It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…
Christmas is a funny season with no-one seeming to be able to agree when it actually starts. You can start seeing Christmas stuff in the shops as early as August but the shops start selling Christmas fully once Halloween is over. So does Christmas start on the 1st November? Or do you have to wait till the 1st December for Christmas to truly start? Whatever your view on when the decorations should go up, that tends to go a bit wonky when at Uni.
In my view Christmas should start to be celebrated in December, when Advent begins. However, if we hold true to that at Uni, you have 1 week of term to cram in all of the Christmas themed things that you want to do with your friends.
Got 5 different friend groups? That’s a Christmas meal everyday.
Want lots of decorations? You’ll have to be quick to get them up so that it’s worth it before you need to take them down again.
Want to go to the Christmas markets? When is everyone actually free?
So, maybe at Uni it’s ok to start a little earlier.
But what does Christmas actually look like at Uni?
In my experience, it entails cheap Christmas decorations thrown together to be put up for the last 2 weeks of term, several Christmas meals (whether you cook them yourselves or go out for them) and, for our cohort in Computer Science at least, a few people turning up to lectures wearing Santa hats.
Christmas at Uni is what you make it.
However, making Christmas happen at Uni can be a bit of hard work.
Firstly, whenever you think Christmas should start, you need to think about it earlier than that. The end of term comes with lots of deadlines and other activities so if you want to have a Christmas party or cook a meal, or anything else for that matter, you need to organise the date and plans well in advance to make sure that everyone can make it. My house ran into this problem this year and so will have a “Christmas celebration” when we get back in January (hopefully).
Another thing to note is that everyone goes home at different times so you need to work your plans around peoples departure dates (and remember to work out your own if you’re going home).
Christmas shopping also seems more difficult at Uni. November feels way too early but if you don’t do it in November, it’s suddenly the 15th December and it’s time to start panicking a little bit. So, even if it feels really early, start making a plan in early November.
Finally, if you’re not going home for Christmas, make a plan. Campus gets very quiet over the Christmas holidays so plan some things to do in the local area. Birmingham, Coventry and Leamington all have Christmas markets (I believe) and I’m sure there are lots of other places fairly nearby that you could explore. If you do know other people who are staying in the area over Christmas, make plans with them to make the holidays seem that little bit less lonely. And finally, have something to look forward to on Christmas day, whether that’s a day of watching movies curled up with your duvet, volunteering or anything else to make the day an enjoyable one.