So, you guys, don’t freak out, but I have some medium enormous news…
I have completed my degree in Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Bristol.
I admit I am still in shock. I have yet to catch up on sleep (or game of thrones) but I thought a quick post thinking back over the adventure that was my uni experience and also looking forward to the adventures to come would be cute and topical. So here goes:
I have submitted 27 essays. Sat through 9 exams. Written a 13,000 word dissertation. Thrown up 9 times (that I can remember). Been on 3 compulsory zoo trips. Visited 7 castles. Managed 9 (rainy) days of digging. Had 16 housemates. Racked up £27.000 worth of tuition fee debt (and even more student loans) Let’s not talk about that part. Had 6 jobs. And ultimately, survived 3 years – 156 weeks – of studenthood.
Boiling down three years of my life into a list of numbers feels pretty bizarre. A typical anthropologist, qualitative data is more my cup of tea. But where to begin when summarising such a roller coaster of an experience? I have learnt so much. Not just about Aztecs or Athens or Primates or Personhood, but about living with others, drinking cheap cider, making an unknown city a home, and writing entire essays in all-night stints.
The weirdest thing for me now that I’m done is that for literally the first time in my life, I have no real plans or deadlines. From progressing through school, taking GCSEs in order to take A-Levels in order to get into university, I’m suddenly left with… whatever the hell I want. In the next couple of weeks I have arranged to take part as part of the Social Media and Public Engagement team at an archaeological excavation at Berkeley Castle (See more about that here) and I know that I will be spending the summer in the Alps as a holiday representative (more about that to come), as well as a planned family trip to the Isles of Scilly, and a later trip to Istanbul with L. But come September I will be returning to my family home, to my single bedroom in the attic with my cats, and then…. what?
A little bit terrifying to suddenly have infinity choices..
I suppose it’s true that the world is my oyster, but I just wish that it was a slightly smaller oyster and that someone could come and show me how to do that thing with the lemon and the vinegar and the little forks and the gulping – The oyster analogy actually is a little bit confusing. Let’s move on from that. WHAT I MEAN is that I wish someone could come and tell me what to do with my life and how to do it. However, I suppose I just have to have faith that things will work out how they are meant to and that it will soon become clear what my future holds. Or not. Either way, one thing I have definitely learnt in the past three years is that even when things get really really REALLY crap, you are stronger than you think and can and will endure. So there world. Bring it on.
Any advice from those of you who have graduated and have already tackled the Big Bad World of grownuphood? Anyone else in the same boat as me? GUIDANCE PLEASE!