Assignment numero 6 (and 7)

So I thought I wasn’t going to manage this one. What with the new job and everything, stuff was getting crazy-I ended up having to ask for an extension. I was just lucky that I had my little holiday in Wales, I could spend the rainy afternoons typing away. Bizarrely enough, I ended up getting my highest mark so far! Of course, the moment I submitted my Burial at Thebes assignment, I started panicking about the next one, lets just say thank god for 4 day weekends! I went on a bit of a manic-hermit-lady bender and wrote it all in one go. So I submitted it yesterday, and I’m just so glad to have it out of the way!! All I have left to do until the end of my first year with the Open University is one more assignment, and then one exam. I think that’s quite a manageable amount really, and to be honest, I’ll probably be quite sad to see it all end! Anyhow, I should probably get to work about now, so more later!

The Death of Ivan Ilyich

So I went to Wales last week, and, divvy that I am, I decided to take the coach. So obviously I needed something to keep me occupied on the 10 hour journey (*groan*). I picked The Death of Ivan Ilyich and Other Stories, by Leo Tolstoy. And it just so happens that this is another of my 1001 books to read before I die. All of the stories in the book are quite short, and yet they all seem to make some very broad claims about the state of society and the like. I enjoyed it, despite all the melancholy. The Death of Ivan Ilyich was probably my least favourite of the stories, all of the characters were quite unsympathetic. As a reader, I really wanted to be able to feel for the man who was dying such a long, painful death, but he was such a sod, I really couldn’t muster up any feeling for him. There were a couple of others, such as The Raid, which didn’t really appeal to me as it seemed like a chapter of a book rather than a complete story in itself. And I’m not really a war girl. Having said this, even when the subject matter was not too great, Tolstoy has a way of making things very, very readable. My favourite of all the short stories was The Forged Coupon, which also happens to be the longest of the bunch. It is basically a story showing how committing one small crime, such as forging a coupon, can have grave consequences to those around you, causing a sort of snowball effect. In this case a forged coupon became horse stealing, and horse stealing became mass murder. This is most definitely the one I would recommend… it just so happens that this is also the least depressing story of the book…. As I’ve said before, I’m a girl who loves a happy ending!

So I’m keeping it short tonight, I have an early morning. I promise to try and be a much more faithful blogger in the future, so expect more soon!

Juggling

So it appears that I have survived the first week of having a full time job! It’s a little odd being out of the house eight hours a day… especially as this is the time I would usually have for my OU stuff. I’ve discovered that juggling time is trickier than juggling skittles (not that I can do that either…), and I think this has filled me with a new respect for those who are studying with the OU while working and taking care of a family. It’s stressful!

For the first time, I’ve had to ask for an extension for an assignment. Thankfully my tutor is very understanding. But I’m still a little annoyed with myself, I really thought I’d be able to keep up… I’m sure it won’t become a pattern, but it still worries me. Sob, hic, I think I need a biscuit…

On a slightly happier note, I totally KICKED ASS on my “Hard Times” assignment (A150). I was well chuffed, especially as I thought I hadn’t done very well (I think we all remember my initial reaction to reading that flaming book…).

So on Sunday I’m going to Wales. I may or may not have internet there, so there’s a chance I’ll disappear from blogland for a while. That should give you a nice rest from all my little rants! Bye for now.

P.S. I fully intend to do a video blog at some point, my only excuse is that I’ve had about two weeks of bad hair days 🙂

On The Road

Last year for my birthday, I got the most amazing book I’ve ever seen… “1001 books to read before you die”. And I made myself a little promise that I’d try to read as many as possible before I do. So I randomly flipped through the pages, and I landed on “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac. It just so happens that I had a copy of it on my shelf, so for a week it became my bus book. Shouldn’t have bothered.

After reading the introduction, you would think it was the greatest thing since sliced bread … but to be honest it was a bit naff. It wasn’t difficult to read, it was just a bit unpleasant. It’s exactly how I imagine the inside of a man’s head to be… not a pretty sight! It’s basically about this guy who’s a bit past his best, but just wants to roam around the country with his mates, not doing much of anything except getting stoned and getting laid.

One aspect that got right on my wick was the slang. There were sections that I’d need a decoder ring to read… for example “harrumph! egad! kaff! kaff! Major Hoople, sir,” WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?!

To be completely honest, I don’t really have much else to say about this particular book… I should probably just have read “Gone with the Wind” again! On the bright side, I have another page of “1001 books…” to tick off! Hopefully I’ll enjoy the other 1000 a bit more!