Southern Miss International Programs Newsletter
•New & Noteworthy•
International Food Fair
April 14, 11:30-1:30 at the BSU
Come and enjoy a myriad of styles of phenomenal cooking at the annual International Food Fair! Students from around the world will be making the food they love and sharing it with their fellow USM students, faculty and staff. Tickets are $2 and can be bought at the door.
•Lets Go International•
Weekend Explore trips offer history, hominess
by British Studies alum Willie Tubbs
Unless you’ve lived in New York, Los Angeles, or another of this nation’s massive cities, you might want a little break from London. In my case, I needed a one-day coach ride (don’t call it a bus or the driver will become offended) through the English countryside to smaller (though still exceptional) towns to remind myself there were places that do, in fact, sleep. I hoped to experience life in fly-over England and soak in the rich history of places we’ve all read about but probably assume are found in London.
London is a mixture of thrilling and overwhelming. You are at once awed by the history, majesty and scope of the place yet still just a little bit taken aback at how an hour-long train ride will not necessarily get you out of the city. This isn’t to say I wanted to run from London like a Pomeranian from a pit bull, but I welcomed the chance to see some green.
I opted for Dover/Canterbury because I am a bigger World War II nerd than I am for early architectural wonders, but I still regret not seeing Stonehenge or the amazing cathedral at Winchester. Luckily, an equally stunning and historically significant cathedral awaited me in Canterbury, the tales of which you at least heard about once upon a time in high school.
We began our day in Dover, which was my favorite stop on the trip.
I gawked at the grand White Cliffs. I shuddered when I realized I was standing in Dover Castle, which, in addition to having served a huge role for the Brits in World War II, was built almost 300 years before Columbus sailed the ocean blue. The view from Dover Castle is fabulous. You can see France across the English Channel on a clear day. The animals of Dover proved an unexpected highlight for me. Dover Castle is home to some of the wooliest sheep you’ll ever see, as well as a selection of birds and the odd rabbit, all of which were welcome sights. You don’t realize how much you miss home until the smell of hay and livestock nearly move you to tears. As I watched the sheep graze along the tall, thin natural wall just beyond the castle wall, I realized that I’d basically just seen pigeons and dogs in London. Nothing wrong with either of those, but variety is what makes life great.
Canterbury is different. It’s a town with a population of about 55,000. Think of your favorite midsized city – much smaller than Jackson but a tad larger than Hattiesburg. Now plop a 236-foot tall, acre-plus wide church in the middle of it. Now make that church look like a gothic castle.That, a vibrant shopping district and a little creek that runs through town is Canterbury. Go for the Cathedral, stay for the barbecue. The Cathedral, which was founded in the 500s (not 1500s, 500s), is even more beautiful than the pictures and contains the remains of kings and queens.The barbecue, which is always pork, tastes as close to home as you will find.
I'm a PhD student and was in London to do research, so I wasn’t able to take advantage of both Weekend Explore trips. I had to choose between Dover/Canterbury and Stonehenge/Winchester. Talk about your tough spots. Did I want to see the white cliffs or the place that inspired a Spinal Tap song and a plethora of conspiracy theories? In all seriousness, if I had it to do over again I would have sprung for both trips and just played catch-up on my research.
If you are going on the British Studies Program, you too can visit Dover Castle and Canterbury on the Weekend Explore trip! *Space is limited for all excursions and a seat may be reserved by paying the fee ($50) directly to the Office of International Programs by check, credit card, or cash. To pay, stop by OIP or give us a call at 601.266.4344.
Can't go abroad this summer? Here are compatible sites to See in the USA...
You have three options with this one: Salem, New Hampshire's Stonehenge is a replica in name only, but it is the setting of what is thought to be the oldest human construction in the United States. "Foamhenge" can be found in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. While it is made entirely of Styrofoam, it is an exact replica and the creator even placed the "stones" in their astronomically correct positions. The third option (and my personal favorite) is the miniature Stonehenge in Ingram, Texas. You stumble upon the icon after driving through miles and miles of beautiful Texas hill country, and bonus: right next to Stonehenge, you can find a couple of Easter Island heads!
2. Eiffel Tower
Again, you have multiple options here. Perhaps the most famous Eiffel Tower replicas are the two found in Las Vegas, Nevada and Paradise, Nevada. The Paradise replica is 540 feet high, making it the tallest replica in the United States. Traveling with family? There are also Eiffel Towers at both Disneyworld and Disneyland! For a unique travel experience, head to Paris, Texas to see an Eiffel Tower topped with a cowboy hat.
3. London Bridge
Okay, so this one might earn you the most European credit, as it is actually the original London Bridge FROM London. The 930-foot bridge in Lake Havasu City, Arizona, once spanned the river Thames and was taken apart and shipped to the United States in the late 1960s to be rebuilt in an effort to draw tourism to the once-unknown destination. If you're in the area, don't forget to see Havasu Falls!
Pull on your cowboy boots and get to line-dancing, so you'll be in practice when you see the perfect replica of the Parthenon in Nashville, Tennessee, complete with a 42-foot tall statue of Athena. The replica is so exact that it boasts no straight lines, no columns are the same size, nor are they the same distance apart. The centerpiece of Nashville's Centennial Park houses the Museum of Athena, which consists of 19th- and 20th-century paintings by American artists.
5. Leaning Tower of Pisa
If you're heading to Chicago, take a fifteen-minute detour northeast of the O'Hare airport to the small town of Niles, Illinois. Here, you can find a half-size replica of the famous Italian landmark. The Leaning Tower of Niles was completed in 1934 to conceal a water tower that serviced two swimming pools in a nearby park.
6. Arc de Triomphe
Washington Square Park in lower Manhattan features a marble arch that was modeled on the French Arc and was built in 1890 to celebrate the centennial of the first American president's inauguration in 1789. The arch is adorned with eagles and other patriotic emblems. Fifth Avenue ran through the arch until 1964, when the neighborhood citizens insisted that the park be redesigned and closed to traffic.
7. Tulip Festival
Okay, so this isn't exactly a replica, but tulips are one of the hallmarks of the Netherlands that you can find right here in the U.S. In Skagit, Washington, from April 1-30 every year, the tulips bloom and the valley town holds cookouts, art fairs, and viewing parties.
Photo from Swansea exchange student, Addy Falgoust.
@upandaddy: "Croatia: a place where they have bears on their money and at their rest stops"
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