As mentioned in my previous post, I moved out of my student halls flat and into my own house for the second year of uni. I’m living with Bex still, but also with 4 other boys who we were friends with last year (fun). Currently, only myself, Bex and Sam have moved in, Aidan is on holiday with his girlfriend, and Aaron and James are moving in some time this week (not sure when); it’s weird having a house this big just between the 3 of us at the minute but I’m sure that will change soon! My room is upstairs which means I get a good view over the road we live beside and the trees (we live next to a really big park so we get squirrels around the house) – it will look lush when it snows! As I did in my previous post, I gave the house its pros and cons, so I will do that again:
- We have a dishwasher (wow) and washer-dryer machine (double wow) included in our rent payments!
- Having an actual house is amazing since it feels like your own space and it’s so much more adult-y.
- We live down the road from the gym; which is opposite McDonalds, so that’s counter-productive.
- Living further away from clubs and shops saves me money :).
- We live up a massive hill…pain.
- Deliveroo now doesn’t deliver to our post-code :(.
- It’s a trek into town for shopping and nights out.
- I don’t live near my campus anymore so that’s also a trek.
- I really miss our other flatmates and friends from our previous flat :(.
Laying with my cat, Nellie, and watching travel vlogs of China. That’s all I’ve been doing today. Once I get my head into something, I’m stuck – and I’m currently stuck on China. The magnificent Asian country has been on my mind for years now and as I enter my 20’s it is more prevalent than ever. I think my love of China spawned from when I was younger and I constantly played DK’s ‘Become A World Explorer‘ that I got free in a cereal box. The game gave you clues on where to find notes around the world by exploring landmarks and countries – China was always one of my favourites, marked by the Great Wall, Pagodas and of course, Pandas. Many aspects of Chinese culture have fascinated me, the gorgeous art (some of which I’ve seen in Prague’s National Gallery) and architecture, the eastern beliefs, and their traditions. Of course, I’m a huge fan of Chinese cuisine (give me all the crispy chilli beef any day of the week) but tasting it from a streetfood stand in downtown Beijing is something that I really have to do. Oh and did I mention, Pandas have been my favourite animal since I can remember.
I’ve been sat doing my normal organised planning (even though I’m going nowhere as of yet) looking at flights, trains and Airbnbs for the cities I’d be most interested in visiting: Beijing, Xi’an, Chengdu, Zhangjiajie and Shanghai. The Great Wall is obviously somewhere I dream of going, but I’ve always wanted to explore many other tourist attractions that the country has to offer: the Terracotta Warriors at the ancient capital of Xi’an, Chengdu Panda Research Base where you can pay extra to hold a Panda, the Tianzi Mountains at Zhangjiajie (which I can now spell without looking it up, look at me go) that inspired James Cameron’s movie Avatar. My favourite videos that I’ve been watching are the series of vlogs by Greenoid Adventure, a British lady named Sara who travels South East Asia with her son Ste. Their daily China vlogs give a refreshingly realistic look at what life’s like as a Westerner understanding Eastern cities (she nearly always tells the viewer the prices of everything which is incredibly helpful when you’re planning trips).
We’ll see if I get to China!
Wednesday 19th July 2017, 9:19am, I sit here in my disturbingly tidy room in my beloved first home in Sheffield, R3, where I’ve created so many memories with so many lifelong friends. Even though I am the last of the four of us to leave this flat, it still feels like our flat. Once I’ve gone, it isn’t our home anymore. Since the beginning of June, myself and Bex have had two Malaysian students live with us and fill the two bedrooms at the end of the hall left by our amazing boys – it’s never felt quite right (they never speak a word to us anyway). I’m the only one still left in Sheffield since Saturday and I’ve filled my days with packing and watching Death Note with no human contact; I’m going insane. Although I attach feelings of anxiety and sadness with my home town of Norwich, I can’t wait to go home as I’m getting a cat – Nelson – on Friday!
I will miss my little flat and living beside so many shops, bars, clubs and restaurants but it’ll be nice (for me and my bank account) to live a slight bit further out of the city centre where it’ll be quieter; we’re only moving from an S1 to an S2 postcode so we’re not too far away!
Things I won’t miss about living in this flat however are:
- The alley that my window looks over where the brewery insist on hurtling bins and emptying stupid amounts of glass bottles at unearthly hours (it kept me up at 3am then woke me up at 6:00am this morning…not happy).
- The pathetic management that we have here. They claim to give us the best security yet anyone can just walk in without ID, and the gates don’t even work half the time. We’ve also had 3 mice living in our kitchen since we moved in, 2 of them are dead but one is definitely alive…I look forward to having a long chat with pest control about this.
- Living beside clubs can be a negative as you get all of the screaming every night from midnight – 3am. Being beside the alley is more disturbing as I can often hear people having sex or peeing against my wall…
Bye R3! Thanks for putting up with the 4am banana fights, the ridiculous amount of Bucks Fizz that we spilt on the floor at Christmas, Matt throwing chicken everywhere when he was drunk, Ewan throwing up black in freshers, Bex launching Twinkies at the wall in rage, and myself for injuring every part of my body on every given surface. Good luck to its next tenants, who will love it nowhere as much as we did.
As my first year of University draws to a close (thank god), I thought I’d share my top tips from what I’ve learnt as being a newbie Student:
- Start looking as early as you can. Going on lots of open days and reading up about the variations of courses is the best way that I can advise choosing where to go. When you arrive somewhere, you’ll know straight away if you want to live there or not.
