Homesick at Space Camp

Sorry.  I’ve slipped even further behind on updating.  But this time, I have an excuse, because I was actually doing things.

I went to Cyprus, which was fine.  Relaxing, reading my pre-University reading list, sun, sea, sand…

I went to see underOATH at The Astoria, but really went for the support band, Envy on the Coast, who I met after the gig.

You know what? I can’t be bothered to do this chronologically.  We’re going for a stream-of-consciousness thing, now.

I’m at university.  Royal Holloway, University of London.  It’s in Egham, really.  Freshers’ Week?  That was dull, considering I expected a debaucherous seven-day festival.  Plus, everyone goes home at the weekend.

Now that was a depressing start to the term, as I learned a few home truths: it’s quicker for me to get to London (and more direct) from Godalming than Egham; everyone goes home at the weekend; our “Special Guest” at the Freshers’ Ball was Razorlike.

No, not Razorlight, but their tribute band.  And that was the most interesting event our Union had to offer.

My flat is great, though.  Only a year old, the block is great – eight flats to a kitchen, spacious, modern, each with en suite.  Granted, it’s not Founder‘s, but unlike their catered, Grade I-listed 19th Century castle (Serbian hostel-esque accommodation), we have internet and our own shower.  You can weigh that one up yourself.  Anyway, everyone here is lovely, and my eight flatmates (six ladies, two men) are equally fun.  Of note, we managed to get almost the whole block in our kitchen for a warming par-tay on the first night.  That’s about thirty-five people.  The second night we went out on a mediocre pub crawl, so we came home early and stole a To Let sign.

If you want to write to me: Tuke Hall, F-3A-05.  That’s block F, on the third floor, on the right next to our kitchen. Just buzz and I’ll let you in, and you can see my room.  It looks a bit like this:

Anyway, after the ‘hysteria’ of Freshers’ Week, this ‘teaching and learning’ part of university began.  I’ve got Wednesdays and Thursdays off, and 5 lectures and 5 seminars around that.  It’s not particularly intensive, either – most notably there was a “student” in my Introduction To Sonnets lecture who learned for the first time that Shakespeare wrote sonnets.  Who knew?

At some point over the first three weeks, I’ve come down with a terrible, incurable case of Freshers’ Fever. As well as the flu, it involves signing up to…everything.  It’s also identified as ‘being a bit of a whore’ and may include ‘spreading oneself too thin’.

So, my first port of call, was reputable and successful independent (i.e. no money from the SU, and therefore allowed to slag off the SU if we want) student newspaper, The Founder.  Inexplicably, surprisingly, ecstatically, I’m News Editor.  And the only Fresher on the Editorial Board.  Wrote my first article and it made it onto (the left hand side of) the front page.  Hear that ma?  I’m a real (student) journalist.  My NUJ press pass is in the post and everything.

Next stop, Insanity Radio, an official Student’s Union media outlet.  After a cock-up with ringing me, I didn’t manage to get a presenter slot (bah!), but hopefully I’ll be on the News Show.  See a developing theme? Mm.  I’m on the music team for Insanity, too, which gets me lots of free CDs I have to review and I’m interviewing Pause.Break.Riot on 23rd October. Exciting.

Okay, so I’m disillusioned with the Union.  What do I do about it? Become Halls Representative for Tuke, Butler and Williamson, Student Representative for the Media/Communications sub-committee and Commercial Services sub-committee, obviously (?!!).  But I did make sure I didn’t nominate myself for First Year Rep.  That’s a bit too much.

I overslept and missed all team trials in my first week (not that I was ever in any team at RGS), but my heart’s really in this journalism lark, which you already knew about me, anyway.  So I dropped out of the Drama Society’s chorus role they gave me, and inexplicably got embroiled in the Media Society, becoming Communications Officer.  I only went to their AGM because my seminar was next door.  I swear, apart from The Founder and Insanity Radio (maybe the SU sub-par publication The Orbital ‘magazine’), I didn’t really want to do anything else.

My sleeping patterns now revolve around going to bed at close to five every morning, which means my Critical Practice essay on Homer for Friday is being done….now.  Pope vs. Fagles, anyone?

Oh, food.  I always forget about that. Having your own kitchen is great, and I do love cooking, but I’ve learned to love the simplicity and efficiency of ready meals.

Remove sleeve. Pierce film.

Fantastic.