Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Back to blogging - throw away revision notes!

Here I am! I've missed all of you over the last three weeks. I've been popping in and out of your blogs, sometimes too tired to leave a remark but you have been in my thoughts.

It's been a strange time really. I do not know why I have become so obsessive about this OU degree. But that is indeed what has happened and these last few weeks I have revised as if I had to take the most important exam in the world, instead of it being the third in a series of six (one after every course, except occasionally there will be a course assessment instead) before I get my BA (Hons) Humanities.

I've had flash cards and pages sellotaped to backs of chairs, walls, tables, bathroom, bedroom and car. I've committed to memory dates, quotes, bios and various things that didn't even matter - but I just wanted to stuff them into the neurons in case they would be of use on The Day.

What was the day like? Well, here is a little synopsis of how it went:

I got the train to Paris on Sunday, on a very sticky and close afternoon, checked into the hotel at around 7.30. Had fanciful plans about sitting in the bar, glass of cider in hand and practicing my French on people (halfheartedly revising all the while). What actually happened is that I stayed in my room, ate the sandwiches I'd made that morning (didn't want to chance any hotel food in case I got a tum upset for 'The Day Itself'), got my revision books out and went through them (not the course books but my own notebook), watched a bit of Austin Powers dubbed into French and then went to bed.

Had great sleep (air conditioning was just the job), had breakfast at 6am and then set to with some more revision and a watch of Ali G dubbed into French. (Staines massive is impossible to translate). I went down to the exam room about 9.45 , and 'did' the exam. The questions were more straightforward than I had anticipated and I knew all the information to get me a decent mark - if only I hadn't waffled, repeated myself or been woolly. If only indeed!

So, even though I was the only one out of the four of us sitting the exam who was disturbed by a man in a nearby office talking on the phone and various vehicles turning up outside the window, I had a huge grin on my face at the end of the paper about the fact that this course (Enlightenment to Romantic. 1780 - 1830) was actually over. I then had a great cab ride back to Montparnasse past all my favourite buildings (Louvre, Madeleine, Vendome). Mr FF and the two dogs were waiting for me at our local station and I felt very happy to be home.

I don't even feel too bad today - but I have put a complaint in to the OU about the external noise. This exact same scenario happened last year and I thought the hotel (Ibis at Clichy) would have put us in an internal conference room, goodness knows there were enough of them.

Oh and my last TMA came in at 83% which gave me a lot of encouragement but there is no way I will get anything like that for the exam. They always reckon on about 10% below your average essay mark - if I get 70% for the exam I will be happy.

Now I have to tackle all the things that have gone to pot a bit lately. Weeds in the garden, washing the windows and paintwork, sending our accounts off to the UK accountant (the French end has been sorted), catching up on people and places.

Why is there a picture of a French Fancy? Well, it is actually made out of felt and was custom made for me by Ouissi at British Cream Teas. I'm intending to have it as my avatar and it is currently on the edge of the table; it's a very cheery thing to have around. Fun, frivolous and quite inexpensive - can't say that about much these days. (the prices are only in dollars because Etsy is an American site - Ouissi is actually a Brit and you can pay in real money).


Elizabeth said...

I'm glad that's over.
You certainly deserve SEVERAL cakes.

Dumdad said...

Welcome back!

LadyFi said...

Welcome back! What a day - but I'm so happy to hear you were pleased with it!

When do you get your results?

A Super Dilettante said...

Welcome back FF!! I'm so happy that it's all over! I knew you would do well in your exam! The questions were striaghtforward only because you know your stuff! I'm so pleased for you!! Now, open a bottle of champange and celebrate! You deserve it!

Lola said...

The load you have just lifted off your back makes you fly like a butterfly. I'm happy for you.

Enjoy your freedom and your accomplishment, we are all very proud of you.

Love the felt sweet!

Lola xx

Carol and Chris said...

Awwww, it's so nice to have you back!!!

I'm glad all the studying paid off and that you came out of your exam grinning (I was actually thinking of you yesterday!!). I just know that your going to do brilliantly!!!

Very cool...your own knitted French Fancy :-)

C x

Jennysmith said...

Welcome back, FF, have missed you so much.

don't feel guilty about giving your OU exams your All. If you do something , do it a 100% (quote from Valley of the Dolls)

Look forward to chatting xxxx

Bill Stankus said...

The Paris, train, food, hotel, exam room, familiar sites imagery all seem as part of a movie.

natural attrill said...

What a pretty little cake!
Hope you get a good result in your exam.

Lane said...

Nice to see you back. Glad it all went smoothly (apart from the darn noise).

Love the felt fancy:-)

Frankofile said...

Model exam revision. Shame about the distractions - I'm glad you complained.

Thanks for the BritishCreamTeas hint. I can see some daft presents in there!

Ann said...

Great to have you back FF, sounds as if all went well, never doubted, you had a lot of love with you yesterday.

Relief must be quite wonderful, though I should imagine your brain is in need of refreshments, I agree with ASD, crack open the Champagne ( don't forget my glass ), drink and enjoy.

Actually getting back into your life, the life you had to give up for a while, will be all the rest you need, even weeding the garden will take on some kind of magic.

So happy you are back with us.

Mama said...

Hello FF, so glad you are back and that everything went so well (apart from the noise :-(). Have missed you lots, congrats on your latest marks, 83% that's brilliant or massive as Ali G would say. I went over to British Cream Teas, that was a real blast from the past, I want that Fab lolly haha and your little French fancy looks delicious, well my friend it is good to see you back again, hugs, Kathy.

Reasons to be Cheerful 1,2,3 said...

Well done and welcome back, we missed you. Don't forget to have some well earned rest.

Anonymous said...

