Or, in factorial notation: 24329***** *** *** = 1x2x3x4x…x18x19x20 = 20!
Which, in a very roundabout way, is me announcing that Saturday 1st October was my 20th birthday. It also happens to be the first day of arrivals’ weekend for campus accommodation, which means lots of confused new people and oodles of free stuff.
Sometime in August, I got asked if I would be up for giving a speech to the new freshers’ parents. Naturally, I signed myself up, intending to spend some time prepping a suitably formal and exceedingly reserved speech, as is the style for such an occasion. I did have some sort of idea that I wanted to throw a rubber duck into the audience, but my friends vetoed that on health and safety grounds. Then I got distracted photoshopping my friends into things, and didn’t think much more of it.
So, this morning, I woke up, still having not written a speech. I cobbled together a few things – I knew that I wanted to talk about my experience of Warwick, and specifically that you don’t have to be the same as everyone else to fit in. I tried to make it lighthearted – I’ve never been good at stuffy formal things.
I ended up ad-libbing quite a lot on stage, and responding to the audience. At one point, I couldn’t read my handwriting. I’m sure there’ll be a video somewhere at some point – I’ll blog about it when it shows up. Turns out, it was streamed onto the big screen on the Piazza – didn’t realise this until I ran into Sophie Hobbs from the University Challenge team, and she told me she’d heard me mention knowing the UC lot.
For the rest of the day, I spoke to a lot of parents and new students about my experiences as a pretty awkward fresher who isn’t some sort of academic machine. I also infiltrated the freshers’ fair, and picked up as many freebies as I could lay my hands on. I plan to do the same again tomorrow – I didn’t go to the freshers’ fair last year! I have managed to get my fair share of peri-peri sauce and carrier bags today, though.
After all that, I went to the pub for a QuizSoc exec meeting, to catch up on what we’re planning to do over the next few weeks – we’ve got a lot of freshers-specific events alongside our usual fare! I’ll blog about it more soon – but it should be great fun.