Ok, so I may have been pretending it’s Christmas since at least the beginning of November, but now it’s definitely acceptable to embrace the festive spirit. December is just such a lovely time in Bristol, with the lights lining Park Street as you shop, the tacky but strangely lovable market in Broadmead and the mulled cider served at every pub. That is, of course, until someone reminds you about the exams looming just around the corner in January. Being a poor student, I’ve tried to hunt out lots of bargains this year, something which is Bristol is really great for. My best find of the year came from a pop up flea market at Bristol Folk House.
I’ve tried not to get too distracted from work, and it turns out that The Pogues ‘Fairytale of New York’ acts as a soothing backdrop to essay/ dissertation stress. My final essay of 2014 (due back any day now- eek!) was about the relationship between Chinese society and Opium following the 19th century Opium wars. One of the great things about the course at Bristol is the sheer amount of choice. Over the past few years I’ve chosen modules on Forensic Medicine, the GDR, the history of Childhood, Vichy France and next term I am studying Victorian Sex and Sexuality.
I had to give my ‘extended proposal’ presentation for my dissertation earlier this week. For this, I spent a whole day in the Bristol Referencing Library searching for sources. You start to feel like a real Historian when, after hours of searching through slightly mouldy books, and conquering the microfilm reader to browse newspapers, you finally find what you were looking for. For me, this was a few lines in ‘Felix Farley’s Bristol Journal’ describing the opening of Arnos Vale cemetery, the focus of my dissertation. This may not sound like much of a success, but It felt like it at the time!
It is of course now time to start thinking about exams. I only have two, which isn’t too bad. Or so I keep telling myself. Although I really enjoy my degree, and am sad that it will be over in roughly 5 months, I am looking forward to an exam free Christmas period next year. It will be the first since before GCSE’s!
Enough about exams, Merry Christmas and a Happy New year everyone!