How to have the perfect Cambridge Palentine’s day

Because we’re all completely fine with being single…

Valentine’s Day can be a sorrowful time for those of us incapable of balancing both romance and supo reading or those who have deleted and re-downloaded Tinder for the fourth time this week (Cambridge men, please take better photos of yourself). But, instead of wallowing alone, why not make an occasion of it and take this time to celebrate the friendships in your life?

Here are my suggestions for the perfect Cambridge Galentine’s or Palentine’s Day.

Be the main character

Ok, ok, I know it’s a bit of a cop-out to say go for a walk around Cambridge as an activity suggestion. But, I do think as students here we sometimes forget how amazingly cool it is to actually be at Cambridge.

Going for a walk (especially early in the morning or late at night) through an iconic Cambridge location with your friends is the perfect way to remind yourself that a million tourists would switch places with you in an instant to be able to confidently saunter through a porter’s lodge. The joy of doing this with your friends is that you have the confidence to create your own soundtrack.

If you haven’t run along King’s Parade at midnight singing Taylor Swift, I would argue you are yet to live life to its fullest potential.

As a Queens’ student, most of my main character energy comes from being near the river. (Image credits: Alice Drury)

Have a wine and cheese night

This is a little bit of a tricky one for me as one of my friends is lactose intolerant and two of them don’t drink. However, no matter what snacks and beverages you have at your disposal, the spirit of a wine and cheese night can be upheld (a Jaffa Cake and Vimto pairing would be entirely acceptable).

Dress up fancy – maybe use that dress you bought for matriculation and haven’t worn since – and put some classical music on, or force your muso friend to provide a personalised soundtrack. For added sophistication, you can swirl your Vimto around in a wine glass and make comments about the subtle blackcurrant flavour profile.

Okay I know this is from a formal… but what is a formal if not a fancier wine and cheese night? (Image credits: Flynn Ryan)

Platonic clubbing

This suggestion is not necessarily the most on-theme since it is a truth universally acknowledged that whenever you don’t set out to pull on a club night you’ll inevitably lock eyes with a mysterious stranger BUT going clubbing with your friends results in some of the purest expressions of friendship that exist.

From the “you look so hot!”s at each other while getting ready to the inevitable (if you stuck to the principle of Palentine’s day and didn’t pull) post-club deep chats, clubbing with your closest friends will create some of your favourite Cambridge memories. Clubbing in Cambridge isn’t always the greatest, I’ll admit, but that’s all the more reason to go with your best friends and make your own fun!

Absolutely no comment shall be provided on whether any of us pulled on this platonic night… (Image credits: Joseph Williams)

Jack’s Chats

Jack’s chats (or “mental-health gelato” as it is sometimes referred to in my friendship group) is a concept that works best with the delicious (if expensive) taste of Jack’s Gelato but it’s easily applicable to the comfort food provider of your choice.

You go on a late-night walk to Jack’s and sit huddled inside (because it’s usually too cold for gelato) having a conversation that is both far too personal and far too vulgar to have in public. As this is a Palentine’s Day article, I recommend a teary, entirely sober conversation about how much your friendships matter to you. Or you could complain about your most recent romantic misadventure… up to you.

You can actually see the moment I realised I should have ordered honeycomb. (Image credits: Joseph Barnes)

Romantic Flat Pancakes

Cambridge gyps are renowned for inadequate facilities – but pancakes only need a hob and some very cheap ingredients. In no time you’ll be flipping pancakes in the air like a pro.

Hot tip, if you, like me, do not own a scale, you can use a measuring jug and achieve passable results.

Possible romantic toppings could include strawberries and Nutella, raspberry jam, melted chocolate or Lotus Biscoff spread (don’t fight me on this – there is nothing more romantic/platonic than Lotus Biscoff spread). Your flat will never feel closer than when you’re all squatting on the floor eating pancakes off a chipped plate. Pure Valentine’s Day bliss.

When you have flatmates that make you pancakes before a 9am supo, who needs a SO? (Image credits: Ella Sheddick)

So before you despair over that final, desperate failed Crushbridge submission or consider trying Bumble (shudder), take some time this Valentine’s Day to treasure your friends and show them your appreciation by dragging them away from an essay deadline for the perfect Palentine’s day. 

Featured image credits: Nathaniel Gunn

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