A quick update…

Hello again! I realise it has been a ridiculous amount of time since my last post so I apologise. If truth be told, I’d started to find blogging a bit of a chore and so thought it best to just take a wee break from it all for a while.

It’s actually been almost two months since my last post and it’s safe to say a lot has happened in that time period. One of my uni friends Sazeeda came and visited for a girly weekend of shopping, I’ve been down to London to finally see City Uni and meet everyone on the course, I went to Warsaw for a wee city break with my pal Craig before heading back home for 5 days and then, last weekend, I was on an epic highland road trip from Glasgow to John O’Groats. Reading it all back, it’s a wonder I even had time to consider blogging!

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Me and Saz

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Warsaw

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Nottingham

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A few from the Roadtrip!

I’m now well and truly in the last three months of my project which is really quite upsetting actually! Over the past couple of months I’ve just become so attached to Glasgow and everyone I support and work with and the thought of leaving this all behind is not a pleasant one.  It doesn’t help that, in all honesty, I’m still dreading the thought of being a student for another two years. I’m at a point now where I want to be in a proper, grown-up job, earning money and looking at getting my first house and things – instead I’ll be living off very little for yet another couple of years and I’ll be almost 25 before I even graduate which is just plain scary! I’m still pretty confident that I’ll enjoy the course once I’m into the swing of things but Id be lying if I said I hadn’t considered the possibility of dropping out of uni (already!)

Life has quietened down a bit now (thankfully!) so I’ll mainly be spending the next few weeks just making the most of being in Glasgow (no trips planned as of yet, for a few weeks at least!). This Sunday is the Glasgow Mela in Kelvingrove Park so fingers crossed we get a nice day for it and I can enjoy a few ciders in the sunshine!

St. Patrick’s Day.

Sunday was St. Patrick’s Day so to celebrate, me and Bronagh (along with Dom and Paola) decided to head to an Irish Pub in town and celebrate in traditional style – aka with lots and lot of Guinness! We headed to Waxy O’Connor’s, which is a great pub right in the centre of town. The bar itself is absolutely huge – there are three different floors, numerous bars and far too many different flights of stairs to try and navigate. In all honesty, I was getting slightly lost before I’d even finished my first drink so by the end of the night I had no clue where I was heading!

Me and Bronagh started proceedings just after 12pm and I’m pretty pleased to say we managed to last almost a whole 12 hours! As you can imagine, the next day was not very pretty at all. Note to self: do not mix Guinness with Jagerbombs, it is fowl and it will get you drunk very quickly! However, I did have an absolutely cracking day/evening. There was live music, good conversation and then, later on, there was DJ to see you through the evening so then there was lots of crazy dancing – including a few slightly embarrassing attempts at an Irish Jig! Somehow, we also managed to gain a lot of rather cool Paddy’s Day merchandise including a Waxy O’Connor’s Rugby Shirt, a Guinness Hat and a wee green St. Patrick’s Day Rosette.

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Rockin’ the Guinness Hat

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Getting into the spirit of things…

It’s been far too long since I’ve had a proper good old session in the pub and I actually really did enjoy myself. It was also a great opportunity to get to know everyone that bit more, as everyone is much more chatty once they’ve had a pint or two (or four!) Fingers crossed we’ll all be able to go out again soon, although I think I’ll definitely be giving the Guinness a miss this time.

Home Bird.

As avid readers will know, this week I am currently back in Nottingham visiting all my friends and family. I’m about half way through my visit now and it’s safe to say that I have had an absolutely excellent time already. This weekend was particularly good as I finally got to spend some quality time with my parents and the rest of my extended family which made a nice change – I rarely get to see my stepsister and her family as they live up in Yorkshire.

I arrived home on Friday evening. The journey was alright but felt extremely long. Unfortunately my train was delayed before I even left Glasgow and by the time I arrived at the train station I’d be travelling for six hours. I have to admit, arriving home was really quite strange. It felt weird and, if I’m being totally honest, initially it didn’t feel like my home any more which upset me a little bit. However, once I’d got used to being back it all felt totally normal again and I was very pleased to find myself back in my beloved home-town!

To celebrate my arrival home, my parents took me out for breakfast on Saturday morning to a local pub before we all headed into Nottingham to get some last minute bits and bobs for my Nephew’s Christening. Even though I didn’t do anything particularly exciting, I had a really nice day just spending some time with my Mum and Brian and getting to see Nottingham city once again. On Saturday evening I also got to catch up with one of my oldest friends from primary school, Lauren. We haven’t had much opportunity to speak recently as we’ve both been so busy with various things so it was great to have a massive catch-up and hear everything that’s been going on in my absence!

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Slap-up Breakfast! 

Sunday morning, me and the ‘rents headed up to Harrogate for my Nephew’s Christening. I had a lovely day catching up with that side of the family and also I finally got to meet Finlay and have a wee cuddle 🙂 About time really I suppose! Overall I had a fantastic first weekend back at home and I have to say the week’s just got better and better as it’s gone on – but more about that in my next post!

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Me and Mother

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Cuddles

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Christening Cupcakes

The Fifth Month.

I have now been in Glasgow for exactly five months – yay! This month has in many ways been a weird one. There have been a lot of changes, most notably the fact that both Eujin and Rosie have now left. It’s really strange not having either of them about and I have to admit, I’m missing both of them loads – things just don’t quite feel the same up here any more and if I’m being totally honest, I’m just not really enjoying myself as much at the moment. Equally, while finding out I’d been accepted onto a postgraduate course at City University in London was undoubtedly the biggest high of the month (if not the whole year!), it’s really affected the way I’m viewing my placement. At first, it was a relief that I’d been accepted as it meant I could just massively throw myself into life in Scotland as a whole, without having to worry about the future. However, the more I research the course and flats and London life, the more I just want to be there now and I find myself sometimes wishing the next six months away which, of course, I know I shouldn’t do –  I can’t seem to help myself that the minute though!

