Exams!? Already!?

“You paid the big bucks to be judgmental.”

This was the advice my criminal law professor gave to us the other day. He was trying to make the point that we need to commit ourselves to our answers in the exam setting (and the point was well made), but it makes me laugh anyway.

In my best judgment I’ve got to say that it seems crazy that exam season is already upon us. And I know a lot of people in my year feel the same – we feel like it’s much too soon for us to already be a semester into law school. That feeling of ‘wow, I’m actually in law school’ has mostly faded, but it still pops up from time to time.

I feel like I’m on top of things though. It’s a weird feeling somewhere between stress and zen that I’ve never really had before. It’s possibly because of the curve – that knowledge that it’s really incredibly hard to fail law school, but also very difficult to do very well.

In addition, NaNoWriMo went well. I hit my 50K and actually finished the last book in a trilogy I started years ago. In fact, there seemed to be less NaNo stress this time. Part of that was probably because I was writing familiar characters and a familiar world, and part of it probably came from the fact that I was able to get ahead in my word count because the first week of NaNo coincided with reading break, but a lot of it also came from the fact that I did not have any papers to write so there was no moment of panic in Week 3 when I realized I had 3 weeks to write 4 papers.

All in all things seem to be going smoothly. Even though I still get the odd shock that I’m actually in law school I mostly just feel like I belong.

  • Kali

Post NaNo Life

Every year after NaNo life goes back to normal. Exams show up and I scramble to do all the readings I pushed aside during November. This year has been no exception, but I feel bad about not blogging. So, here it is – my post NaNo life until today!

December 1st 2012: TGIO!

December 1st 2012: TGIO!

The Guilt Monkeys won our regional challenge!

The Guilt Monkeys won our regional challenge!

My Sonic Screwdriver, a fez, and a paper crown.  Can you guess where this was taken?

My Sonic Screwdriver, a fez, and a paper crown.
Can you guess where this was taken?

Studying for Political Theory. Sigh.

Studying for Political Theory. Sigh.

Textbooks for Next Semester: 1st Haul = $100+

Textbooks for Next Semester: 1st Haul = $100+

Shopping for Gifts for Seniors with Circle K

Shopping for Gifts for Seniors with Circle K

Textbooks for Next Semester: 2nd Haul = Approx $190

Textbooks for Next Semester: 2nd Haul = Approx $190

My New Little Red Ukulele, Moonpie!

My New Little Red Ukulele, Moonpie!

Writing 500 words/day!

Writing 500 words/day!

Yup! I’ve been busy, but my political theory exam was this morning so that’s a load off my shoulders.

Also, you should vote for the Office of Letters and Light for Project for Awesome! They run NaNoWriMo every year and they could really use the money to support their amazing programs. You don’t have to sign up for anything, you just have to CLICK HERE and vote for them. You don’t have to watch the video, but it’s highly entertaining so I highly recommend doing so.

That’s all for now!

– Kali

PS: Don’t forget to go VOTE!

Voters get CAKE!

Voters get CAKE!




Once again I accomplished the NaNoWriMo challenge. I crossed the 50K mark on the 21st and finished the actual story on Monday. It was the sequel to last years NaNo and it was a lot of fun to write despite the torture and death of several characters. Admittedly all the death was off-screen so to speak.

I also started a new novel on Monday because this year I AM GOING TO WRITE POST NANO.

I know, I know – I say that every year, but this year it’s true. I know that to be the case because several other Victoria NaNo-ers/NaNites/WriMos have all decided to set a goal of 500 words a day. It’s not as challenging as the NaNo goal of 1667 words a day which makes ir completely do-able for the long haul. I can write out 500 words in 15 minutes if I’m really on a roll, but it usually taken me more like 30-45 minutes to do so. Putting half an hour aside a day for writing is easy.

In other news the semester is almost over which is great in some ways and sad in others. Monday is that last day of classes though my exams are not over until the 20th. My political theory exam is worth 50% of my mark and that one is absolutely terrifying because it could really make or break my mark. At this point I don’t even care if my grade for that class is particularly good (a first for me), I just want to pass so I never have to take another political theory class again.

