Friday, 24 February 2012

Five Things Fridays: Five reasons why I won't be sad to finish uni

(as expected, I found it quite difficult deciding which five things were going to make the list :P)

1. I won't miss having to clean up after other people who should be cleaning up after themselves.
Every place I've lived while I've been at uni, I've ended up cleaning up after people who are old enough and capable enough of cleaning up after themselves. Dirty dishes left for days, food left to fester in the fridge until it goes beyond the point of rotten, rubbish strewn all over the place when the bin is a metre or two away, pubes all over the bath/shower, toilets that never get cleaned (even when there's pee on them *vom*), mildew all over the walls, bits of food left in the kitchen sink... all little tiny things that don't take long to sort out if you've got half an ounce of common sense, yet people don't do them. Why?! Laziness? Never having to take responsibility for looking after themselves until they came to uni so they don't know how to do it  or even register that it needs to be done? Not caring about decency towards other people living in the house? I really don't know, probably a combination of all those factors and more.

2. I won't miss the work
I feel like I put a lot of effort into the work on my course, yet no matter how hard I try my marks get progressively worse. Needless to say this has left me feeling really disheartened about work, and lacking motivation to do it. Although my marks have been picking up this term, so fingers crossed this gives me the motivation I need to get to the end of the year!

3. I won't miss the "banter"
"Banter", for those not surrounded by arrogant 20-something men, is basically bullying and verbal abuse that is then excused under the explanation that it's "banter" and only meant to be light-hearted. Call me dull and boring if you want, but I can't stand it and I think it's just miserable idiots finding an excuse to be pricks and get amusement from making other people unhappy. I've been the victim to a lot of this and it's really hurt me - at times when I've needed support from people and have just got insults it stings especially hard. A website called UniLad was recently shut down after it posted an article saying something along the lines of "rape is just banter". Urgh.

4. I won't miss feeling like I need to drink until I pass out in order to be accepted
Well, that's a slight overexaggeration, but it literally took me two years to get people to understand that I don't like getting drunk for personal reasons, as well as the fact that I really don't see the appeal of going out once a week to spend a load of money, make a tit out of myself, wreck my liver and feel atrocious the next day. I've seen the horrible effects of what drink can do to people, and I'm not saying that every student is going to end up an alcoholic, but by doing duties at our student's union on party nights I've seen and treated so many people who are incapable of retaining any sense of dignity because they've drunk far too much. I'd rather not be that person, and I can't wait to find people that accept that and let me be.

5. I won't miss the ever-increasing student debt
I'm so glad I've done uni now and am not going to be starting next year when the £9,000 fees are brought in. I feel so sorry for those who are or have been put off going to uni because of it :(. The £3,500ish that I've paid each year has racked me up enough debt, I would hate for it to be even more. I also hate the feeling of spending money that isn't mine (i.e. getting into debt) so I can't wait to start getting my loan paid off so it's not hanging over my head any more and I know that the money I have is mine to spend without oweing anyone anything.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

I love it when I have those moments...

... where it feels like life is going to turn out ok after all.

I went out for dinner this evening with Steve and his parents, and after dinner (Cornish crab cakes with salad, and warm citrus cake with kemon curd cream fod dessert, mmmm) while his parents were very kindly sorting out the bill Steve and I took his dog for a walk along the beach. It was such a simple thing, and something that for anyone who's used to always having a dog around would feel like just another daily chore, but to me it was such a beautiful moment. I was so happy, and I could see myself doing that every day for the rest of my life. And I can very definitely imagine Steve being the person by my side every day. Normally thinking about my future just makes me not very happy, so it makes an unbelievable amount of difference to be feeling like this.
Saying "let's get married and spend the rest of our lives together" where I am right now if definitely not on the cards, but if it's things like this and feelings like this that life has in store, then I can't wait :)

Friday, 17 February 2012

Five Things Fridays: Five reasons why I'll be sad to finish uni

(and coming next week, five reasons why I won't be sad to finish uni :P)

1. I'll miss having my own space.
In the short term at least, I'll have to move back home. There's no way I can afford to rent a place, pay bills and afford to live at the same time, especially as I'm not planning on getting a job for at least 6 months after graduating. I find it strange when I go back home during the holidays; I really miss having the freedom to get up and go to be when I want, to go out and come home when I want, and to be able to make my space my own. I'm not saying that my mum's super strict - she's actually really relaxed and doesn't mind if I go out places and she doesn't force me to get up/go to sleep (I really hope she wouldn't, I am 21 after all...), but she does start to nag and tell me that I've got so much to do and I could be doing so many other more productive things (e.g. tidying up, cleaning the house or doing uni work) and the nagging starts to grate on my nerves after a while. Plus I feel like I'm getting in the way of her life and disturbing her if I go about doing my own thing.

