"Rebecca, why don't you update your blog more often?"
"Because, as far as I can tell, I am no longer 'abroad' and so keeping the blog is pointless. What would I write?"
"Oh, I don't know. Just update it."
And so, after having had this conversation at least once a day since my return, I am now getting around to updating. I have been home for a little over a month.
As I mentioned earlier, I went to my friend Elysa's graduation party in St. Mary's Co. On the way down, I picked up Nolly, Becky, and Karen from various locations in Maryland. All of us were at Oxford together. I had worried that seeing them again would be a bit awkward after so long a time away. However, the five or so months that had passed since we last saw each other made no difference. Indeed, it felt as if I had just seen them the day before. It was wonderful. As was the whole trip in general. It was just the thing that I needed in order to reintigrate myself into the US culture. To allow me to merge the two parts of my life into one again. And yet, it was strange to see Brad, Nolly, and Becky in a place other than Oxford (and in So. MD of all places!)
The week passed in a haze of ice luging, pina coladas, boating, sunning, and eating. On the final day, Elysa and I had our long-awaited grad school day (which we had arranged for ourselves). Holed up in St. Mary's career center for eight hours, we poured over books on grad school admissions, financial aid, CVs, and personal statements. By the end, we were considerably more knowledgable about the entire process than we had been, but a bit more worried about our prospects of getting in at all. It is hard to remain motivated and upbeat when your proposed course only accepts 19 students a year. We are having another grad school day in late July/early August, by which time I hope to have a personal statement done and CV finalized.
In other news on the grad school front, I've removed Oxford Brookes from my list and so am down to six schools (Oxford, Cambridge, LSE, St. Andrews, Edinburgh, King's) and seven programs (I'm a being a bit risky in applying to the MSc Global Governance and the MPhil IR at Oxford, but I have good reasons for doing so and can properly defend my course of action). I've also got two recomendees, which is such a relief since now I only really need one more (but probably will get two). I was so nervous that I wouldn't be able to get anyone that I really just thought about giving it all up. (Don't worry: I don't give up that easily.)
I've started my internship at the State Department and turned 21. The two things are not related, and more will follow on each at a later date.