Reflections of a Second Year in Denial

Two years in and still leaving everything to the last minute, maybe next year things will look up (probably not)

| UPDATED Cambridge Cambridge University Fresher regrets second year Tab university

Halfway hall approaches. I have regressed.

Reflection of my time at university came after the alarming realisation that I have been avoiding the careers service like the plague, whilst many of my peers have secured swanky internships at the Bank of Adulthood. The height of sophistication on my CV is still the stint I did during the Christmas holidays at TK Maxx. My sleeping pattern and working routine last term made someone actually gasp.

With that in mind, a note of advice to my drunk-eyed fresher self:

One-night stands are all passion and excitement until you rock up at Sidgwick for a 9am in a mini dress, slightly tipsy and giggling at the lecturer’s monotone, objectively unfunny quips. The excitement of waking up in a central college and being within walking distance to a lecture is something only us Homertonians and Girtonians will understand. The struggles of CB2 are real. Was this particular textbook overview of Literacy and Education in Early Modern England worth your shambolic appearance at the Seeley? Absolutely Not. Head for the taxi rank, go back to college and speed along your recovery process.


Whilst I have been, so to speak, ‘birded off’, my venture to declare bankruptcy at the hands of Kuda, Cambridge is still very much apparent.

‘Spontaneous nights are always the best’ isn’t always the truth. The phrase was invented by someone who wanted me to fail in every aspect of life. Elbows deep into my second book a night before an essay deadline, and the smell of vodka with the dreaded ‘it will be a good night’ has me in a rather questionable urban outfitters number – it’s not my style but it fits in with the Fez vibe – and heading for town.

In this week’s news, I had to visit the bank and explain to them why I have lost my bankcard for the fifth time.

Do I know these people?

With regards to work, the common trope of Cambridge – that as your degree progresses, your note taking improves – is dramatically overstated. My notes are, in short, the whole book in bullet point form; I’m pretty sure my summarisation is longer than the chapter itself. The tendency I have to panic about last minute work has gotten worse; it will almost certainly be my defining legacy as a history student.

A love letter to me, from me.

Yet the ironic optimism of the procrastinator’s charter – ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ – has left me feeling distinctly positive about the second half of my degree. A new academic week in Cambridge has the ability to reset your attitude, mindset and work ethic.

I may not have it all figured out, but there isn’t a one size fits all for university.