I can’t believe I’ve been living in Aberystwyth for two weeks already. I’m feeling a real mix of emotions, part of me can’t believe it’s been that long already and part of can’t believe how normal it all feels already. Within that two weeks there have been real highs and lows already, I hope this settles down over the next few weeks or I’m going to end up feeling exhausted all of the time.
Academically I’ve had the introductory lecture for each of my four modules. They all seem pretty good, there’s a fair amount of emphasis on developing reflective skills this semester which will be an interesting process. Two of my modules also appear to be designed to get everyone up to a basic level of skills for both academic and computer skills, having spent as much time on the computer and having done a degree before I think these will be nice revision for me.
The biggest factor in my life at the moment is of course my accommodation. My flat of 13 rooms is now fully occupied, and what an interesting mix of individuals we’ve turned out to be. I’ve been wondering for a few days how much I could and should blog about my flatmates, I think I’m going to have to work it out as I go along. I certainly won’t be using anyone’s names, but I don’t think I’ll survive the year without sharing some of the things that are going on around here.
Like I say, there are 13 of us in the flat which is small by this hall’s standards. We initially expected it to be 5 females and 8 males as the flat is split into these two sections by the kitchen. Two of the rooms in the female section remained empty for almost the whole first week, and they’ve now been filled by two more blokes. The bathrooms are designed to be unisex, I’m sure given a few more weeks I’ll get used to walking in the bathroom to find one of the blokes coming out of the shower wearing only a towel!
There is a fair range of ages and stages of academic progress amongst us all. I’m the oldest, and then the others proceed to get younger until the youngest who is currently 19. There are a number of my flatmates that weren’t born until the 90’s! There are a couple of second year students, a handful of finalists, one other “mature” fresher and two blokes who are freshers again because they’ve failed their first year (twice in A’s case). Everyone is generally very friendly, they’ve all made the right noises about leaving my food alone so that it doesn’t get contaminated with gluten.
To start with everyone was really considerate about the fact I can’t go out much, and don’t drink, and that I need my sleep so badly and some days need naps on top of my night sleep. This week though it’s all gone wrong, Wednesday night they all went out on the History Soc’s first social, came back at about 3am and proceeded to be ridiculously loud in the bit of corridor my room is in. I was awake until gone 5am and had to be up to go across to the other campus for a 9 o’clock lecture. To make matters worse when I went out of my room on Thursday morning I found that the corridor and kitchen were covered in shaving foam, and I got back from my lecturer to find that the cleaner had reported us and we were deemed to have failed an inspection. I ended up spending most of Thursday afternoon in bed, and felt ill all day.
Whilst I found it really annoying I do feel as though I can’t blame them entirely. My health problems aren’t their problem, and they shouldn’t have to change their behaviour as a result of them. I did choose to come into the halls environment, they didn’t choose to have me here. I’ve already been told that this isn’t the right way to think about it, but hey ho.
Last night they all went out to Quids In – the night at the students union where all drinks are, surprisingly enough, £1. I’d fallen asleep but was woken up at 2.30 when they got back. D in particular was absolutely off his face, shouting in the corridor and then banging on my door to wake me up. I don’t have a clue what time I finally fell asleep again. Tonight they’ve all gone out again, I’m already waving my sleep goodbye. I don’t know how long they, and I, are going to be able to sustain this for if I’m perfectly honest.
On top of the noisiness they’ve also hit a really silly patch, acting like my 6 – 8 year old Beavers would. There have been toliet roll fights, shaving foam fights, and numerous games of knock door run. I really thought when I got put with a bunch of slightly older students that they’d have left all this behind, instead I’m left feeling old and boring. Hopefully over the next couple of weeks everyone will get caught up in assignments, I’ve already got plenty to be getting one with so I’m sure they’ll all catch up soon enough.