I’m definitely going to miss my Arabic class though. Even when I’m sick and tired and do my homework last-minute it brightens up my day. And Nooshi is quite possibly the sweetest teacher I have ever had. I’m thinking about taking part two in the new year, but at the same time I’m also considering taking some time away from it and just trying to make sure I have everything we’ve learned in this class down pat. On the other hand though I worry that I will have great intention to study my Arabic and then just not do it which I do admit to having a tendency to doing. It’s a decision I can make in the new year though since the class doesn’t start until the end of January.

Well, let’s just get through this last essay (for political theory – yuck) and exams and see where the holidays take me.

– Kali

End of Semester & Earthwalk

School has come to a close for the semester. I had my last exam on Tuesday and now I’m just waiting for my grades to come in. I’m not taking summer classes, but Rachel is so we should both be in the city for most of the summer. Unfortunately co-op was a failure. I had a couple of things working against me – I didn’t have the money to leave the city and it was my first term. Theoretically I could keep looking for co-op placements into May, but I’m broke so I can’t wait. On that front though I got a job today. I’ll actually be working with my friend Stephanie so that should be good – and it’s full time which is really helpful. I don’t start until Tuesday, but it gives me time to do any last minute things that need to be done.

Today we had the Earthwalk. It’s an annual event which brings together champions of many causes. Myself and the president of UVic’s Students for a Free Tibet were there, along with many members of the Victoria branch of the Canada Tibet Committee.

This time we started at the Legislature Building and walked up to Centennial Square

Fortunately it was another nice day – I’m hoping the sunny weather is here to stay, but in Victoria it probably won’t. There were a lot of people there – I even ran into one of my teachers from high school.

It started out with a speech and a warm welcome

Her speech was about the salmon and how they are considered sacred. She also shared with us that when she was young she always said she was not going to be one of those environmentalists – it just goes to show you how things can change.

The banner we walked with. I held a Tibetan flag though

This was on the back of a wheelchair. I have no idea where he got it, but isn't it awesome!?

I was down there for about 3.5 hours and it wasn’t even close to wrapping up when I left. However, I was tired and hungry so I headed home. Plus, I didn’t have any sunscreen and I burn super easily.

There was an awesome band playing when we got to Centennial Square - they were just finishing up when I left

Even though I’m tired it’s been a pretty good day. And now that I have the promise of money coming in, I can go to dinner with my friends tomorrow night and actually eat something! Is it sad that that’s exciting? maybe a little…

– Kali

End of Term & NaNo Fever

As the semester draws to a close we feel the inevitable call of the NaNoWriMo song. That’s right, it’s NaNo Fever time. Maybe it’s because March is the November of the semester, or maybe we’re just wishing we could be writing for fun instead of for academia, but no matter what the reason is, it’s there. This year the Victoria region had a social meetup – we met at a local park and eventually made our way downtown where we holed up in the Starbucks in Chapters (a traditional Victoria NaNo write-in spot) and talked.

Victoria’s not a large region by any means, but we’re comfortably middle sized. Unfortunately only 7 of us were there – Rachel, Kali, our friends Ashley and Aaron, an area ML, someone we’ll call ‘The One with the Dolls’, and a guy none of us had ever seen before. Still, even though it was small it was a lot of fun. We both really like our fellow participants so it was cool to see them outside of a NaNo context.

Beacon Hill Park was a nice place to meet, but it’s still pretty brisk here in Victoria even though it’s Spring. Rachel managed to get a few pictures on her phone of the park. Since Kali’s always lived in Victoria she didn’t think to bring a camera because even though the park is pretty, it’s just the park.

Over the Bridge

Ducks in the Pond!

The Cherry Blossoms are Blooming as Usual

In the next little while we get to do a lot of writing… unfortunately it’s for exams. On the plus side though – Camp NaNo starts in June!

Wish us luck!

– Rachel & Kali

First Day of Classes

The first day of classes is always a mix of boring and interesting. It’s boring because it tends to be almost completely devoted to going over the syllabus, but it’s interesting because it’s a whole host of new classes and often new professors.

Today I had the first of 3 of my 4 second semester classes – I won’t have my first History of the Modern Middle East class until tomorrow, but I can wait. So far my classes seem pretty interesting.

