Predictions for a Fresher’s Lent Term

By a washed-out Second Year

Bubble Cambridge Cindies Clubbing Hospital Kuda Library Life Student Studying subject university work

Brace yourself for heading back to the bubble. 

2016 saw the arrival of a bundle of fresh-faced freshers, ready to hurl themselves into Cambridge life. Eight weeks, several grueling supervisions and a few too many trips to Cindies later, they were probably exhausted, drained and longing to head back to a bike-free town full of relaxed, happy people. Well, the holidays are over and it’s time to prepare ourselves for Lent Term 2017.

As a second year who’s been there, done that and got the stash, I’m going to fill you in on what you can expect from this term. Fasten your bike helmets because you’re in for a bumpy ride.

You’ll get bored of your subject

This is to be expected only if you hadn’t already lost interest in your subject during Michaelmas or if you ever had an interest in it to begin with. The once exciting idea of reading the critically acclaimed ideas of some of the world’s best academics in your field now fills you with dread, as you quickly realise that you don’t actually understand them.

This term you’ll hear the haunting echos of regretful students whispering, “I wish I’d gone to Bristol” reverberating through libraries across Cambridge, and chances are, you’ll find yourself involuntarily joining in the chanting.  

You’ve never felt true comfort until falling asleep on a textbook

You’ll get bored of Cindies/Life

“Bored of Cindies!” I hear you exclaim, “how could anyone ever get bored of Cindies!”. During Lent you’ll have gotten over the original thrill of dancing with your new friends in a new place full of new people, and will soon realise that you’re actually living the same nights with the same people and the same music week after week after week like some kind of drunken Groundhog Day.

When you begin to anticipate the Lion King remix’s poor transition into Shake It Off, you’ll start to feel like you’re living a cheesy dystopian deja-vu-esque nightmare. Chances are you’ll try a rogue night in Fez or swing by King’s bunker, but by then it’s too late – the weird grey sludge covering the walls of Kuda has already infected your brain and you’ll be compelled to leg it back to Life with open arms.

Spot the difference

You’ll get bored of swaps  

In short – you’ll basically get bored of everything, swaps included. Michaelmas is always an exciting time for swaps, but they’re always over-hyped and over-priced. It soon dawns on you that spending £20 to eat curry resembling dog food off of a laminated table cloth and paper plates in the upstairs of Curry King or the dungeon cellar of Sesame isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Will that stop you from going on them? Certainly not.

No swap is complete without the plastic spotty table cloth

You’ll end up in Addenbrooke’s

This prediction is far from boring and more than likely – whether it be to fix a broken wrist or to drain a blood blister, you may pay a visit to Addenbrooke’s Hospital this term, Cambridge’s “internationally renowned teaching hospital”. Not only are students taught there, but a fair few are seen in A+E each year.

This is not an experience to turn your nose up at though – you may be in a fair amount of pain but you get to ride in a taxi there, making you feel like you’re leaving Cambridge, and they’ve got an insane vending machine for you to ransack while you wait 3 hours to be seen for your broken nose.

Certified BNOC Elena Stagni is one of Addenbrooke’s most frequent visitors

You’ll make more mistakes

If you thought Fresher’s Week was the only time mistakes were made during your Cambridge career, I’m afraid you were horribly, horribly wrong. Living in college is like being at a boarding school but with alcohol and a steady, strong grapevine of gossip, and now you pretty much know everyone, so the opportunities for drama are endless.

If you are a drinker of alcohol, you’ll probably (but hopefully not) have a “death night” this term – this is where despite the fact that you thought you had a control on your alcoholic limits and built up a tolerance during Michaelmas, that one extra jagerbomb will tip you over the edge and you’ll unfortunately end up being carried home by your friends. You’ll have a three day hangover, will buy apology presents for your Florence Nightingales and swear off alcohol forever, but the chances of you being spotted back in Cindies the next week are definitely high.

You start to actually get to know people

All of that being said, there are some things to look forward to this term. You’ll actually start to get to know the people around you, as opposed to their overly-friendly counterparts. You’ll no longer have to ask the same introductory questions – what subject do you do, where are you from, etc – and will instead have more in common to talk about. Unfortunately, these topics tend to be your workload, whether you’re going out on Wednesday and whether Becca actually did get with Dylan or not last night.

You don’t truly know someone until you’ve heard them drunkenly screaming Girls Just Wanna Have Fun at an 80’s themed bop

You’ll go to a ball (probably)

Whether it be the Pink Ball or the Churchill Spring Ball, there are plenty of opportunities to get your first taste of balling this term. You’ll get to experience the live acts, the vast amounts of food and drink and most importantly, the silent disco. It will also be a constructive exercise, as you’ll learn for future balls to wear comfortable shoes to avoid being escorted to the paramedic’s tent for plasters as I did, and not to get too drunk too early and embarrass yourself in front of the second years.

When you drunkenly jump into the second year’s group photo and start to question your identity as a fresher

You’ll get into a Tab Video 

By Lent, you will have gradually gained the drunken confidence to finally allow yourself to feature in a post-Cindies Tab TV video, be it swaying in the background as your friends express their strong opinions on their favourite colour VK or getting to voice your unfiltered thoughts into the unforgiving microphone yourself. Whether this is a good or bad prediction, remember to check yourself before you wreck yourself and to block your nan on Facebook as I’m not sure she will Forgive you for your Cindies.

My silent debut on Cindescent Exposure in Lent 2016

All in all, Lent term is not to be dreaded – it’s the last term you can really enjoy yourself before the exam pressure hits hard so have fun, and remember not all predictions are accurate, especially not those coming from me.