First, I found Oxford University. I found it 4 times in fact, because I kept missing the damn turn on the roundabout.
Recently, Jen took her first ever trip outside the United States. Please enjoy Part Two of this multi-part series chronicling her tale abroad, along with the requisite musings. Part One can be found here.
Note: The internet is full of posts by smart, photogenic people taking meticulously staged selfies at famous landmarks, so this travelogue is restricted to actual personal thoughts, including things I found fascinating and/or hilarious. This entry contains baby snatching, naked arthouse mannequins, and a brief moment of uncontrollable public sobbing. Off we go!
Thursday I bid adieu to London and my Airbnb, and headed to Marylebone train station. After walking probably 30 miles the previous few days, I was looking forward to a train ride.
What I learned in middle school was that a small group of right-minded revolutionaries overthrew the Hawaiian monarchy to bring democracy to a nation mired in outmoded traditions. My textbook told only one side of the story.
I will make no bones about it: if you feel uncomfortable about bisexual male romance, and feel disturbed seeing adoration and longing played out in a messy, direct, and exploratory way, this movie is not for you. Props to director Luca Guadagnino, though, for not shying away from any part of it, not the messiness, nor the aching emotions of longing, loss, and culmination, nor the delicate difficulty of filming experience and inexperience in a way that will undoubtedly freak some people out.
What really to got me, reading M Train, was the unreliability of the narrator. Smith writes about loneliness and being alone, but in a small paragraph also implies that her life doesn’t let her be alone at all, and that loneliness might even be something she has to fight for. There’s a small paragraph embedded in thousands of words of solitary cafe-sitting that describes a frenetic journeying around the world — but the book lingers over the lonely times. As the dream cowpoke says to her in the very first line of Smith’s book, “It’s not so easy writing about nothing.”