New Beginnings

Starting a new thing for the first time can be scary, everyone knows that. I honestly believe that nobody really likes change, just some people are better at accepting it than others. Apparently, I’m not one of those people! I’m now nearing the end of my second week at a new university, where I’ve just started as a postgrad. It’s kind of scary! There’s a lot of things that are very different when you’re a postgrad compared to when you’re a fresher. We moved in a week before all the freshers, so got to see them all arrive last weekend- it all made me feel very old. The freshers were unloading all their things, carting their clothes and their alcohol (all the essentials!) into their new rooms, while I was going to the library to get textbooks.

I’ve thought a lot about when I first moved to university this last week, and especially about how you suddenly feel as if you’ve been plunged into this world of adulthood that you’re not really ready for yet. One of the more daunting things, for me anyway, was having to cook for myself. This is difficult I think in any new place, whether you’re an experienced cook or not. Suddenly, everything is different- you don’t know what setting the oven needs to be on, you don’t know the individual quirks of the hob yet, and you don’t know what all the buttons on the microwave mean (our one at home is very simple). Everything seems daunting, and you feel under pressure to cook ‘properly’ on your own. And yet some of my funniest memories of my undergrad life have been cooking-related. I once melted (yes, melted) my measuring jug on the hob, my flatmate once tripped and threw the food we’d been preparing for ages on the floor, another friend left a pizza in the oven and forgot about it- the list goes on. And yet I’m still alive!

I remember the time when I thought I’d never be cooking properly and I’d never learn to do these things, but one of the best things is that you get to figure these things out together! In first year, we had to teach one flatmate to make pasta (you know who you are!), but now she cooks complicated family recipes and can make sushi! So, for any of you feeling a bit daunted by a new beginning, and as a reminder to myself in the same situation, pick up those pots and pans, or those baking trays, buy some ingredients and get cooking! Try, or even invent a new recipe, or practice an old one, but don’t be afraid to experiment- it’ll all fall into place in the end, even if there are a few bumps along the way!

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