "I'm sorry" and step again to the right. As. Does. He. "Enough's enough" he thinks to himself I'm sure, because he grabs my shoulders from behind, literally picks me up, moves me to the left, sets me down, and continues running on his merry little way. I probably should've yelled "I'm sorry" one more time, but I couldn't' stop laughing from sheer embarrassment.

Now, I'm going to say in my defense, how the heck was I supposed to know what side to move to??

Mr. Running Man, next time you say excuse me could you please specify which direction you're coming from maybe? Or better yet, you could announce "Coming at your right" or something informative like that? With all due respect. Thank-you kind Sir. Yours Truly, the girls who awkwardly danced with you.

Well, I think that's my exciting news for the day. We made it home. I cooked dinner. We enjoyed our last meal as just the three of us since the rest of our housemates come back from break tomorrow. We played some cards and enjoyed each others company. Now its time for bed.

Hope you enjoyed a little peek into my day.
Love you all!
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  1. I do not think that the moral of your two stories was the same :) We all miss you very much!!!! I still can't believe that you are in ENGLAND! It is crazy to me. Love you!!!

  2. Ha..well abigail, if I would've kept my eyes peeled and aware of my surroundings, maybe i would've noticed the running man and we woudln't have collided..dontcha think?

  3. LOL doesn't EVEN begin to cover it! I love hearing your stories, but I wish I could see you telling them in your full arms swinging, body leaping Aeriole kind of story telling way, but this will have to do! A few questions, 1.How did you figure out that you had to be more demostravtive when waving a bus down? Did you see it done or did the nice family tell you? 2. Dad and I thought it was quite funny that when yo usaw that you were headed in the wrong direction, you first texted someone instead of asking the person DRiVING you!!!! But, like I said, it's funny that GOd is putting you in situations where you are having to get past that. It reminds me of when I was in Mexico and had to learn the subway and bus routes, and even though I spoke the language, I was terrified of getting on the wrong one, b/c who knows who I would then figure out how to get home, and all that was before cell phones :) As for the jogger, the only thing I can say is "Only You!" Well, enjoy your last day off and best wishes on the start of your classes, you'll do great! PS Have you been to Dave and Kris' church yet? Love you, Mom

  4. Hahahahahahaha! I LOVE your stories, A! Between you and E, you two have enough "adventures" in life to be able to share with a person who has no life at all. :) That cracks me up that you got run into by that runner man and that he actually picked you up to move you out of his way. Hahahaha! NICE! It's also super hilarious that you ended up taking the bus ride of your life. :) Your blog is awesome. Again, I LOVE your stories. Keep 'em comin! Love you and miss you.

  5. Ha..onlyme.. is tat a good thing i wonder? Lets see..i've just seen ppl do the "wave the bus down thing" and so I've seen it done pretty wildly, but I thought mine would suffice, obviously it didnt..
    I haven't been to basingstoke yet since its break.and today im just going to the college's church, but next week i'm going! which i'm super excited about. Love you!

  6. Aeriole, you are too funny! I can just picture you sitting on the bus trying to keep your cool but realizing that you're getting farther and farther away from home! Reminds me of the time I got lost in Seoul, not fun! I love that you give such detailed blogs, they're so much fun to read! Love ya, Sarah

  7. haha Aeriole, that is so funny, and entertaining! I love how you "talk" to buildings, people, etc. that will never know you are talking to them on here. CRACKS me up! Glad you are safe now!