Spring is here!

Spinning into Easter

The final term has begun! Easter is fast approaching and before I know it I would have finished my second year!

After amicably saying goodbye to Chaucer, I have started my Literature 2 unit and become acquainted with his next generation – Wyatt, Johnson, Spenser and of course the Sidney dynasty. I really want to go out with a bang this year and make my results the best yet so I am working extremely hard with every aspect of my units. After each lecture, I am re-watching and taking down detailed notes and expanding on them – this takes about 2-3 hours a lecture (“madness!” I hear you say – yes… but nothing a cup of tea and a packet of bourbons can’t solve). This unit runs from 1500-1700 and we are currently still within the Reformation period. I’m really enjoying this unit as I can look at literature from a political stance and how the period really encouraged cultural productivity.

My optional unit had some drama surrounding it – in both ways! Originally, I had chosen to work in the Drama Department on a unit called ‘Performing the Archive’. The alarm bells should have started ringing when the word ‘PERFORMING’ was blazoned across the unit title suggesting there would be an element of PERFORMING involved. But, apparently, the brain of Victoria Jones completely missed this point and thought it would be a research unit. How wrong I was. Not only would I be being assessed on my performing skills, but I would be in front of the general public on the Bristol Old Vic stage. Now, don’t get me wrong – an amazing opportunity for anyone who doesn’t crumble at the very thought of having to act. The irony has already been pointed out to me that I have performed all my life through gymnastics and dance – however, the act of opening my mouth and verbal words coming out of it in front of an expectant audience makes me shudder!

I quickly realised what I had got myself in for and went straight to my personal tutor and the student support office to see if I could change. THIS IS NOT RECCOMENDED. Seriously. Read what your unit entails before you choose it – in EVERY detail! Then you would not have the hassle and toing and froing I had. But – success! I was eventually able to change units to… Landscape, Poetry and Aesthetics! Ok, ok, you might look at this unit and think ‘Gardens, you’re doing a unit on gardening…?’ Yes! And I love it! I’ve already handed in one essay on the contribution of Pope’s poetry on landscape gardening and it was a joy to write! No, it’s not for everyone, but that’s why there is such a wide variety of optional units for everyone.

Outside studying, I have signed on a flat for next year – hooray! It’s got a little garden and is light and bright. It’s not huge but I’m only small (5’2 in fact) so all I need is a pocket size place – my own little pocket of Bristol.

Also, I competed in the Advanced category of the South West University Pole Championships in Exeter on the 25th February. And… *Dramatic Pause* I won! It was so unexpected – so much so that I’d settled into my seat with a cup of tea and plenty of snacks to hear the results. When they called my name, I jumped in shock – flapjack and tea everywhere! Apologies to everyone sitting around me! 

Bristol did really well overall, winning both the Advanced and Beginner categories, coming 4th in the Intermediate category and our Group performing so well in a really tough category. We came 2nd overall amongst all the universities in the South West meaning we have qualified for Nationals at the end of March! It is such an honour to represent the University, let alone the South West. Such a proud Vice-President! So no dominoes delivery just yet – back to training to do it all again in Newcastle! Come on Bristol!

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