I think the main problem is that I’m a bit bored of Glasgow now. While there’s still so much for me to see and do, in the city and beyond, I’m starting to get a wee bit fed-up. I’m really really missing home at the moment and especially spending time with all my friends, both back in Nottingham and the Lancaster lot. Thankfully, I’m heading to Lancaster next Friday (SO EXCITED!) and then I have a ten-day holiday on the 1st March when I’m finally getting to head home. I actually can’t wait and I’m hoping it’ll do me the world of good and I can come back to Glasgow all refreshed and with a much more positive attitude. However, I am slightly concerned that I just won’t want to head back to Scotland at all but, fingers crossed, it won’t get quite that bad – my mum will force me on the train anyway whether I want to go or not!

In other news, last week I started volunteering at a new charity shop on Byres Road, in the West End of the city. I happened to see that they needed volunteers and, having previously worked in retail for five years and having volunteered in an Oxfam shop, I decided to give it a go – it’ll help keep me busy and I’ll get to meet some new people hopefully. Unfortunately, I never did hear back from the Communication Support Volunteer role I mentioned in a previous post but not to worry, I’m sure this will be good in a different way!

Also, yesterday I attended a special CSV workshop in Edinburgh which was actually really good. Obviously, I never pass up the chance for a free trip to my favourite city and I had a great day. I got to meet some of the new CSV volunteers who have just arrived in Scotland, as well as meeting a few others that I haven’t had chance to see previously because they are based up in Edinburgh. All the newbies seem really nice, if not maybe a little shy at the moment, but I’m hoping that with time (and alcohol) that will pass and we can arrange some more frequent meet-ups.

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The month ahead looks great, mainly because I’ll spend most of it either at home or at Lancaster (which is practically my second home!). There’s a lot of good stuff planned – it’s my Nephew’s Christening at the beginning of March and Mother’s Day as well so I’ll get to spend lots of quality time with my family which is always good really. Plus I have lots of trips and meals out with my friends planned as well as a few cheeky nights out in Lancaster for me to look forward to – now all I have to do is put some plans in place for Glasgow and I’ll be laughing!

London Calling.

Last night I got some of the best news I had in a while – I’ve been an offered a place on the PGDip/ MSc Speech and Language Therapy Course at City University, which means I’ll be moving to London at the beginning of September!! AHH. I am literally so excited, although the news still hasn’t properly sunk in. I can’t actually believe that in just 7 months I’ll be living down in London of all places. I’m a little bit apprehensive because the cost of living down South is just ridiculous but it’s just such a good opportunity I just can’t say no. I’ve always wanted to live in London so the fact that I’m actually getting chance to do so is just insane!

The course itself sounds really good. It’ll take two years to achieve my postgraduate diploma and after that I’ll be a fully qualified speech and language therapist. Additionally, I can choose to stay on for another 6-12 months and complete a research project and then obtain the full MSc qualification, although I’ll have to pay additional fees so I think, for now at least, I’ll stick with just the diploma and then see if I can maybe head back to uni a few years down the line to get my masters qualification. That’s obviously a very very long way from now though so I suppose we’ll see how things develop first!

Now that I actually have a plan I just feel so much happier and a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I admit that I was actually really starting to panic about life – I received a rejection from Reading University earlier in the day so it was a welcome change to finally have some good news. I’m now free to just enjoy the rest of my time up here without having to worry about what the future holds or being in some sort of weird limbo. I think this definitely calls for a few celebratory drinks tonight 🙂

Under Pressure.

My Newcastle interview is on Monday and it’s safe to say that I’m starting to feel the pressure ever so slightly. I’m not nervous for the interview as such, I’m actually more nervous about the wait afterwards and the possibility of rejection. Even though I still have four other universities to hear from, this feels like my last chance and it’s as if all my proverbial eggs are pretty much in the one basket. There are only 18 places on the Newcastle course so it’s really quite competitive and I’d love to be offered a place – the course sounds fantastic and Newcastle is a city I can most definitely see myself living in for the next two years!

Probably the most pressurising thing though is the weight of everyone else’s expectations. My friends, family and colleagues have all been absolutely lovely and said some really positive and complementary things to me which is great but also, for some reason, adds on a whole load of added pressure. People think I’ll do well or I’ll get onto the course and while that’s a massive confidence boost, it feels like everyone expects me to be successful and that for me just makes things ten times more intense. In theory, this is probably the easier bit for me – I’ve always said if I can get my foot in the door and get myself an interview, I should be alright as I’m pretty confident and I come across much better in person than I do on paper. However, that doesn’t make this any less nerve-racking.

In a strange way though, I’m a lot calmer than I thought I would be. By now, I expected myself to be fully freaking out and just generally having a bit of a panic. Instead, it’s almost as if I’ve managed to convince myself that this is a practice run for next year and I’m not actually going to get a place but I may as well just go in there and give it a shot on the off-chance. In a way it doesn’t feel quite right, not just yet, almost as if I do actually need another year of practical work  experience and then I’ll be fully ready to do the course and do it properly. Obviously, I’d love to get a place this year but I’d understand why if not and I’m slowly accepting the idea that a year back at home, in another related job could be good for me – if worst came to worst, at least I’d be able to afford a holiday next year! Fingers crossed though that it doesn’t come to that and I get to spend the next two years of my life in the North-East, being an extra on Geordie Shore!