How to make the most of the Christmas holiday

We can see the light at the end of the tunnel

cambridge freshers Cambridge University cantab. michaelmas Christmas the tab

We made it everyone.

It’s the last week of term. We’re finishing up last supervisions, packing up all our rubbish for the long journey home and  celebrating at end of term bops. Five long weeks lie ahead of you with no more lectures or essays. By now you should have a fairly severe case of Stockholm Syndrome, so you’re probably asking yourself ‘However will I fill all that time without the distraction of my supervisors constantly tearing apart my fragile sense of self-worth?’ Fear not friends, for the final time, I am here with all the answers.

The face of wisdom

DON’T spend all your time working

Look, your DOS is going to tell you to spend the break chained to a desk revising all the things you’ve forgotten you learned in the first place, I am telling you that’s a terrible idea. Knowing slightly more than everyone else about Proto-Indo-European verb morphology is not worth sacrificing your precious, precious downtime for. Sure, do a bit of work to keep your head above water but I would advise focusing on catching up on sleeping, faffing about on the internet and finally watching the Gilmore Girls revival.

Watching a fictional character study totally counts as studying

DO spend quality time with your home friends

Obviously all the people you’ve met in your first term are you besties 5ever (unless they’re not), but it’s always good to get back to the people who liked you back in year 9 when you got that ill-advised bob and thought My Chemical Romance really got you. Gather together, hold each other after your long time apart and trade war stories of your first term at uni. They can listen in abject horror as you tell them about your work schedule and all seven of the mental breakdowns you’ve had and you can listen enviously as they talk about having social lives and only having to write two essays a term. However try not to be too self-pitying, if your friends are anything like mine they’ll tell you to shut up and be more grateful that you get to live in a castle.

My life is so har- YOU LIVE IN A CASTLE

DON’T be afraid to get festive

The lights are up, ugly jumpers are everywhere and Mariah is back in the charts, so let’s embrace the festive season. Take full advantage of the fact that your break coincides with a month that is basically dedicated to inducing warm and fuzzy feelings in your belly and take part in any number of heart-warming activities. Go ice-skating, wander Christmas markets, bake gingerbread men and generally fill yourself so full of happiness and love for all of mankind that by the time you come back to Cambridge your spirit won’t break until at least Week 2.

This is my dog in her Christmas jumper, if looking at her doesn’t fill you with cheer, you have no soul

DO stock up on food

One of the things I missed most about home during my first term at uni was unquestionably our fully functioning kitchen. Has your gyp room got no freezer? Consume as much Ben and Jerry’s as is medically possible. Don’t have access to an oven during term time? Christmas is an excellent excuse to just roast everything. College won’t let you keep any fun extra appliances? Blend smoothies like there’s no tomorrow. Let your culinary imagination run wild before you are restricted once again by the grim reality of the gyp room.

Hello darkness my old friend

DON’T miss out on nightlife

If you’re like me and are returning to a city with an actual nightlife, for the love of god take advantage of it before you are banished back to the barren wasteland of Cambridge clubbing. Go to places that actually have decent drinks deals, more than one room and don’t play the bloody Lion King every night. The memories you make on nights out at home will sustain you the next time you’re pretending to have fun while the ceiling of Life is dripping on you.

Cambridge’s famously bustling nightlife

But no matter how you spend your Christmas holidays, whether you party for five weeks straight or pull a Scrooge and work all through the holidays in a desperate attempt to catch up to your classmates, do try to take some time appreciating your friends and loved ones. Before you know it you’ll be waving them goodbye again and you’ll be back for another eight weeks of madness.

Enjoy the respite while it lasts.