How to have a banging uni year without clubs

bye bye SU, hello game night

Gone are the days of going to a club, getting with a number of questionable people and stumbling home at 5am. No more rocking up to an in-person lecture, iced coffee in hand, hungover as always. At the moment we can’t even pop to another friend’s house or go to a house party, and the pubs are even going to shut this Friday. For most people, this can make being at uni feel very bleak. But your uni year doesn’t have to be boring.

My housemates and I have solved this problem. Every Friday, we’re going to spend time together, with a different theme each week that we’re going to pull out of a hat. Here are a few of our ideas:

Of course we had a bake-off

After watching contestants on GBBO making cakes and sweet treats, some failing miserably, we thought we could do better (spoiler alert: we couldn’t). We each had an allotted time in the kitchen to bake brownies then at the end of the day put on our Prue and Paul hats and judged each other’s creations. This one can get a bit intense so remember to be nice yeah, channel your inner Mary.

Film night for the win

One of the perks of living with your friends again instead of being quarantined with your parents is you no longer have to watch shows on your own and can actually chill happening watching Netflix. With all the streaming services at our disposal these days, there’s tonnes of programmes and films to choose from.

Grab popcorn, your dressing gown and your friends for a chilled evening. We’re in the middle of Ghosts on BBC iPlayer, a comedy from the creators of Horrible Histories. I’d highly recommend. You could also spend the night educating yourselves with documentaries. From David Attenborough to Stacey Dooley, there’s tonnes of those to choose from too.

Who doesn’t love a game night?

Before I left for uni, I raided my parents’ attic of old board games. All your classics: Cluedo, monopoly and scrabble, alongside some newer ones I already had: Gutterhead (NSFW Pictionary) and the 8 Out of 10 Cats board game. I’m sure the many charity shops of Cardiff will have a good selection for dirt cheap now that no one can go back home to visit their parents. Things do get heated, but they’re a lot of fun, especially if a few drinks are had alongside playing them.

We also found a website of compiled Family Fortunes questions, played Taboo online and the sorts of things you only do at childhood sleepovers like guessing the post-it-note on your head. Not for those who don’t want to be roasted by your friends for your choice of card or answer and definitely for those who want to get very competitive.

Drinking games are the only thing getting us through tbh

Who says getting pissed and having fun has to stop now that we can only go out with people we live with? Think of it as an endless pre’s, get some good tunes going and the card games out. You could even dress up and pretend it’s a typical Wednesday YOLO night.

Perks of a night like this include being able to roll into bed when you’ve had enough, instead of trekking home. Instead of grabbing a Fam Fish on the way home, you can just grab something out of the freezer and save that precious loan for some more lockdown loungewear.

Cathays come dine with me?

If you’ve got that one housemate who’s cooking is next level, or somebody who likes to experiment, this one is for you. Get someone in your house to cook for everyone, or all attempt to cook together. Then you can sit around together and eat the food like a cute lil family. I made fajitas for my housemates, because who doesn’t like fajitas??? Nothing wrong with a little house bonding right?

Have a pamper day, you deserve it

Turn your living room into something out of a year 7 sleepover (minus the taking pictures of junk food and putting it on facebook with the caption ‘munch’) and have a pamper evening. Put your PJ’s back on (or if you’re like me, you never got out of them all day), get the nail polishes and face masks out and relax. We used the Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Mask and all I can say is… Wow. My face felt amazing afterwards.

Who said lockdown had to be full of Netflix and takeaways? There’s so many things you can do to make Drakeford’s new plan a little more exciting, and turn being stuck in a house kinda fun. Stay positive folks.

Related stories recommended by this writer:

• The new normal: a Cardiff student’s average week during Covid

• Things in Cardiff student houses that just make sense

• Missing the SU? Here is the journey of a night out in Cardiff