My last post was in December, and in three days it'll be March. As I was very gung-ho for writing down my adventures every two weeks, I apologize for the extended absence. A lot of things have been happening. I was even supposed to do an author piece this past weekend, which I didn't even remember until a few minutes ago, after I'd spent the morning emailing medical archives, plotting group projects that seem nigh near impossible to actually do, and climbing twisting stairs in search of a freezing cold attic of a piano practice room.
Allow me to fill you in on what's gotten on since December. I got to go home for two weeks, which was brilliant and mainly consisted of me watching television on the couch, singing and dancing in the kitchen, and playing in the snow.
In January, I got to see light installations all over London for the Lumiere Festival and had tequila for the first time. It was really good.
February has lasted approximately 2.85 seconds but comprises 285,000 events and tasks. I'm currently working on a group project where we have fifty-three human bones with a cataloging system that no one can identify. It probably predates the Blitz so whatever new numbering system we'd need has most likely been destroyed. I've poured over handwritten medical records from the 1800s and even found a case of a little girl being born with the same benign tumor I was (spoiler: the doctors almost killed her with too much chloroform but she was strong and survived the procedure of removing her tailbone!).
This month I also started my work placement at the House of Illustration in King's Cross (see photo to your right and up). The museum is only four years old and hosts exhibitions on illustrators from all over the world--so far I've worked on devising a new way for them to get visitor feedback, am planning a travelling exhibition on Quentin Blake book covers, and even helped a tiny tiny bit with their newest exhibition that just opening last week, Made in North Korea: Everyday Graphics from the DPRK. It displays hand-painted propaganda posters that encourage a helpful and happy workforce, along with militaristic comic books, language pamphlets, tourist maps, stamps, post cards; everything right down to salt and sugar packets from Pyongyang. Put simply, it's something very humanizing and beautiful that would never be allowed to be put on in my home country, and I'm eternally grateful that it's something I not only get to visit, but something I could help set up.
I work there all day twice a week, and though it's tiring there's always something exciting going on. Besides work placement, my flatmates and I celebrated Pancake Day (aka Shrove Tuesday) by bopping down to Soho and eating in a matchbox-sized diner that blared 80's music; I woke up at 6AM to attend Ash Wednesday service at Saint Paul's and nearly cried at the grandeur, then I went to Brighton with my flat and spent hours squinting at the sun while wearing nothing but a tee-shirt and jeans in order to soak up as many vitamins as I could. I also got to experience my first Chinese New Year festivities. This included watching a lion dance that was apparently not up to Hong Kong standards (my flatmate's opinion!) but heavily dazzled me nonetheless, laughing at street graffiti and eating bento and fried squid until we almost threw up at Eat Tokyo and not Chinese food because Chinatown was far too bursting. I also hosted an Olympics opening ceremony party where we all cheered for each other's home country, which was incredibly fun. On top of this, I was told two days ago that my Spanish sounds like I'm from Spain and not Latin America, which was what I was taught, and I don't understand how this could be.
My university is also currently on strike this week, so I had to talk my way into getting into the Institute of Archaeology just to use the printer. At the end of this term I'll be able to get a part-time (or partly part-time??) job so I won't be just sucking money out of my savings account. I also need a hair cut, which means I need to decide whether I want to grow my hair out or buzz it back to an undercut.
I'm very very tired, but I'm also having a lot of fun.
PS- as for author stuff, I have a novel coming out this year (hopefully) in the fall, about mouse spirits and college students!
Official website of Rachael Kosinski, 23.