Congratulations! We’ve almost made it to the end of Week 3, which is almost halfway to reading week! I know it seems early to already be counting down the days until my “half” week off (sadly Russian doesn’t let me have a reading week), and by the time it gets to Week 3, Term 2, I will be crying about how quickly the year is going, but for now, I can’t wait for a break. I won’t lie, readjusting from year abroad life is tough, and the start of this term has hit me like a brick. 

When you’re being reminded by technology that this time last year you were halfway around the world with your mum, taking in the views of Bogotá and drinking the best juice in the world… cries… take me back!

I imagine a big portion of my term 1 blues have come from the fact that it seems to have rained every day since I moved in. The novelty of constantly arriving for lectures damp, and avoiding the walk to Tesco wore off by week 1, and now I am seriously looking forward to a week of sunshine and crisp autumn chills. Although, last week in between the storms we were treated to a lovely rainbow over Lakeside…

Before it shortly started to rain again

Living in Lakeside has proved to be a good decision, as the 10-minute walk to campus is making everything that little bit easier, especially when everyone else in your classes is battling the U1 at 7 am to make it to 9 am’s.  However, adjusting back to proper university life after a year of “non-assessed” modules has also hit me hard. I think I thought coming back to Warwick after a year of speaking my languages would be far smoother a transition than reality; after all, getting really confident and becoming more mature that was the reason I went abroad in my second year?? Maybe it’s just the rain, but I have felt like I’ve been drowning since week 1, never quite fully caught up on work, and always needing to catch my breath, and then it dawns on me – this is only week 3, what is it going to be like in week 7 or 8?!? The variety of all my modules is also proving heavy, with my brain constantly changing between four languages; trying to debate the intricacies and irregularities of Don Quixote; discuss the stereotypes of modern Italian culture; debate whether the gloucester cheese roll should be protected by UNESCO in Spanish, and learn a thousand new words in Russian… 

And breathe.

The autumn leaves of Lakeside soothing me

The worst was when last week I was hit by a post-Pop! hangover, which turned into freshers flu by the end of the day, meaning I barely left my room until Monday. Combined, with the stress of pouring a whole mug of tea over my flatmate’s Macbook on the Sunday night. Once again, sorry Shannon! (Don’t worry, she has insurance, her new laptop will be arriving this weekend)

But what is Warwick without some midweek mayhemAlways worthy of a hangover

However, I think I’m back on track. As a self-confessed control freak, who is never without my (handwritten) diary, time management is my new best friend, and I am doing my best to try and get everything I need to do done by the end of the day. Given I have the luxury of not having to spend almost two hours every day on the bus, and the fact that I can run home in between lectures to have some lunch and change my books, I don’t really much excuse, do I?

Meaning sometimes I do come home and collapse into bed, resembling something like my now six-month-old puppy (six months! They grow up so fast)

That’s not to say I’ve become a complete workaholic robot since my recovery from freshers flu; after all, what is the university experience without some good old fashioned procrastination? In fact, Wednesday saw me take the whole day off and spend some quality time with my mum who came to visit, meaning I finally, after studying here since 2017, went to Warwick Castle.

And despite the crippling price for tickets and parking- £54 for the two of us, I am smiling

Whilst the price was extortionate, it was certainly well done, and worth a visit, even if my mum will need to remortgage her house to buy tickets again. Spending a wonderfully bright, crisp Autumn afternoon (without any rain!) wondering through the Great Hall, drinking tea in the Peacock Garden and climbing the towers made for a nice break from endless piles of grammar and course reading.

The peacock gardens- because why not?

I probably will never go again, but it was a lovely day out. And a reminder that it is good to escape your studies, even when it feels like you’re drowning in work and cannot find the surface. 

Therefore, keep pushing on, and enjoying some time off- it will be reading week before we know it!

Catherine x