Tomorrow we depart in our coach for Heathrow. Lauren Lewis said, “Boo hoo” at lunch, and that summed it up for many. We have had a great time here. The desserts have never failed to entertain, the new coffee machine has been satisfactory, and the manor has been a daily delight. Sue and Eric and all their students will certainly have as fabulous a time as we have.
Here is one last group picture, taken outside the Manor immediately following the final presentations. The beautiful sunny weather today has put everyone in a happy mood.
We made videos of the students’ final presentations and posted them on the Video tab. Take a look, as they are very good!
Here at the manor, we enjoy three, for some, two, meals a day in the Refectory. It is a nice central meeting place, and eating and chatting together everyday creates a comfortable sense of community. In past years, the coffee has been questionable, but there is a nice new coffee machine that makes strong coffee, so Life is Good. There were tacos last night, and it seems the tacos met with great approval.
Another activity that is quite pleasant is out Tea and Chat sessions. In the first week of our stay at Harlaxton, we checked in with how everybody was doing in our little cottage, and we had tea and biscuits. This week we had our final Tea and Chat session, and we all talked about how four weeks of study and travel have changed us. Some said they had more patience with uncertainty, some said they had more confidence to travel by themselves. One Young Scholar said the realized how big the world is and how much he doesn’t know about it. Socrates would be proud. If you want to read more about their insights, visit the individual blogs and look for Experiential Blog 8.
Here is a photo of two of our scholars having tea and biscuits at the cottage:
We are all back our home in the Harlaxton Manor (it really does have the comfortable feeling of home at this point) for the final week of the program. We have a full week of classes and discussion for the final readings, along with the last reading responses and experiential blog postings. The students are now beginning to prepare their final presentations, thinking about how to summarize and connect all they have learned during the program. Students in the German cultural heritage course will be working on defining and illustrating their understanding of “Empire,” while students in the English literature course will be doing the same for “Literary Gothic.” Work in seminar today focused on arriving at a definition with their working partners, as well as constructing an argument, counter argument and response, and summary for their definition. We’re looking forward to the presentations in a couple days.
Last week, the class was in London to view Queen Charlotte’s palace in Kew Gardens, have a grand time at the Tower of London and the National Portrait Gallery learning about Empire, and then having an hilarious lecture on Freud by Stefan at the London Freud Museum. Here is our merry band of young scholars at the Tower of London, in front of the Toweer Bridge, and in the ultimate recovery pose after all that intensive learning.
Now we are preparing for our final week at the manor. Today students are reading, doing laundry, and gathering their wits for the final exam this Friday. These exams will be Ignite presentations that define Empire and the Gothic. We will post these essays on the personal blogs. Check back in on Friday on your favorite student’s blog for a great presentation.
Everyone has returned from the first free weekend excursions. Some went to Amsterdam, others spent the time in Edinburgh. Today is catch up on assignments, class meetings exploring Freud and Schnitzler, and blogging. Everyone needs to do laundry and pack, and others hope to have time to take the blue bell nature walk. Tomorrow morning we leave the manor at 8:00 a.m. for three days of site visits in London, followed immediately by the second free weekend. The destinations are more diverse for this weekend: Berlin, Dublin, Paris, and the Peak District. There will be no wifi at our accommodations, so look for the next posting Monday, May 27.
In the photo below, you will need to search for the early morning visitor we had to the garden outside our cottage. Look for the red plumage of the male pheasant. The female’s body can also be seen, but it is more hidden.