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About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

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Posts Tagged “travel”

Spring Break Photo Montage

My spring break in photos:

My friend’s grandmother’s cat in Columbus, OH. This cat was the softest, friendliest animal you could hope to meet.

Huuuuuge plane from Dallas to Tulsa. Forty minutes in the air, and I’m in an airplane larger than the one I rode when I went from Dulles to Ireland. It was rather fun.

Courtyard Marriot hotel in downtown Tulsa — I love the vaguely Asian wallpaper. (I’m linking to them because they were extremely nice, not because they put me up to it.)

Touring Tulsa on foot the night before an audition.

Touring Tulsa on foot the afternoon after an audition. The weather was gorgeous, both in Tulsa, at home, and now back at Butler.

Fancy Crowne Plaza in which United Airlines stuck me after my flight was cancelled and I was stranded in O’Hare airport on my way home.

What I did when I finally arrived home: Hung out with my family and Marcel the Shell.

Off to Kansas City! (i.e. Off to Missouri)

I think it is the most bizarre thing that Kansas City is partly in Missouri.

I’m in the airport, waiting to take off for an audition at Kansas City Ballet. This is the farthest I’ve ever traveled for an audition; so far they’ve all been in Chicago or Louisville. I’ve been anxious about the traveling more than the audition itself — last night I dreamed that I couldn’t get from the hotel to the ballet in time and I missed the registration slot by two minutes and they wouldn’t let me audition and gave me a written test instead. That was my dream.

I suppose this will be good practice for spring break, when I’ll be running around all sorts of places. Auditioning plus Coppélia will make for a busy spring!

(And it is spring now — I didn’t have to wear my huge winter ski jacket at all this winter, and I am extremely happy.)

What did NOT happen. (Photo is from my freshman winter.)

Louisville is much closer to Butler than Chicago is

And the above fact made my Sunday so much more pleasant. Two hours in the car in light traffic during the day seems like nothing compared to three hours in the car in crazy traffic at night. In the fog.

I auditioned for Louisville Ballet this past Sunday. This was my first real, ballet company audition, since the ones I did previously turned out to be more school-based. It actually went better than I expected. I was nervous until we started dancing, probably because we arrived early and had a fairly long time to warm up (though the hall was so crowded, there wasn’t overmuch space).

The artistic director gave a little speech before barre began, introducing everyone and basically telling us not to freak, which was nice of him. I enjoyed the class itself, taught by the ballet master. I even made a friend: I helped her with a barre combination, and she complimented my leotard. I love dancer camaraderie.

Barre was rather crowded — there were loads of people in the audition, but they broke the center work into smaller groups. I didn’t expect there would be so much standing around, but the studio was warm and sunny, and there were about a million people from Butler at the audition, so I enjoyed watching everyone dance. I do wish we had switched lines in for the center work, but the audition was otherwise much as I expected.

The consensus? Maybe finding a job won’t be as stressful as I’ve made it out to be. After all, the application process simply consists of doing what I love to do. Even my audition video, the making of which seemed one of the most arduous pieces of the pie, is coming together. Wish us all luck!

Headshot, courtesy of the incredible Dale Dong.

The First Audition

It was a long drive home from Chicago through the blinding mist, odd lightening flashes, and occasional splatterings of rain. This Sunday marked the first of what I intend to be many auditions. Yes — the job search begins.

I went to the Hubbard Street Dance Chicago audition with a carful of other Butler students… and ran into about eight others, as well as two alums. I made some friends, did some ballet, learned some rep. It was fun.

The drive back, however, was slightly terrifying since the fog became so thick on the road, and sections of the highway back do not have reflectors in the lane divisions. Thank the heavens, we had a pro driver and made it back safely. After midnight.

Getting up for French was not fun this morning… I can think this semester will be awfully busy! Who else has travel stories coming from or going to auditions? Please share!

Cream is a deadly weapon

I know TSA makes the country safe, etc. I’ve never been unduly inconvenienced by new luggage restrictions or the screening process — until security stopped me as I tried to fly back to Butler.

After rummaging around in my carryon luggage, the TSA employee took out nail polish (didn’t realize that should have been a liquid), a bag of Christmas candy, a bunch of CD cases, and a grapefruit for re-screening. After all, we wouldn’t want anyone to suffer grapefruit juice burns, now, would we?

Joking aside, I’m glad the TSA takes its job seriously enough to re-screen items like to this to ensure they aren’t weapons. That’s fine. What I do take offense with is citing my jar of Nutella as a forbidden item. Well, my off-brand Nutella.

Does it look more dangerous because it's in a foreign language?

“It’s a cream,” the employee explained to me. Not the cream, NOT THE CREAM!

Back I trekked to my dad waiting outside security, unwilling to waste a jar of perfectly good hazelnut spread. I gave him the jar, said good-bye for a second time, and went through security. Again.

Of course, the line had doubled by the time I went through the screening process a second time. I must admit, I was hardly the most cheerful traveler when I arrived at my gate, ten minutes before the boarding time.

However, however! The nice Delta flight attendant asked me covertly if I wanted something else to eat with my sandwich during the drink service. So I had, in addition to my cranberry-apple juice and lightly salted peanuts, some pretzels and goldfish. She liked something salty with her sandwiches, she explained.

Actually, both flight attendants complimented my sandwich. Maybe they were hungry? Perhaps my dad makes the most awesome sandwiches in the world? Both are plausible explanations. Regardless. They restored my faith in air travel and helped fill the sorrowful abyss in my heart, rent asunder by the forceful separation from my apparently deadly Alpella Krem.

