She is back, after an unintended three month hiatus.
She has returned after recovering from a deadly bout of the notorious disease, Freshers’ Flu.
She has clicked ‘New Post’ on her WordPress dashboard after finally acquiring some basic, Sociology-For-Dummies understanding Durkheim’s analysis of modern and primitive societies, at 2:30am.
Not only is she back, but she is roaring on a new noble steed.
A bicycle which not only looks too shiny and Mission Impossible for its own good – even a baby could spot that this is a new bicycle and scream at its parents to steal it – but folds up like a cunning little ninja insect.
I confess that this Dahon is my first ever bike. As a kid I was deprived of the joy of cycling and I’m not sure why. Both my parents cycled regularly when they studied in China as cycling was pretty much the primary mode of transport at the time. My lack of cycling experience confused and annoyed me. Most kids start doing it pre-school; I started cycling aged 11.
This is my first bike 14 years too late.
I now offer some advice to new cyclists who wish the brave the streets of London. I am fortunate that my house is so close to my university. I can use a cycle route that is mostly composed of quiet side roads and few crazy main roads. The only ‘dangerous’ section is crossing Waterloo Bridge, which in general I have no problem with, unless it’s rush hour or super windy in which case I always feel like I’m going to get blown away into the Thames by either the force of nature or a huge red London double decker bus or both.
Before I cycled I first walked the route there and back. Then I started on the pedals and have loved it ever since! Cycling > TFL Public Transport! I also bought the most comfortable helmet in the cycle store, a khaki Bern one, and didn’t really think twice about it. Later I realised that it’s like a BMX style helmet that transforms any wearer into Robocop.
Fabulous. Now I feel and look like a superhuman.
I am into the third week of my second year in Law School. I am better settled and practised in studying properly and efficiently, but, despite having fewer commitments this year, I am still stubborn and hopeless at prioritising and looking after myself. My ideality is that I am superhuman and can do everything. The reality is that I can’t and will eventually collapse. The reality is forever in conflict with the ideality and as a result I get ill and can’t do anything at all save brewing tea and moping about my pathetic state.
Summary of Freshers’ Week (or re-Freshers’ in my case):
The photos below show the exhibition hall empty and tranquil, the mere preparatory stages of Freshers Fair. In reality being there was like getting on the Tube during morning and evening rush hour, a World Football Final, Boxing Day Sales and New Year’s Eve and never managing to pass beyond the doors of the carriage. You really really need to get to the Hot Chocolate Society Stall but you just can’t get past the people shoving leaflets in your nostrils and the lads of the Swimming Society parading around in their microscopic trunks.
- Being enthusiastic
The Law Freshers Party
I never realised how many lecture shout-outs (including ones at 8:45am, before 9am first-year lectures started; my God I thought I had escaped those for good) and Facebook and Twitter posts it took to promote and publicise a party. I never realised how easy it was to make an entire lecture theatre despise you.
And yet the KFC was so worth all that effort. Thanks to Mr Vice-President for buying it.
King’s College London Symphony Orchestra
I sat on an audition panel for the first time and had a great time listening to performances and picking the new KCLSO cohort for 2014-2015. It goes without saying that we have a very good orchestra this year and a fabulous line-up of exciting challenging repertoire which gets me super giddy all the time.
First concert: Prokofiev Symphony No. 7, Brahms Double Concerto, Bernstein’s West Side Story.
As ever I am ready to succumb to that perpetual spiral of dis-orientation, growing up, studying, sleep deprivation and anything else associated with university life. Best of luck to everyone embarking on a new academic year. As Immanuel Kant would say, in these words or a similar combination:
“We should act always under the practical postulate that our will is free.”
My interpretation of this is that you should wake up and feel like you can do whatever the hell you want. You are a superhuman, full stop.