Thursday, 17 May 2012

One hell of a week.

I know what you're thinking...there must be a good reason for two blog entries in one week, especially since I've been getting into a groove of posting something roughly every fortnight.

There is, and that's what this entry is about. I've been a bit quiet on both Facebook and Twitter over the last few days because I've not wanted to talk about things, especially until I'd had a chance to discuss it with my parents and try to get my head around things.

In short, I won't be going to Graz in July. My work placement got cancelled on Tuesday night for a couple of reasons. As you can imagine, I'm far from happy at having my placement over there cancelled...but these things happen sometimes. From what I gather from university, I'm not the only person who has had a placement pulled from under their feet at relatively short notice.

It leaves me in quite the pickle though. Obviously, I was meant to be flying over there in about six and a half weeks and starting work in just over seven weeks. My flight was booked, I was ridiculously close to finding somewhere to live...everything was ready to go. It's just not meant to be though. Thankfully, I didn't put money down on a deposit for a flat in Austria so I don't lose that money and the flight...well, at the end of the day, it's annoying but money is just that, money. It won't destroy me. I doubt I'll get a refund on the flight (thanks Ryanair and your lack of giving a damn regarding cancellations) and if I'm incredibly lucky, I might be able to swap my flight for an alternative when I find out where I'm going, but I'm not holding my breath.

That's the big problem now...what do I do next year? Where do I go?

I spent most of yesterday (Wednesday) at uni in the hope of trying to sort something out. To his credit, Giles has been utterly fantastic about it, replying to my emails, talking my options through with me and from the sounds of it, he's going to do pretty much everything he can to try and find something for me. Mandy has been equally great since I've been sending her some things and she's been really quick to get those forms and bits of paperwork turned around and returned to me.

Having such a drastic changes of plans this late in the day isn't ideal at all. The most likely result will be that I end up studying in Germany next year at a university. While this wasn't my first option when thinking about the year abroad (and to be honest, it was the one thing I didn't really want to do), if that's what I end up doing...I'll do it, make the best of it and still have a great time over there.

There's a slim chance that I might be able to find a job with a bit of help from Giles. We'll have to play the waiting game. I'll be crossing my fingers, toes, eyes and everything else that I can cross in the hope of trying to get a job...but I'm alright with the concept of studying next year instead of working.

It's been about 48 hours since I found out about the change of circumstances for next year...and I'd like to think I've handled myself pretty well in this time. I pretty much lost it on Tuesday night (as you might imagine) and went out at night to try and figure things out. I didn't sleep much on Tuesday night which wasn't ideal, and when you consider the fact that I got about 3 hours sleep on Monday night after not getting to sleep until about 6am, it wasn't the greatest start to the week anyway.

Yesterday was a better day though. I felt more positive about take a page from Brody Stevens, it's all about positive energy. YES!

Big thanks to Hessie for being the shoulder to (not quite) cry on. She ended up with me sat in her kitchen on Tuesday night since I needed someone to talk to and she was the first person I thought of and the obvious choice. She's more than proved her weight in gold of over the last few days in helping me out and helping to talk me through things and offering me plenty of tea. Tea makes everything better. So does Flight of the Conchords.

I'm back at home for a few days and I've told the family now. I guess I've written this to let other people (that's you guys) know and to get everything written down. You can probably guess that I'm pretty annoyed at losing the placement in Graz, but these things happen. It's all part of life.

I'll bounce back from it and come back better than ever. Mark my words.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Better late than never...

I'm really slipping with the blog these days. What started off as being roughly weekly turned into a fortnightly occurrence and now...well, I just seem to write whenever I can. Maybe that's a good thing though. If I don't have the time that I used to have to sit down and write something once a week, then I'm clearly doing more with my life than I used to, and that *has* to be a good thing.

In terms of my actual life, there hasn't been a lot going on. It's exam season for uni students, which means it's essay season for me. That's one of the joys of being a second year language student whereby I don't have any exams to take (thank you Easter leavers!), but instead, I have a string of essays to complete and hand in for various modules. In a move of what I'd like to think is fairly clever time management, two of my essays...and most importantly, the essays that are due in this coming week, are already completed.

I wrote my Cinema essay a week or two ago, partially because it was the first deadline, but there's also the fact that I enjoy that module most and therefore I guess I felt I could write that essay without many major problems. I found a question where there was, at least in my mind, enough points of discussion and argument for me to sit down and write a 2,500 word essay. So that's great. Then over the last few days, I sat down and got to work with the essay for Shock of the New. To be honest, I didn't really like these questions that much as they all seemed to look at Weimar art in some way...and that wasn't something that I really enjoyed looking at. The same applied to last year with AGC when I didn't really care for the weeks we spent looking at art.

I sense a trend occurring in having to study German art and me not really caring for it.

Anyway, I spent a few days pottering around with it and not making too much progress, which is never good. Essentially, I'm a demon to myself. I know I am, so at least I'm aware of my love of self-procrastination (occasionally at my housemates' sacrifice as I go to annoy them for a while). But last night, everyone else went to bed fairly early and I found myself alone in the house. A good time to get some essay writing done. Fast forward two or three hours and the essay was as good as done, so I just had a brief conclusion to write this morning and then I was done.

All that remains now is the AGL project which is due a week on Monday (and an exam on Thursday, but that's Phonology and only serves to ruin my overall mark).

It's amazing how quickly time flies by though, whether it's with exams/essay deadlines, or life in general...I move to Austria in a shade over seven weeks. SEVEN weeks...that's nothing.

My flight is booked, and only served to allow me to witness daylight robbery. Maybe it's just me and the fact that I'm not a very frequent flier. In fact, I think this trip will be the fifth or sixth flight I've taken in my life...and it's DEFINITELY the first one I'm doing on my own. So I'm rather new to the joys of flying and booking flights. It just seems a little strange that a flight from Stansted to Graz costs less than £30 one way, but by the time they'd thrown various charges at me like £6 for using a Visa card and then another £35 for wanting a bag with enough stuff to last me my time over there, the cost of the flight has almost tripled to being just under £80.

Maybe I'm just naive...

I still don't have anywhere to live, which isn't a major concern at the moment since I still have time and I'm actively searching for somewhere. I'm just trying to be super organised so I don't forget anything and it's the one major thing that's bugging me. We're making progress though, so hopefully that'll be sorted within a week or two.

Outside of that though, I'm headed back home next weekend for a few days which will be good. I believe I've been promised chocolate cake which is utterly splendid, and if I'm lucky, I might get a game of cricket in provided the weather holds off and I can have a decent session in nets on Thursday. I'll be doing my exam on Thursday morning and then catching a train back home just after lunchtime and returning on Sunday evening for another PPV (well, Sky Sports) party for Over the Limit. Watching shows is always more fun when you're with a group of people, and we'll have that again next weekend. It's also the ADAC Zurich 24 Hours of Nurburgring which will be pretty awesome. The endurance race season is well and truly under way. I don't think I'll be working that race meeting...but stranger things have happened. Regardless, I plan on watching some of that race.

Whatever happens, the next few weeks are going to be pretty fun. The finish line for uni is in sight...let's break through and launch into summer!