Are you having fun?
Having moved into my university house last Wednesday, today I can celebrate the “first week back,” milestone, something that is both depressing and slightly thrilling. Depressing, given I struggle to think what I’ve actually done to fill these days, aside from endless trips to the supermarket and the occasional glance round campus. The element of thrill comes from acknowledging how quickly this week has gone, which of course, when realised, only hints at just how much faster this year will feel like. Before I know it, Christmas will have been and gone, and then all of a sudden, graduation.
But enough whining about the challenges ahead. “Are you having fun?” was actually a message sent to me by my father on Sunday evening, most likely in response to the ever-increasing news stories of uni students being locked away in halls of residence, and more threats of a Christmas lockdown. Or it just could have been the typical “parent-trying-to-get-in-contact” situation, where he actually just wanted to know if I was enjoying myself.
Well, am I having fun? I suppose so. I’m seeing a lot of friends who I haven’t seen in a couple of months, and the independence of deciding what I want for dinner is still quite enticing (watch this space: in about two weeks I’ll declare that deciding what one wants for dinner is a terrible life sentence). But, at the same time, the aforementioned news stories and whispers of potential lockdowns take away the fun of returning to uni. Suddenly, all social events, even if they are just a socially distanced coffee, are just a case of “we should enjoy this whilst we can,” instead of simple recreation. Even better, should we even be doing this?
Campus itself is rather bleak, if I do say so myself. With a pretty heavy ban on most face-to-face events, and the increasing outbreaks of coronavirus, the usual rush is long gone. Even the geese seem less feisty.
Thankfully, the Warwick Student Cinema, a society which I am involved in, are able to open, seeing as we are a fully licenced venue. Given we are one of the few places offering in-person activities, the turnout for our first screening of the year, Pulp Fiction, was surprisingly high. I can’t tell if I am glad that we offer something for the freshers to do with their new flatmate bubble, or sad that this is one of the few opportunities to escape their corridors. Anyway, time for a shameless plug: with so many excellent films lined up for this semester, including Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, the Oscar award winning Parasite by Bong Joon-Ho, and the new adaptation of Emma, I really recommend checking out the Warwick Student Cinema, if like me, you are in need of something new in the daily routine.
Not to mention, with more details emerging about what modules I will study this year and my timetable, the actual studying aspect of my degree is slowly creeping back in… That old chestnut.
Am I having fun? I guess so, as much fun as I am entitled to. Regardless of what is going on, I suppose all students need to make the most of the year, be it your first or your last. There will always be ways to meet new people, learn new things and challenge yourself, which I suppose is what university is about, even if the setting is rather bleak. For now, we just need to keep trying to find the rainbow in the rain, even if that is the most horrific, physical-cringe inducing twaddle I have ever written on this cesspit of a blog.