The following posts have no fixed theme or style, but I hope you enjoy reading them!

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Advice #11

Don't read a book and then watch the film of the book straight away.

If nothing else, you feel let down that the characters you have read about for many hours and got to know, have been portrayed shallowly in soundbites and possibly entirely differently to the people in your imagination.

Friday, 20 July 2007

Big child or young adult?

There are very few photos on here so far, so I thought I'd add one. It comes from a ball I went to last month, and I spent quite a long time on this ride, enough to feel just a little bit ill by the end!

I'm going to live near a kiddies' playpark from september, and I can't wait to go on the swings after dark (in the evening so I don't scare away little kids when I use their swings in the daytime). I love swings... they can be exciting and fun, or a quiet and reflective activity, or just a place to chat to friends, they are great!

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

You wish that you were special, I'm just like you

It's great to imagine that all the people you don't know are terrible, because that way you don't mind that you haven't tried to get to know all of them. And then it's a lovely surprise when you find out they are much nicer than you expected. Almost without exception.

And you permanently feel lucky that you have lots of nice friends who are MUCH nicer than all of the other people you don't know

Suitable song lyrics are provided by the Cardigans in the song "Losers"

Sunday, 15 July 2007

The end of third year part II

Graduation was a great occasion. I arrived at around eleven, and went with some graduands towards the ceremony. The clothes were brilliant: their shoes were newly polished (no buckles allowed), dress suits dry-cleaned and dress shirts hired. They wore white bow ties with white bands (these are old-fashioned items that you would recognise if you saw them, but I have never been required to wear them) - stiff rectangular pieces of cloth that stick out from under the bow tie. Over all that, they wore the gown appropriate to their degree. In most cases this is a black academic gown with white fur lining the hood. Most had mortarboard hats, and all this made them look fantastic. I mean, they are silly, impractical clothes, but they all looked very grand, and it made the whole day special.

I wasn't allowed into the ceremony, so you will have to remind me to describe that to you next year when I graduate myself. Meeting all of their parents was interesting because it showed that even now, parents are capable of embarassing their children (most of them were lovely though), and then it became another day of saying goodbye to friends.

It did occur to me that there are less people leaving than it seems, because some people are here for another year, some are doing different courses or getting a job here and so aren't really leaving. But there are still some people who are leaving and who I will miss a lot, including:

Mirat - gone back to America, I feel like we have got to know each other better and better over the whole year, until we were really close friends at the end of the year. Keep in contact
Katy - also gone back to America, it's been great getting to know you this year, and I hope we keep in contact and I'm gonna have to come to see you all in America to practise my accent! Memories from parties, pubs, cafes and lecture theatres will stay with me for a long time
Duncan - the third materials' scientist. We have had a great time drinking tea, especially oooooolong, judging eurovision entries, and talking about alloys of course. I hope you open a cafe someday, even if it is after you retire from teaching. I am expecting visits!
Mark - I have always taken our friendship for granted as we have lived next door for three years, but we have always got on well, and seem to be able to spend unending time together wasting time without getting bored. It's weird to have to make an effort to keep in contact, but I hope we do
Clare - graduated now, and finding a job next year. I never realised how important you are to me until you were about to leave, and I won't let you lose contact because we have been through a lot together and understand each other pretty well
Kaleen - since you will be abroad next year, I doubt we will meet again. It's a shame, because at one point we were such good friends, but these things happen sometimes, I wish you well, and will miss you very much
Dave - meeting on various evenings for tea and cheese has always been a pleasure, and it will be a shame that you are further away than "just across college" from now on
Martin - you are a really great bloke, and I could learn a lot from you, especially in friendship, tolerance and discipline. I know you well, but always wish I had got to know you a little better, and for that reason I hope we will keep in close contact

It's a long list so I have not put everyone in, there are others I am sad to see leave

Thursday, 12 July 2007

Advice #10

Have you been staring at your computer screen for more than half and hour up to this point?


Have you?

Answer me!!

Ok, well, if you won't tell me, then at least follow my advice: if you have, you should turn your hands face up and put them in your lap (just to give them a change of scene) and look away from the screen into the distance, roll your eyes a bit, and do that for half a minute. Then you can read the rest of my blog, or do whatever you were doing.

It helps prevent RSI you know (apparently)

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

The end of third year part I

Having exams a couple of weeks before everyone left meant that this term has been stressful for most of the time. And you all know that when you get stressed about something, everything else seems more stressful too. I have been worried about far too many things, and if I hadn't been working for the exams, you would have been reading lots more neurotic posts on here. Most of the worries have gone away now, with a couple of exceptions, one of which I'll explain now.

I put some parts of my life on hold for a while this term (sorry if you normally get e-mails from me but haven't recently), and have had to catch up on everything since then. Unfortunately there were only a couple of weeks between the end of exams and the end of term. For instance, there are friends who I argued with or drifted apart from, and two weeks is a short time to make up with them enough to count ourselves as close friends again. I left on good terms with everyone I think, but we are not close enough to stay in contact, and that saddens me. I have moved house a few times in the past, so I know that it's very hard to keep in contact with everyone, so it is something I'll forget about, but it's a shame nevertherless.

That doesn't mean that the last weeks of term weren't great fun, as I said in "An Exceptional Time", because the amount of great times was unbelievable and I packed a lot in.

Just realised I have sounded more negative recently than all the excitement in my life deserves (even in "An Exceptional Time"), so don't worry, I'm happy at the moment and having a lovely time :-)