Loose Posters & Spider Cleavage (When it’s Hot in England)

We Brits are well known for complaining about the weather. If it’s cold, we don’t like it. If it’s hot, we can’t cope with it. If it snows, we think it’s pretty initially, then a pain in the arse to drive in. Essentially, if it’s anything other than a mid-range temperature where you’re not hot but not cold (i.e. on extremely rare occasions), we will find something to complain about.

So I came home for the summer the weekend before last, having spent the majority of the past nine months in windy, windy Liverpool. Did I mention it’s windy up there? Anyway, so I come home and suddenly the country has a heat wave! It is not windy where I live. I honestly think my town could run for the least windy part of the UK. As I look out of my window at the trees right now, there are about four tree branches that are vaguely shifting maybe a couple of inches side to side. The rest of them? Still.

Anyway, this past weekend has been especially hot. 32C, or 89F, which may sound cool enough to those of you from countries that are meant to be hot, but heat in England is way hotter than heat in a hot country. I don’t know how it works, but our land and our buildings and the fact we only have heating, not air con, means we cannot cope.

I’ve adopted a fan in my room which hasn’t really been off much for the past week. And early on Saturday morning I woke up to a persistent flapping sound every few seconds. Turns out that the fan had loosened half of the blu tac holding up the poster I have above my head. There was some debate going on in my head – you know, do I leave it there and risk it falling on my face when I go back to sleep… and so I ended up standing on my pillow at half five in the morning, putting the poster back up.

land army poster
(The poster in question)

Then on Sunday, father’s day here in the UK, I went to the outhouse to grab an ice lolly (that’s where we keep our freezer), when a spider came out of nowhere, and fell into the cleavage of the playsuit I was wearing, causing me to freak out. I thought it simply fell through from the top and out of the bottom, ’cause it’s a short playsuit, but I wasn’t 100% sure. So I go back inside, place the lolly on the counter, and then notice it crawling up out of my cleavage! I’m an arachnophobe, if you don’t know, and so there was much squealing and flapping around, then it ended up in my hair and there was more squealing and flapping around, until eventually it fell onto the floor.

And finally, today, I checked behind my curtain, where there was a new candle I’d forgotten existed, which had melted from the heat and sun coming through my window, leaving a huge puddle of wax on hte windowsill… What’s been happening this week?!

Either way, I’m trying to be productive in this jobless time, and have been working on my writing. Not blog writing yet, but other writing, and I feel like I’ve been making good progress. Hopefully I’ll get this project I’m working on done soon enough, and then I’ll probably be able to focus more on other things. For now, I’m just typing away.

Katy x

Marshmallows & Magazines

Hello! This is officially my second day at home for the summer, having spent the weekend finishing packing up my flat and moving back home. I feel like you can never quite anticipate how many things you accumulate in the process of living at uni for a year, particularly when self-catered, until it actually happens.

I spent all of yesterday unpacking the two large suitcases it took to contain my entire uni wardrobe and towels, as well as sorting out some old stuff to go to charity or elsewhere, and putting away various boxes of shoes and toiletries. I have an abundance of the latter at the moment due to having the same things at home and at uni so that I wouldn’t have to transport them back and forth… So now I’ve got cleansers a-plenty!

What was nice was coming home to the arrival of the new Blogosphere magazine, as well as an array of stationery-type things from my mum, and a bag she bought me in Spain. While I unpacked I found some marshmallows and had a hot chocolate in one of the mugs I missed while I was at uni (it’s from the Elephant Café in Edinburgh, where J.K. Rowling wrote a fair amount of Harry Potter). It’s the small things that count, right?

the one i am using

So now that most of my unpacking has been done, I have to think about summer. Largely in terms of employment. Despite applying for dozens of things, my streak of rejection has not yet come to an end! Which means that I will likely end up visiting an agency again. Who knows what I’ll end up doing? Keeping optimistic about the jobs market is something I’m not sure anybody has mastered, but we try regardless.

I’m also hoping for some exciting things to happen! Despite living just outside of London my entire life, there are tonnes of tourist-y things I’ve never done there, so me and my mum are planning to do a few of those. Plus I may be going up to York at some point, and there are various other things I might be doing, and if it all works out, there should be some good posts going up over the next couple of months!

For now, though, that’s all – I’ll see you on Thursday with another post!

Katy x

It’s Ending Already?!

Hello and welcome to my first post of May! I honestly didn’t intend to take this recent break, I just had a super bad week when I got back to uni which sucked all creativity out of me, and then a deadline which took up the whole of this last week. I didn’t want to not post, but I didn’t want to post totally miserable or totally boring things either.

But, my final essay of my first year at uni has been submitted, I’m almost finished with one of my four modules, and then I’ll just have 3 exams to contend with and that’s it! First year over!

It’s mad to think that one third of my time at uni is almost over. A whole third. And I’m kind of happy about it, not because I’m desperate for it to be over by any means, but because if it’s going quickly, it means I’m enjoying it. I don’t want this period of my life to drag out, I want it to be something I achieve because I’ve always wanted to, and that I look back on with pride.

BUT. It is not over yet. I have a long slog of revision ahead of me (I mean, I have just over two weeks to my first exam and have only just started revising… It’s a tad nerve-wracking, but I’ll deal).

One thing I am really glad about though, is that I’ve chosen my modules for next year and I’m halving the amount of exams I’ll have to take! This year I had three after my first semester, and I’ve got three coming up. Next year I’ll have two after my first semester and only one after my second.

I realise that to anyone taking GCSEs currently, that will sound like a miniscule amount of exams, and I sympathise completely with your plight. My academic year was the first to have linear GCSEs rather than modular, and I had 22 exams at the end of year 11. The great thing about uni is that after first year, it’s largely up to you how you get assessed – prefer exams? Choose exam modules. Hate exams like the plague? Choose coursework modules.

Quick FYI, though: most exam modules include coursework anyway so if you’re trying to avoid coursework then good luck to ya.

Anyway, to get back on topic, I was thinking the other night about how I’m so close to the end of this year at uni, and it was just one of those moments where you realise what you’ve actually done. This time last year I was desperate to leave my town, I was doubting even getting in to uni, and everything was so pressured. Now I’ve spent the last nine months living in Liverpool, studying what I want, with way more freedom than I’ve ever had.

It is quite funny though – you’ll be going about your day at uni, feeling like your standard student, a bit incompetent when it comes to actual life – you know, dishes from two days ago sitting on your windowsill etc – and then something happens that reminds you about your actual responsibilities. For me it was buying Mr Muscle Drain Gel and a book of stamps. Stamps. I’ve never bought either of those in my lifetime before.

I’ve spent a while recently planning/writing blog posts so I’ll be back again on Thursday!

Katy x