2. I'll miss living in Cornwall
See point 1 about having to move back home because I won't be able to afford to live, so this rules out staying in Cornwall too :(. The more I think about it the more I realise that I've really liked living here as it's such a beautiful place, but due to spending all of the first and most of the second year of my degree alone and feeling pretty depressed (and consequently spending most of my time indoors because there's only so much you can do alone) I really haven't made the most of my time here. When I've learnt to drive and got a car (which will be this summer if everything goes to plan, about time too!) I'd love to come back and either take a long holiday or get a job down here so I can go out and do all the things I've wanted to do but now won't have time to do (or things that I simply haven't been able to do because lack of a car makes it impossible to get there).

3. I'll miss having people to talk to close by
Apart from one person, I haven't kept in touch with anyone I was friends with at school/college. I drifted away from the people that I was friends with at college at the beginning of our second year there, and to be honest while it was hard at the time and I still feel kind of bitter that they didn't want to keep me as a friend yet stayed friends with each other, I think it was for the best as I've come to realise that most of them aren't very nice people. As I mentioned above, I spent the first half of my degree alone as I had no friends, so I got used to having no one to talk to but it wasn't very good for me. Now I've finally worked to the point where, even though I still don't have people that I go out and socialise etc. with, there are quite a few people that I can have a decent conversation with, so I don't feel completely alone any more. When I finish uni that's going to completely disappear, and I'll be back to square one on the "make a friend" game, which for some reason I seem to find abnormally difficult. It'll be even harder because I won't have a school/college situation to aid me in making friends, and until I get a job I'll be out there in the big wide world by myself and I'll have to work so much harder to find friends. I don't want to get a job for a while after I graduate (I want to enjoy the last decent holiday I'll ever have!) so it's going to be a very long few months...

4. I'll miss not having to get up and do something every day
At the moment I can have quite relaxed days. The past couple of days, for instance, have been spent doing casual bits of work for my research project, catching up with Junior Doctors on iplayer (and cringing at some of the mistakes they make), baking shortbread and rock cakes, and generally being a bit of a slob. While I do work hard (trust me, I usually have 4 modules a term plus SJA so I'm usually constantly on the go), when I do have a bit of time when life isn't so busy I like being able to get up and do my uni work at my own pace, in my own room, and I can get up and do something else or nip into town for half an hour when I need a break. When I get a job that's going to disappear, because my employer will tell me when I need to be there, what hours I need to work and how much I need to get done, I won't have the freedom to choose for myself any more.

5. I'll miss student discount
I think this one is pretty self explanatory ;)

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

A post that's not about snow.

My Google Reader and Facebook have been filled with posts about the snow the UK's been having over the past few days, which would normally be quite exciting for me... except Cornwall is the only place in the country that hasn't had snow, and we aren't forecast to get any either. Bah. In fact, the view from my window right now is this...
Please excuse the rubbish webcam photo, I didn't think the miserable weather was worthy of me getting my proper camera out.

So, instead of going out and building snowmen and suchlike, I've bought myself one of these:
When I was 12/13 I wrote in a diary every day for a year. I love having a snapshot of my life to look back on, and I regret not keeping a diary since then. I spotted these on a couple of blogs and thought it was a lovely idea. I especially like the fact that you can compare what you've been doing on each day across the years just by looking at one page.
When I told my mum I wanted one of these she made the noise that means "I'm not impressed" and "You're wasting your money on more crap?!". Yet I found out she kept diaries quite a bit when she was younger, and even kept a five-year diary at one point! Except she's thrown them away which I was quite sad about as I would've loved to have read them to see how much I'm like my mum when she was my age.

One last thing that isn't at all snow related: I gave my 5th blood donation yesterday which I'm pretty proud of :). I've done a post about giving blood here so I'll spare you the speech about why everyone should go and do it :P

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Five Things Fridays - Update: 5 animals I wanted to see in South Africa

I've managed to slack on Five Things Fridays already, I'm terrible. I've been really busy (and also stuck in post- Christmas and New Year laziness mode) since I got back from South Africa and came back down to Cornwall, so the weeks keep rolling around and I completely forget to write the posts I have in mind >.<. But I'm going to try and catch up from this week onwards!
As a small attempt to start catching up, here's the updated version of my Five Things Fridays post on the animals I most wanted to see on my trip, complete with photos I took when I saw the animals up close!

Five animals I wanted to see in South Africa (and did!)

1. Elephants
2. Great White Sharks

3. Rhinos

4. Lions

5. Zebras