- Apply for accommodation early!
- When you know which flat you’ve been allocated, post it in the Facebook group for your accommodation and find your flatmates ASAP – talk to these people!! You’ll be living with them for a year, maybe more!
- Figure out who is bringing what for the kitchen, we ended up with 8 bottles of fairy liquid, 4 sets of pans and loads of tuppawares.
- Apply for student finance as soon as possible so you don’t forget it and you get it out of the way – another thing ticked.
This weekend, my parents came up from Norwich to visit me in Sheffield and we took the day-trip to Matlock Bath in Derbyshire to visit the Heights of Abraham (which were closed when my parents last came to visit). The guided tours around the underground caverns were amazing!! Our guides turned off all of the lights at certain points so we could get an idea of how dark it was for the miners when they were only guided by candlelight – it’s very hard to see, let me tell you that. Even though I only live an hour away from Matlock, it’s hard to believe that I’ve never been here or expected to see views like this (especially as I come from Norwich which is basically the flattest place in England). Word of warning, you get a leg and back ache after visiting here because you have to duck down in the caves and walk up a lot of hills!
As I sit here in bed at 3:19pm after oversleeping and missing todays lecture, I had a sort-of epiphany. I was casually scrolling down Facebook when I saw a video montage of this man who’d visited 50 countries at the age of 19. It just made me think, there’s so much out there that I want to see and I can get there if I go the right way about it.
I’ve come to the realisation that I have enough money leftover from my student loan in April that I can go Interrail-ing next summer – something I wanted to do last summer but didn’t get round to doing. Going on the Interrail would allow me to tick off many of those countries I’ve always wanted to go to; especially Vienna in Austria! I’m approaching my 19th birthday (in 10 days!) and I’ve visited 10 countries in my youth which puts me at the halfway position. This gives me confidence that I can do this. Dublin with my housemates is already in the pipeline so hopefully Ireland will be on this list!
Countries I have visited:
- The Netherlands
Countries I endeavour to visit (realistically):
Ireland (April 2017)
Austria (June 2017)
Slovenia (June 2017)
Croatia (June 2017)
Hungary (June 2017)
Italy (June 2017)
Czech Republic (June 2017)
Whilst stressing over all my bloody A2 exams (that’s the second year of A-Levels…y’know, those important ones that determine whether you get into University), I found some useful resources to revise Psychology on which helped me a lot and will most likely help you too!
These websites have either downloadable pre-written notes, breakdowns and/or model answers.
Plus these videos are amazing in helping to understand Modules!
Good luck on your exams and I hope this helped!
Eugh it’s that time of the year again, exams month. I feel like my eyes are burning out of my head and my brain is on fire. I’m scoffing Ben & Jerrys like the world’s going to end and drinking orange juice like it’s going out of fashion. I felt like I had to upload some form of post to shove in my lifestyle tab (hint hint click that tab above) since I have hardly anything on there! My first Psychology exam is in 5 days and I’m terrified then my other 5 exams follow quickly after and I don’t feel prepared for them at all:( The next 3 months are so exciting and I can’t wait to get there – Fuerteventura, V Festival, Rhodes then finally moving to Sheffield…and maybe getting my first tattoo AGH. I just want everything to be over and done with so I can be in Sheffield with all my lovely friends that I just made.
Hope everyone else who’s got exams feels better than I do!
We did it! After a few weeks of mayhem buying WAY TOO MANY multi-packs of Walkers crisps and entering codes at midnight, myself and Scott won a free holiday to Corfu! Here’s how it works: Walkers (a UK crisps company) are giving away 20,000 holidays in partnership with last minute.com, there is a code on the reverse of all special packs which can be entered onto your account on the website- each code reveals a letter and you have to spell out the location of one of the destinations e.g. New York, Barcelona, Phuket and many more! After looking into the Spell & Go hashtag on Twitter, it became evident that getting C, K and D was rare…and we had a C sitting in our dashboard! All of the short-haul holidays have a C or D in their title, and the long-hauls have a K- meaning that we pretty much had it in the bag once we’d got the C!
We nervously put in our 5 codes per day waiting for the final F that we needed for Corfu, it just wasn’t happening! This kind man on Twitter offered to swap his F with us for one of our spare letters and I couldn’t say no (this all occurred whilst I was at work). Over the power of the internet, he sent me the swap code and we finally had the F in our hands! Seeing the ‘Congratulations! You’ve won a holiday to Corfu!’ made me physically scream and my Supervisor had to come and check if I was ok! We haven’t booked the holiday yet since we’re still unsure on dates but myself, Scott, Spencer and Tara will be off to Corfu in Summer; the prize includes round trip flights and a 7 night stay in a 4* hotel for 4.
If anyone is interested in the competition, it’s running until the end of July!
Good luck! x
In the Riverside area of Norwich is Chiquito, the cheap and cheerful Mexican Cantina. After only visiting a few times, I can safely say that it’s one of my fave restaurants around.
Following an upgrade to their menu, this ‘Street Food’ tapas style selection was created. Myself and Tara went for mini quesadillas, mini tacos, halloumi bites, epinadas and a mini burrito…YUM. Also, the lighting on the tables is top notch and very aesthetic for instagrams.
10/10 Hannah x