I worked out that Thursday will mark 20 years to the day that I moved into my halls in my first year of uni. I remember arriving in my halls and how the first two people I met were:
- a guy called Adam who had John Lennon glasses, a brown velvet jacket, beads round his neck and no shoes or socks on (he used to walk around barefooted to connect with nature. He also once tried to get high by ingesting a jar of Schwarz nutmeg, dissolved into several mugs of hot chocolate);
- a guy called Dan who was from near Preston and had curtains and a tye-die t-shirt and was into happy hardcore and studied astrophysics.
My dad had made me up a banana crate full of groceries to get me started, but we forgot it and so I had to find my way to the Co-op to get some food for dinner. I remember the ritual of cooking for myself for the first time, and how my diet in the early days mirrored the sorts of meals I would have had at home (until I discovered that I didn’t have to eat boiled potatoes with every meal).
I remember awkwardly standing around drinking Foster’s Ice or something like that til it was time to go to the student bar. I was in the cheapest accommodation the uni had to offer, so it was either a 40 minute walk from Cyncoed hill or a wait for a student minibus.
Anyway, that first night I lost all of the people from my halls, or maybe they lost me. I made some crap attempts at making conversation with people and then gave up, walked home, made myself cheese on toast and went to bed at about 11pm.
Things did get better from that point, and I made some friends within the halls. TBH we just seemed to spend a lot of time platonically hanging around in each other’s rooms and drinking.