RE: A little letter to the [past] and beyond (Simone)
Back at the beginning of the year I wrote this cute (cute? Strange? You decide!) blog-letter to my future self. Here’s a link to it – A little letter to the future and beyond (Simone) – (I’m going to post it underneath anyway). So, as promised, here is my reply 🙂
Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be my last entry – though I’m not sure how many of you out there are reading this anymore! – but perhaps a preliminary reflection of the year 🙂
RECEIVED: Nineteen year old Simone, post-exams, at the end of her first year of her Bachelor of Arts
9:15am, Friday, 29th November (I know, why on earth am I up so early?!)
The Couch (Yeeeaah… about that cool bar thing….)
Dear Beginning-of-2013, pre-uni Simone,
Yo! What’s up! Writing to you is your older, cooler, 19 year old self. I’ve ‘graduated’ from first year, I’ve become a bit of a Melbourne Uni coffee-ing hipster girl (like, the Lot 6 waiter gave me looks in semester two like, “um haven’t you been here twice already today?”… awks), I’ve submitted about a billion essays and have been to the Royal Exhibition Building three times for exams (so much for Arts students not having any!). You’ll probably also be really relieved to know I do have uni friends (PHEW!), and that I eventually worked out my way around campus. And now it’s summer holidays, woohoo! Another three and half months of freedom! (‘Freedom’ being shifts at the checkout and asking for Flybuys, ha. But hey, at least there’s no Marxism readings or Lit essays when I get home!).
You know what, I don’t think I should lie to you. I’m actually not that ‘cooler’. I know, sad. Don’t cringe, but I am indeed just as punny as I used to be. (‘Blotter’ is so smart, Sim! I salute you!). I still have a bit of a list of awkward, Miranda-Hart-style moments (perhaps that was expected?). But I am most definitely more confident with dealing with them. Being at uni has made me incredibly independent. And I think I’ve actually managed to crawl out of my little comfy shell. I’m not sure what I was hiding from before, really. Because the sun is so bright and beautiful outside. If you’re open to the world, it’s kind of open to you. Which, yeah, might put you in a vulnerable position. Like of rejection, humiliation, all of that… but the rewards can be endless. You just never know what is coming around the corner, you know? Taking a few little risks in life – even when they prove to give you serious stomach butterflies and a few sleepless nights – are seriously risks worth taking. I know it’s cliche, but it’s true. So far 2013’s mini-risks have gifted me a weekly English tutoring job next year, several really good friends, a top letter in a newspaper, and, best of all, a feeling that I’ve actually achieved a bit. Aww.
As you predicted, I don’t think I ‘aced’ my exams and essays! But when I wrote that earlier this year, I didn’t actually realise what I was writing. Doing really well at university is so much harder than in your class at school! To actually just do the assignment/exam/essay is achievement in itself, never mind the result!! (And what does the result matter, anyway?).
Haha! ‘The Spot’ is no longer a foreign place after all the time I’ve spent there over the year! It’s actually quite a nice lecture theatre down in the Basement… and though a hassle to get to, having some short cuts (or leaving it a bit early) definitely makes it easier to get to and from. Similarly, that ‘packed Swanston street tram’ was NOT packed! But the butterflies were totally justified – I can’t believe how much lectures are second nature now. It’s almost weird to read how much I was nervous about what to write in them, to come in and sit alone! I’ve since graduated to being one of those Macbook people and am totally fine to chill by myself. Don’t judge about the Mac thing, I am a tad ashamed. (I still love you, pen and paper).
As for your queries, I’m absolutely in good stead with all my best high school buds. Two of them are coming over tonight, and the other is in Paris eating croissants! Um, I’m not sure I have one favourite subject. Uni subjects (even Arts!) are hard, pre-uni gurl. Creative-writing was awesome, but I felt like all of my creative energy had been seriously zapped up by the end! Literature was even more difficult… let’s not talk about Psychology (I’m suppressing it in my Long Term Memory, ha). Yeah, nothing was ‘fun’! But that is not to say unenjoyable. Intro to Ecological History, for instance, was actually really interesting, despite it being one of my last minute decisions. Same as Intro to Political Ideas. I feel like my attitudes/scope of ideas about the world and humanity have somewhat widened this year. And that’s probably exactly what Arts is about!