My International Relations class is with one of my friends from political science and is being taught by the same professor we both had last semester for our EU politics class. We both really like her so this is a plus. Another of my friends is also in the class, she was considering dropping it, but has decided to stick it out for at least a couple of weeks to give it a chance. Like most introductory courses it seems like it will probably have it’s boring parts, but you have to understand the boring basics before you can move onto the interesting stuff. The paper for that class is on the shorter side – only 2000-2500 words, but that’s a-ok with me. I don’t know what I’m going to write on yet, but she said she’ll give us sample topics later on.

The next class I had today was my Greek and Roman Mythology class (or as our prof calls it, Classical Mythology). The class was massive (it has over 200 people in it). Our professor seems like she’s pretty funny. Her expertise falls into the Greek mythology side of things whereas she said most of the profs in the department who teach the class are more interested in the Roman mythology side. I don’t really know which one I prefer so I don’t mind either way. The thing that, to me, stood out, was the fact that the class has no final exam. It has 4 in class quizzes worth 17% each and an in class essay worth 32%. It seems odd to not have a final exam, but can’t say I’m heartbroken. One thing I’m not particularly pleased with is the fact that out textbook is STILL NOT HERE. Our prof seems pretty frustrated with this too – apparently they’re actually making a new textbook for us, a custom edition just for our university/her class, but it’s not here yet. Fortunately they sent her the PDF of chapter one so she just uploaded that since we need to read it by for our Friday class.

My third and final class of the day was the class that I’ve taken to calling History of Religion in Europe. It has a longer name, but I’m definitely not going to write it out all the time. Our prof for that class is actually a political science AND history prof (which explains why we’re reading Hannah Arendt). I was warned that he talk really loud and the people who warned me were not wrong. He is a very loud and very emphatic speaker. He’s obviously really passionate about his subject (and it does sound interesting), but I have to say I’m glad I only have to listen to him for 50 minutes at a time. I was in for another shock when I found out that this class is also without a final exam. We do have a paper worth 45% of our mark though (which makes me really nervous). The paper is also longer than any other one I’ve written so far as it’s supposed to be 3750-4500 words. At the very least that’s 1000 words longer than any paper I’ve ever written. Yikes!

I also have someone to sit with in all of my classes except my Classical Mythology one. To be honest I’ll be surprised if I make friends with someone to sit with in that one just because it’s such a large class. You would think that would make it easier to make friends, but it doesn’t seem to (at least for me anyways). I was surprised to see someone I recognized in my History of Religion in Europe class. I have no idea where I’ve seen her before, but apparently we both do NaNo, which is awesome. I would say I probably met her there, but she wasn’t at any of the events this year. Oh well, maybe she was in one of my larger classes.

Despite my worries about my History of Religion in Europe class I’m excited for what this new semester will bring. I hope all of you are having a new year as good as mine has been so far.


Winter Break

Wow, it’s certainly been a hectic week or so. All my exams are over now and I’m just awaiting results to come in. I’ve gotten my mark for my EU class and I got an A. I’m really happy about that. I even think my theory exam went alright, but I haven’t gotten my mark for that class yet. I’m expecting it any time now though.

My dress for the Yule Ball arrived from ModCloth. It’s really pretty and I’m so excited for Yule Ball now (not that I wasn’t before). I think I’m more excited for that than for Christmas oddly enough.

Fortunately for me Rachel’s aunt is letting us stay with her when we’re in Vancouver so that takes some of the cost out of the trip. Currently the plan is to go over on the Thursday and come home on the Friday, but if Rachel isn’t working it’s been suggested that we go over on the Wednesday and spend some time in the city. You certainly won’t hear me complaining, I love cities. Unfortunately my job ends after boxing day which means I’ll be on the job hunt… again. On the plus side though, that means I don’t have to worry about taking the time off for the ball.

I really do hate job hunting though so that’s going to be a pain. Plus it will be after Christmas so nobody will be hiring. I guess I’ll just have to keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best. At least I’ll have plenty of time to study until I find a job (if I manage to).

It’s also weird to think that two weeks today (at this time actually) I’ll be sitting in a classroom as the first class of my second semester (International Relations) will just be starting. I’m really excited though. Plus, now that I’ve gotten all my student loan stuff sorted out I have a load off my shoulders.

Now I just need to finish buying Christmas presents and finish buying textbooks. I think with Christmas with Rachel and attending the Yule Ball this is going to be the best winter break ever!

– Kali