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Mates, Flakes and Long Distance Lols.

Recently a friend told me a little anecdote which I really agreed with, and helped inspire this post on something I’ve been meaning to write about for a while. The story went (if I remember it correctly) that there are three types of friends in life:
1. Those that you are friends with due to a situation. You’ll be friends with them within the situation but the friendship doesn’t span outside of this.
2. Friends that you make within a situation and the friendship lasts around three years.
3. Friends you have for life.

I guess when I moved away to university I was naïve about the fact I genuinely wouldn’t see some people again, I was probably too caught up in the excitement of change to realise it at the time. However, moving to university has made me really appreciate those friends who you are genuinely close to and know will always be around, whether or not you talk every day. It seems sad to lose friends in the number 2 category, but as you grow up I guess you realise everybody changes and people lead very different lives; add your own cliché here about ‘living for the moment’ ha!

I’ve always been a firm believer that distance shouldn’t ruin a true friendship and university has certainly tested this theory! In a way it sorts the friends in the second category to the ones in the third. I’ve touched upon friends from home already, but it’s great when you don’t have to necessarily talk every day, but you know when you need them they’ll be there and when you do see each other it’s the same as it always was. There’s something amazing you can’t lose when you can look back at your ‘ugly phase’ and laugh together!

There’s also something amazing you can’t lose with your friends at uni, in a totally different way, you somehow end up becoming each other’s second family; particularly those who you live with. Or you may just become their carer, as with me and AJP:

Alastair Leaving

I was blissfully unaware that at the end of second year these rocks in my life would be ripped away. The demon of the dreaded placement year or study abroad or whatever other name you would like to call it. Many of my friends were now set to be flying off to various parts of the world, leaving the rest of us back here to continue to cry at how frigging depressing uni (and third year) is. The end of summer felt like one long emotional goodbye. In particular, my non-boyfriend whom I’ve mentioned before, AJP, was leaving for America. I’m not even ashamed to admit that on his official leaving night we both cried, no sorry bawled, in a club when I had to leave. Hilariously, we were actually going to see each other again the next day. Obviously I was just so sad that I was losing the best cockblock I’ve ever had? Upon the actual departing of AJP, we decided the best way to go was a chest bump in the middle of Liverpool Street Station.

Considering how big a part of my life AJP is, I was slightly scared of what London would hold for me without him. There have obviously been times when I’ve missed him a lot, but at the same time it’s made me appreciate the lols when we do speak. It’s that great time where you don’t have to put up with his smelly socks everyday but you still get to share many a lol. The internet is a wonderful thing, and Skype, Whatsapp, Facebook and obviously Snapchat have all been amazing to stay in touch with everyone. I am also a fan of good old snail mail and send out postcards when I actually remember to pass a postbox. My flatmate said that this sounded like a ‘Dear John…’ idea, but it is definitely less romantic than she was imagining, considering some of the funny postcards I’ve sent, the meaning of the lovely sentiments on them have had to be explained to the Americans! When I turned up to a pastoral type tutorial the other day, my tutor hilariously bluntly asked me ‘How are you coping without your other half?’. I’ve said this to lots of people who ask if I miss AJP, I feel like he’s still here but without actually seeing him.

Obviously life is different in London without AJP around, but it definitely isn’t all bad. I’m not crying in a cave all day, every day. I need to put a shout out in here to everyone at uni who make the times I do actually turn up to the depressing hell hole (yeah, I’m loving uni right now) actually bearable, my lovely flatmate and, of course, I don’t know where I’d be without my main galdem, who get me through life with some hilarious snapchats!

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To round off this rambling post, if you have long distance friends of any kind, then I guess my thoughts are that it makes you appreciate the time you have with them more, look how happy I am on Skype ha! On an even brighter note, think of all the amazing holidays where you don’t have to pay for a hotel!

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Thoughtful SJW, over and out x

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Ways To Survive Deadline Week.

Last week I became surgically attached to my swivel chair and barely left the house due to an impending deadline. I hand wrote this post to distract myself and I’ve only just felt okay with going anywhere near my laptop to post it.

In the middle of deadline chaos, I received a phone call from my mum, starting with a barrage of questions going something like this; ‘How’s it going? Have you slept? Have you eaten? Have you left the house? Have you even showered?!!’
My honest answer? ‘At least I’ve been eating well?’. Come on, we’ve all been there, in the dark depths of deadline, it’s currently 7pm, I’m still in my PJ’s, haven’t left the house for two days and I’m surrounded by bits of paper. In my breaks, i.e. when I take time to stare out the window, I’ve considered the best ways to make it through deadline week and here are my best tips:

1. Eat. Eat like a king.
Snack, take regular meal breaks, really, just eat until the point that you’ll obese by the time you hand in. Food is the cure for everything, my friends. My flatmate even came home earlier, asked me how I was and took one look at the pile of dishes and said ‘Well… at least you’ve been eating well!’.

2. Clean anything you can find.
For me, this only applies to specific areas of the house. My bedroom becomes a tip, but the kitchen becomes spotless. That aforementioned pile of dishes is no more. (Okay, maybe only until the next meal break).

3. Snapchat the shit out of boredom.
Work always drives me to be a bit mental and I’ve been told my snapchats have been of particular high quality during those moments, I’ll let you judge for yourself below. Also, even if you continually send ‘I want to throw myself off a cliff’ type snaps, your friends may get bored but it’s a good piece of entertainment for you.

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4. Ring your parents.
This might just apply to me, but this week each time I’ve rung either of my parents it has given me the lols / inspiration to help me continue.

Papa SJW, who goes for the inspiration angle:
‘You don’t half work hard when it comes down to it’ (he was so proud, what a cutie)
and my particular favourite: ‘I can see you becoming the next Richard Branson’.

Momma SJW, pure lols here: ‘Well maybe I’ll come visit you for Valentine’s Day, now your sweetheart has moved to New York’. HOW MANY TIMES, MUM! My best friend is not my boyfriend. He’s also not a particular fan of the female form…

5. Have a good supply of pj’s / comfy clothes
Nothing worse than running low on pj’s over deadline week. Live in them and be proud about it, after all, you’re working your tits off. Who has time to get dressed?

6. Position your desk near a window.
No, I’m not going all feng shui on you, the entertainment out my window has been incredible at getting me through work. Just the other day I witnessed a smooth drug deal involving throwing the packet from a bike into an awaiting open car window. Nothing says drama and excitement more than a drug deal!

7. Get a hilarious flatmate.
Last year deadline weeks involved ice cube fights indoors, 3AM pizza breaks and rants / crying about life. This year, my current flatmate entertains me with her quotes of the day, highlights have included:
My flatmate accidentally washing up her mug with a sponge I’d used to clean the toilet…
Her doubting what I was doing when I said I was shutting the door of my bedroom to do my typing… I’m not sure what else she suspected I was doing? (Any ideas please post them to me on the back of a postcard.)
‘It’s just a dog-eat-dog world when it comes to library books’.

8. Finally, get your landlord to knock on your door to tell you there’s been a break in.
Okay, so this probably can’t be staged, but yes, my deadline week consisted of this. DRAMAAAA. It’s quite a funny story really, we went from pooping our pants that someone was going to break in at any moment and frantically locking the windows, to finding out the suspect open skylight had just been opened by the fire precaution button in the corridor. Oopsy Daisy.

I’ve finished on a ridiculous number, but hey ho, hope it helped you procrastinate. Good luck to those of you out there also struggling through deadlines. You can do it.

SJW x