More Tastiness in Chicago

I meant to leave my trip to Chicago alone, but the many, many pictures have forced me into another post which will possibly be of no interest whatsoever to the reader. But I do love food festivals.

The best item — and the first one — I got at Taste was a fish taco. I got the mild hot sauce, though my best friend insisted on getting some of the hottest on the side. To each his own!

Then my  friend got a strange ice milk jelly object. It was okay, he told me. Since it had ice, tapioca, jelly, a milky-tea-bit, and was supposed to have red bean (though they didn’t add it), I decided to pass.

One stand was selling fruit, watermelon and cherries, grapes and pineapple, for rather good prices. Though it was not as hot as it was supposed to be that day, the watermelon was still quite refreshing. Add the frozen banana I got, and you have our Taste of Chicago purchases!

I suppose I should blog about something other than food. Next time, I promise! (I hope.)

Tips for College Living, #3

It has rained pretty much every day this April. Okay, maybe not every day. But if you look at the month calendar, you might notice that the longest stretch without any measure of precipitation is three days. That’s pretty rainy.

Steph wrote a great post last week about the six necessities of a college student. I would like to add one more item to the list. When it rains, I like to wear my rain jacket because I don’t have to juggle an umbrella. (And we all know how good my juggling skills are.) But umbrella, rain jacket… all good items, all items you know you’ll need.

This is common-sense stuff. What you, prospective student, might not know is that Butler’s sidewalks frequently morph into small creeks when it rains. You also might underestimate the increase in walking from place to place outside each day. Even in tennis shoes, my feet tend to get wet. Call this another episode of Tips for College Living: Own rain boots.

Sometimes it pours while I move all my stuff from my freshman dorm room to the ResCo basement, where I stored some items over the summer break. Then it clears up for the long drive home. Sometimes the weather is nice and holds off while I pack up everything to leave. Then, as we drive back to Virginia, enter the deluge.

Which situation is better? And should I really try to ride my bike in the rain if my brakes get slippery when wet? Will you remember to bring rain boots to college? Most importantly, should I take up juggling practice again?

Blue II, awesome mascot

One of the other advantages of the Butler basketball media machine? Billions of stories about Blue II, Butler’s English bulldog mascot!

Everyone loves Blue.

Since the Final Four and Championship games were in Indianapolis last year (and here I would link to my old blog posts about last year’s championship festivities if the new technology hadn’t eaten my archives…. grrrr…), I saw Blue much more often. Since Blue was in Houston this year, and I was not? No Blue sightings. Well, unless you count the photos someone stuck in the skywalk between Jordan and Gallahue hall:

Houston, we don't have a problem.

Still, I like the real Blue better.

Blue is quite the popular bulldog. If you don’t follow his Twitter, you are missing out on some cute pictures. For a while, my mother changed the desktop picture on the family computer whenever Blue’s owners posted a new picture. The desktop background changed at least once a day.

Blue’s travels to Houston created a whole new host of photo ops. I particularly enjoyed the airport sequence:

(These are not my photos, obviously. Blue has his own Flickr photostream.)

Seriously, though. Talk about celebrity. This dog also has a Facebook page, blog, Youtube channel, and even a live webcam! And more fans than Justin Bieber. [I originally misspelled that as “Beiber” and had to check to see which was correct. Don’t worry. I’m still sane.]

Tips for college living, #2

Ah, the out of state student. How envious are you of your friends who can drive home with a basket full of dirty laundry, a bin of papers and textbooks, and as many sweatshirts/sweaters as will fit in the trunk of a car!

I feel for you, out of state students who take to the airport–not to the road–when holiday time rolls around. I therefore offer forth this list of travel tips.

Tips for college living, #2: The airport edition

1. If you wear your college gear, expect strangers to strike up conversations with you concerning your school, your major, and your hometown. If you are in the talkative mood, go for it! If your flight is exceptionally early in the morning or late at night, perhaps skip the Butler sweatshirt.

2. If you sit in an exit row, expect the flight attendant to ask your age. One must be over fifteen to sit in an exit row; I still get inquiries. Go figure. Aaaand… this is not really a tip. Next!

3. Bring an empty water bottle through the security checkpoint. This avoids going over the 3 ounce limit on liquids and still saves you the cost of buying overpriced drinks once in the gate area. You can fill the bottle at a water fountain. As a typically-money-strapped college student, I approve of all budget-friendly tricks.

4. Backpacks make excellent carry-on items. As a college student, I have several backpacks from which to chose. Also, you can pack dirty clothes to take home and wash and wear… you should simply be a bit more selective than your “I’m driving home this weekend” friends.

5. Obtain a luggage scale. Most airlines place a 50 pound limit on checked baggage. If you are checking a bag, weigh it ahead of time so you won’t have to shuffle items between bag and carry-on. If you see you have room, try to think of items you no longer need at school. For instance, I had extra space (by “space,” I mean “weight”) in my bag this trip home, so I brought back some books I no longer need at Butler.

Now if only I could find a spot for them on my overstuffed bookcase…

Right, I suppose those tips were not overly helpful. Some were more comments than tips, and other don’t apply just to college students. By all standards of goodness and light, I should delete this entire post and spare you the pain of reading it. Then again, if you are still reading this far, it is of your own volition.

Tip 6. Choose a seat near the front of the plane. It’s much faster when deplaning! The further up, the better, I say. Randall Munroe, creator of webcomic  XKCD, agrees with me. So it must be true.