The Christmas holiday is finally here, and I have the next two weeks off. The last days at school have been very busy, as I have been working on “King Lear”, a famous play by William Shakespeare.
The play is extremely difficult to read because Shakespeare (26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) wrote this in “Old English” which is a language that is no longer in use. On top of the already difficult language, every character in the play has a unique way of speaking. For example, “the fool” and “Tom the madman” always speak only in riddles, so whatever they say can have several different meanings. Our English teacher helped us to understand the most difficult parts of the text, so that we weren’t completely lost.
But now that we’re finally done with the book, after countless hours of highlighting important lines, summarizing chapters and discussing the meaning and the quotes in class, I’m actually a bit sad but also relieved.
So what does “King Lear” tell us? How a simple action, a small mistake can have terrible consequences. It also teaches us that we should try to make rational and logical decisions and not be guided by our own flaws of character. Without revealing too much about the story, just remember that the main character in the play becomes the victim of his own ambitions, driven by decisions that are not based on rational thought. But I would really like to encourage you to either read the book yourself or see one of the many plays. It’s a good story and also you’ll be able to show off in front of your friends by reciting “King Lear” quotes!
Having finally finished the book is both a blessing and a curse. We had to write a five page essay about the play. Now you also know why there have not been so many posts in the last couple of days. As usual, I first had to write the essay on my computer and run it through the spell-checker, so as to avoid any typos. Unfortunately, the essay has to be written by hand so I had to copy everything back to paper in my best handwriting (not the world-war II style, I’m used to). It took forever, but now it’s done and to quote “King Lear”: “Thou shouldst not have been old till thou hadst been wise.”
Last weekend, I went bowling. The timing was slightly inconvenient because I had my essay I was working on but this was a mandatory EF event. I had some trouble finding the bowling centre, and I arrived 15 minutes late. As you know, being late is not common for a Swiss person. Swiss people like to eat chocolate and cheese for breakfast, they only drink milk from their own cow and they are never ever late. Staying in Ireland has changed me, I’m becoming more Irish!
I won the game against the other EF exchange students and the main prize was the last piece of delicious pizza. It was great fun and we also talked about the next EF excursion in February, which will take us across the border to Belfast and the famous “Titanic Museum”. I’m already looking forward to that!