So glad the deed is done and you can enjoy the summer now.

Chuffed you're posting again too,


willow said...

Hi there! Welcome back to the bloggyhood.

Steve said...

Best of luck with the results. I should get mine end of June... at the moment I'm just glad to have it all out of the way. The sense of mental freedom is amazing.

Veggie Carrie said...

Welcome back! I remember how annoying it is to have noise in exams (teachers talking during my GCSEs). Glad to hear your exams went well other than that though.
word veri=nosio (nearly noisy!).

Rob-bear said...

Great to have you back! Glad the exam wasn't too terrible (except for the noise). Eagerly anticipating your good news about your marks.

As for the degree, and your feeling about it, is the word "obsessive" or "passionate"?

Larry M. Brow said...

You are a role model to us all! But, "real money?" Makes me think you'd rather pay in doubloons, or sacks of little gold bars.


Contemporary Troubadour said...

Hooray! Congratulations on reaching the finish -- and doing it with enthusiasm.

French Fancy said...

Elizabeth - I deserve cake every day, just for being

Dumdad - merci

Fi - I get the results mid-Aug. Hope I've passed (pass mark is 40%)

ASD - you are such a lovely man

Lola - aw, such kind words

Carol - oh thank you for thinking of me :)

Jenny - missed you

Bill - Paris is so beautiful that it staggers me each time I visit there. The buildings - as you know- are exquisite (well, most of them - we'll ignore the Pompidou Centre)

Penny -thanks sweetie, hope Toby and Laurence are well (and you of course)

Lane - I was the only one bothered with the noise. I must have some sort of syndrome I think

Frankie - isn't the site good. I've just commissioned a felt Marmite jar as a pressie for Mr FF (he's too busy to read the comments so I'm safe to put it)

Ann - kindred spirit if ever there was one

Mama - I knew you would like the felt site - Hope all is well with the family

Reasons - I've gone back to bed for two mornings running now - and not got up till almost 9! (but always get up around 6 to sort out the dogs)

Not Waving - yes, it is good to be back and fairly free and easy

willow - thank you, missed your beautiful blog

Steve- fingers crossed for your result.

Carrie - aw thanks. :)

Rob - hope you are feeling a bit brighter

Larry - ha ha - me a role model?

Contem Troub - thank you, hope your studies are working out well too

Nora Johnson said...

Hi French Fancy!
Great to see you back! So glad all went so well for you (apart from the noise!)

Enjoy a well-deserved rest & see you again soon!

Take care,


justme said...

Welcome back! You can have a lovely summer now after all that hard work. I am glad the exam went well, despite the noise factor.
The French Fancy is quite delightful!

claire p said...

Well done for getting through it. I remember what it's like. One of mine was whilst heavily preagnant!!! Still at least they wouldn't dare fail me.

Fingers, and everything else I can, crossed. Not that you need it.

Blu said...

Hey I have been thinking about how things went for you. YIPPEEEE so pleased for you.

Ann said...

I know FF.

Phil Lowe said...

Hurrah! FF is back! Great reading about the exam experience (sans 'noise' external. Hope you get a good grade.

My posts have missed you. Love Phil xxx

cheshire wife said...

Pleased to hear that the exam appears ro have gone well. Good to have you back in blogland.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

You will have done wonderfully, all that hard work you put in shall pay off in spades, I know...

Love the new French Fancy, and it's a sweet delight to have you back, FF! x

Owen said...

Ah, so nice to see a light in the window and smoke coming out the chimney at FF's place ! Loved your account of all that, good luck for the marks.

Was wondering though at the end, did FF fall asleep in the TGV ? One second she's in Montparnasse, then the next it's the local station, home, dogs jumping up and down ... don't know which way you go, but I love taking the TGV to Rennes, then on to Morlaix, it is so fast, easy, and the speed and scenery whizzing by are a bit hypnotic, very easy to doze off...

Rob-bear said...

With you new avatar, you won't have to worry about fondant icing!

French Fancy said...

Nora - hello to you and the lovely Lola

justme - I can thoroughly recommend the Cream Tea site for something to cheer oneself up in a totally mindless way

claire - I almost threw all my revision notes away and then saw on the OU forum that it is considered bad luck to do so - thus I have not

Blu - it's good to be back

Ann - aw, :)

Phil - and I've missed you too

cheshire wife - I've so missed it here

AWONI - I've got to catch up on all your wonderful posts

Owen - I've never gone to Morlaix on the train - and yes, I did fall asleep (not something I normally do though)

Rob - yuk, fondant icing!

Lulu LaBonne said...

I'm thrilled that your revising has been good. More thrilled still that you're back on the block!!

Cynthia said...

Hi Mrs. French Fancy,

So glad to welcome you back to our world. I hope that the result is cause for celebration. I came over here many times, but there is some computer problem. I finally got to stay on your blog via the M. Firefox server...Explorer 8 was throwing me into cyberspace whenever I tried to enter a comment...and today even when I tried to read your page...oh the frustration!!! I will use this "portal of entry" until the glitch is repaired.

I love the way you use that word "revising" when I expect "reviewing"-it's another delightful reminder of your cultural roots.

Thank you for your kindness over at (OWL) blog. I do love your visits. <3

French Fancy said...

Lulu - and I'm thrilled to see you here again - I've missed being a part of all this

cynthia - what a shame you have glitches with my site. It always seems to happen to certain blogs in my roll as well. I didn't know the USA-ers had review instead of revise. I recall having a big row with a US guy in Thailand once because of how the word 'route' was pronounced.

Clarity said...

Congratulations, I admire people who obsessively study, perhaps because I regret not having the fervour at school.

"Staines massive is impossible to translate" LOL