Sunday, October 7, 2012

Should I type the notes? or Write it?

So I had about three hours of official lectures last week.  Somehow at Cambridge each week starts on Thursday?  Yup.. not Sunday or Monday... but Thursday.  Yes... I raised my eyebrow.  But a wise man keeps telling me "resistance is futile..." so I accept it and don't question it.

The first lecture was on Land Law.  5 past the hour, the lecturer starts to lecture (obviously) and you could hear about 200 people madly typing away.  It was weird.  I guess it's because I haven't sit in a lecture with this many students for a long long time.  My last time there were this many students in one room was... 1996?? And way back then, no one had a laptop in a class.  Unfortunately, I was one of them but I couldn't not type everything like some of these kids.  They must be machine.  I wonder if they are actually digesting the material at all or typing the lecture word by word.

Last Saturday, I attended an introductory lecture on "Studying Law", where the professor suggested hand writing the notes instead of typing.  So I think I may try that tomorrow?  But then I will want a set of typed notes eventually.  But I just can't type everything.  What to do what to do.


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Still haven't found my routine

I got up at a decent time today.  Maybe quarter past 5?  But then I was dead by the time I got back from my second supervision from walking so much.

Who knew that going to a fancy school like Cambridge would require so much walking?  Well, I actually didn't expect anything although I was warned that I would need a bike.

So I got a bike, and because I am not very good with speed and also I haven't ridden a bike for like 25 years or so, I got a bike with smaller wheels, a folding bike.  The problem with that is that I am going much slower than other people - so big wheeled people want to pass me AND it requires me to pedal a lot harder.  Geez.. that kinda defeats the purpose of having a bike, doesn't it?  I wanted to get around easier not harder.  So now what my bike does is... it allows me to go to places slightly faster but not with less efforts.  And since I am not very good at riding it yet, I feel like I am a danger to myself ADN to the Cambridge society.  Hmm... maybe I should get up early on the weekends and practice riding.

I had two supervisions one at Trinity and one at Robinson (and both are really really far) and I kinda started to get what they are for.  It is really an odd system if you think about it.  I don't think I got this much supervision / care even from high schools (and I attended three in two different countries).

I am going to have lots of reading.  Too much for my little printer - which is being delivered tomorrow to handle I think.  Will I be able to read it all?  And keep it in my brain?  I guess we just have to find out soon.

Oh yeah, I meant to talk about how I don't have my routine.  Many things that I do involve internet.  For some reason, maybe HH is a bit away from the main campus or it is just a smaller college, I'm just not getting a good school wifi.  I am used to 20M download, which is not actually that great in some sense.  Ok it doesn't have to be that fast but at least be stable?  Is that too much to ask in this day and age?  Argh... I am expecting that I should be able to watch Netflix or iPlayer online (well actually I should) but at least if I am emailing and surfing for course books, it should stay on-line?  Is that too much to ask?

Anyways, I am spending much time trying to figure out how to store files, where to store files, etc.  Should I buy kindle books when available?  Should I read cases on iPad?  Should I just print everything?

Another thing is that now I only have an access to Mac (yeah school has PCs) and getting things done on MS Office suite on Mac is not always the best.

Ok, enough of whinging.


[photo: I need more comfortable shows than these]

Monday, October 1, 2012

It's been a week

Well almost a week.

I moved in the dorm last Tuesday and it's Monday evening so... it's been almost a week.

So much has happened.  It feels like I have been here for a long time even I spent two out of six nights in London.

First of all, there was no heat from September 25 to September 30.  It was FREEZING.  At least I had a thick duvet from Ikea which I was so thankful for but it seemed like some other people kept waking up in the middle of the night because it was so cold.

So today is the first day with heat.  I was worried that they will be stingy with heat but so far it seems that the small radiator can heat up quite nicely.  It almost feels like I have a space heater under my desk.  Yes.. toasty.. so nice...

To quickly summarize what took place since September 25 -

September 25 - it was a registration day.  Most of LLM and BA aff Law students had to register (I think.  I think the BA Law registered some other day).  And I got my room assigned.  It has a nice view of the garden and has an ensuite bathroom.  You know what, I did not expect anything so this is not bad.  There also was Welcome Tea which was a good opportunity to meet a few people.

September 26 - Went to look for a bike with one of the floormates who are taking the same program as I do.  She managed to buy one but I didn't.  I was going to order from Amazon and I did.. but my credit card had some issues so eventually I had to cancel the order.

September 27 - omg.  I don't remember what happened on 27 already.  Man my memory is shot.  How am I going to survive the law school?  Oh yes, I went to the first set of Introductory lectures.  All three were very good.  I uploaded the notes.

September 28 - I went to the second set of Introductory lectures.  All three lectures were very interesting but there were many terms that I had to pay keen attentions so my notes weren't as good - so I haven't uploaded them yet.

September 29 - Saturday was the Matriculation day.  I don't actually understand the purpose of it but over all it was nice.  I don't think any of the schools I have been to had similar functions.  No school took photos like you would do for graduation before I started the course.  But then I never took graduation photos... maybe when I graduate from Cambridge, I will take some grad photos?

Also, on Saturday, I had a meeting with my tutor.  He told me that I should do some things other than studying law otherwise I will go crazy.  I didn't really tell him that I don't have hobbies that are typically enjoyed by majority of people.  I didn't tell him that my hobbies are going to Costco for shopping, looking for (residential) properties to purchase, and looking for next startup ideas.  Oh I do paint, draw and take photos sometimes but they didn't seem that significant.

After the meeting with my tutor, I went to London.  I also managed to get a 16-25 railcard, a card that allows you to get 1/3 discount on rail tickets for one year for £28.  I was going to meet D at Kings Cross and funny enough, I got to Kings Cross like 25 min earlier from Cambridge that D from Wandsworth.

My main purpose of the trip to London was (other than seeing my beloved) to get my bank card picked up but I couldn't manage it due to London's commuter traffic.  Well let's just say I thought Vancouver was bad.

After an unsuccessful attempt to pick up my bank package, D dropped me off at the Putney train station.  So from there, took a train to Vauxhall, on Victoria Line to Kings Cross St. Pancras, and from Kings Cross to Cambridge.  Overall from Putney, it took about 2 hrs to get to Cambridge.

Today, October 1, I had a meeting with my Director of Studies (DoS) to discuss this year's subjects.  It seems like I will be taking: constitutional law, contract law, tort, land law, and international law.  They all sounds very interesting.  Tomorrow, supervisions will start.  And I was surprised to find out the supervisions are all over the campus.  I mean ALL OVER!!!  I was trying to get by without getting a bike but after learning where my supervisions are (and I have these five times every other week on top of lecture that I have every day at the law school - which is also 25min walking distance).  I finally gave in and bought a bike.

Well I think this is long enough now.  I should turn in soon because I have two supervisions tomorrow and before the first one, I have to go and pick up my bicycle.


[photo: Cambridge Squire Law Library]