In the grand scheme of my BA university degree, last Thursday – Sunday represented the true ‘end’, leaving only graduation left. That is why we (my friends and I) wanted to make sure we had the greatest time we could so that we could leave with a bang. Starting on Thursday (2nd May) I started my 3 day binge session of acting like a fool, drinking, and in general doing activities that stir up the emotions about leaving it all behind. So, my plan for this blog post is to document what happened whilst also taking you on a journey culminating in some hopefully insightful round up of how to make the last moments (of anything) count.
On Thursday we had our BBQ with our tutor, or rather ex-tutor. It was a strange experience. It was just the idea of being in a house belonging to my tutor with almost my whole film group having a farewell BBQ. Most of us had known each other since the beginning of Uni, and were now preparing ourselves to confront the thought of not seeing each other day after day. On the way to my tutors house we walked along a nature trail, where the river wound around alongside the path providing a natural sort of invitation to daydream. We walked at a pace laughing, singing a little bit and switching between realisation and… just avoiding that realisation as much as possible. After all there’s nothing worse than wasting a memory on worrying that such memories wont exist anymore. The BBQ went well, the food was delicious and in large quantity, so we didn’t exactly go hungry, the conversation wasn’t as nostalgic as I expected, it was more just a bit of fun. We posed little question-games, getting to know parts that we might not have already asked about, silly questions y’know? It was strangely satisfying, and spurned that all-too-rare epiphany that each person we see has this first person perspective we do and will ultimately go on to do similar or largely different things to us. Madness, but a welcome awakening. We continued the day by going to the pub and getting as mortaled as possible, I couldn’t stay long because I had to meet a friend but it was the perfect farewell to a long term module. Wivenhoe (where we had the BBQ) also has this quality, it’s a little seaside village similar to that of the Hot Fuzz town and it’s simplicity and size makes for the perfect, safe encounter of university finality haha.
Nevertheless there were still 2 more days to go! ‘The End’ is a student run meet up of all years on campus, where we basically get drunk and chill along to music. Large speakers are brought out, student djs/musicians take to the stage to entertain and all in all it’s a hilarious day. This year was probably my best, even though the sun wasn’t out and it wasn’t as busy as it used to be, there was one thing that seemed to improve it – I didn’t plan anything. We got there, found a place to chill and sat down, we luckily placed ourselves next to a group with a loud speaker blaring out summer tunes. It was a very chilled out start, it was more about enjoying the feeling of doing nothing, and seeing the Uni as something other than just work-oriented. The rest of the night started to get a bit bigger, a substantial amount more drink was consumed. There’s not a huge amount to be said about The End, it’s a funny, organised mess. That’s the best way to explain it, it’s one of the best nights out I’ve had, and it’s full of embarrassment, idiocy and summery vibes.
Lastly came probably my favourite night of my three years at University: Summer Ball. Now, my first year had been fun but I was too drunk to remember much. My second year I was sober and working and it was pretty fun, this year however, I wasn’t going to be working and we just weren’t sure what to expect. Yet we again didn’t plan too much, we had pre-drinks at our house, watching a compilation of videos taken over the past year – an odd but wonderful experience. Then after a little while we set out. I couldn’t help but feel as if everything was impossibly false, we weren’t being false, but it felt as if
everything wasn’t happening. It felt as if I was stuck in some kind of lucid dream, surely these three years weren’t coming to an end already? But they were, and they are. I don’t want this to get longer than my usual posts, so I’ll be as brief as I can. We got there, feeling fresh and cool, there were more rides and despite having been here before it still felt new. We went straight onto The Ferris Wheel and it was probably the best thing to start on, it was the first time I had ever seen the entire Uni from such a height. As I sat on The Ferris Wheel at the last big event pre-graduation, I was overlooking the entirety of the uni painted by an orange lit sky and feeling so incredibly overwhelmed. We went on to do practically everything, I went to see Nina Nesbitt ( a wonderful singer I’d been listening to practically since I was 16/17) I was nervous and excited and even got to meet her and take a picture with her. Her set was beautiful and full of passion and everything you would expect from Nina and to meet her afterwards was just that extra bonus. That alone told me the rest of the night would be great. Which it was, including a long stint in a super hyped grime tent, a funny and ‘lit’ time in Majestics tent (a DJ that always makes a good night) some time in the ‘Secret Garden’, drunken bouncy castle games and a shite tonne of other stuff.
It’s probably taken me too long to get here, and if you are at this point, I thank you. You see, I’ve always enjoyed the blog scene because there’s always something about reading someone elses story of a night, or a time that generally would seem so normal but when read from an outsider perspective becomes a tale of inspiration and hope. That’s what I was trying to show with this post. So much of what we do is taken for granted, the little times we spend talking to people we’ve never met before, the moment you shake the hand of a DJ you’re enjoying but again have never met before. My three days of madness (BBQ, The End and Summer Ball) were full of these moments, but more than anything made me remember the smaller things I had missed over the past three years. It’s great because now I know to look out for these things even more than I did before. Now, I’m in that strange limbo moment between finishing uni and actually graduating there’s the typical blues and emotions that force me to think of them now. But I wish I had indeed enjoyed them just a little more and understood their significance. If you’re starting Uni now, or if you’re older and feel like your life is just a job, or lacking anything interesting, open your eyes just a bit more. There’s a million and one exceptional moments in our lives that we always miss and that’s such a shame. I’ve spent a lot of my life as a recluse, a shy and quiet boy, full of emotion and (when i was younger) anger. I didn’t understand myself, my identity, my culture, my social position, let alone the rest of life, the rest of the things I should have embraced. University has been my awakening, and as much as I’d wished I’d grabbed onto the significance of certain things, I realise regretting those moments will only make the current ones disappear again.
Let me know if you enjoyed this and if you want to see more of this style! Thanks!