Of course I do still love Ed and Missy and Atonement! But soon you will also discover Miranda Hart and that will be a life-changing moment. Same as Kodaline, this amazing Irish band that one of my bestie’s just introduced me to. I’m in friggin love with them!
Your first year was amazing, Simone. You will love university. Get set, get excited. It’s scary and disorienting and isolating at first, granted. But truly, it’s an awesome place to be. So much so that I legitimately think I’ll miss it over summer!
PS. As you wished! – Hi Victoria and Kiryll! (Where are your blogs lately?!?! If we don’t talk again over summer, have an amazing holiday and Christmas – hopefully we manage to have a few subjects together next year! 🙂 ).
FROM: An exhausted, eighteen year old Simone after her first official semester day at the University of Melbourne;
Monday, 4th March, 2013
The Living Room Couch
TO: Simone of (the more sophisticated) age of nineteen, at the end of her first year of her Bachelor of Arts
Approx time this should arrive to my future self: Friday, 22nd November, 2013
The Cool Bar You Now Always Go To (/The Living Room Couch, just in case not much as changed…)
Hi, there. Guess who it is! Your little self after her first day at Big School, university! I just thought that maybe it might be fun if I write you a short letter, or should I say, Blotter (see what I did there!! Hopefully you’re still as punny and good at word-merging as you are right now in 8 months time! …actually, let’s hope you’re not, because clearly, you’re going to be a lot less nerdy and a lot cooler by the time you’ve finished Year 1. Right? Right!). That way, you can compare this very day and how it’s going at the moment with how it’s ended up in the end. I hope you’re going well at the moment, having fun with all your not-so-new hipster lovely friends, hanging out with your spunky boyf (‘spunky’ and ‘boyf’ being another couple of words inherited from your mum that you no longer use, much to the relief of friends old and new!), having aced all your exams and assignments and what not (cough, cough), whilst still catching up with your highschool besties. But don’t be too hard on yourself if you didn’t, though, okay?! Just think back to me, your little (rather innocent) self, and realise what a giant step you took this year. I’ll bet you’ll have achieved more than you’ve realised!
My first day today went well – perhaps you’d like a quick recount of how it went, for old times sake? To start with, I was terribly nervous on that packed Swanston Street tram, I’ll tell you (I know, it probably sounds pretty lame now to you!), with my very first lecture in this rather strange sounding place called ‘The Spot’ which isn’t even on the main campus!! I made it there just in time as all the other Creative Writers entered the lecture theatre, and made the mistake of getting a seat with one of those things you lean on while you’re writing that you probably know the name of by now, for left-handers, which meant my right arm was twisted in a kind of awkward position around… the lecturer spoke well, made a few jokes which seemed to break the uncomfortable silence in the room. Some people were scribbling down every word he said; others tapping away at their Macbooks. I wasn’t sure how much of the ‘introductory’ kind of notes we really needed, how much to write down, but I guess that’s one of the little things you’ll have figured out by the time you’re reading this. You’ll be a lecture-pro, writing down all that stuff! I then restrained myself from running and fast-walked my way back through the campus for my next lecture, which seemed to be on the other side of the earth. 8 minutes or so is not long enough to get from The Spot to anywhere on time! (But you’ve probably worked out a few short cuts by now!). I then had an entire 3 hours break to get lunch, in which I sat in the shade of a lovely tree for a while and caught up with an O-week friend, and finally had an Arts Foundation lecture that went for an entire 20 minutes, with a good 10 minutes spent watching some (relevant) music videos on Youtube!
Are you still in contact/good friends with those from highschool? Or have you drifted away a bit? Do you have many new friends? What has been your favourite subject? Do you still love Ed Sheeran and Missy Higgins and Coldplay and Atonement?
My prediction is thus: you will remain close to your best friends, even as one will be in London come November and travelling the world and one at RMIT; you will have met a few lovely new people, in the Melbourne Uni clubs and things especially; your favourite subject will have been Creative Writing but you enjoyed Psychology more than you thought you would. You’ll probably have a clearer picture for the future, and hopefully some exciting summer holiday plans. Maybe you’ll have been to a few more cool concerts and night clubs, too. Oh – and you’ll have probably met the other bloggers! Say hi to future Kiryll and Victoria for me!
Please write back,