Saturday, 22 December 2018

My time in Coleraine is coming to an end!

I am sad to say that this is my final post from Coleraine.  Before moving here for my semester of University, I had so many unanswered questions. I can honestly say that any doubt I had about my time up here was removed within weeks, the months after only proved that you don’t have to go half way across the world to find new experiences and cultures. I moved a couple of hours up the country and across a “border” to find these experiences. I can honestly say that it’s been one of the best experiences of my life, I’ve made memories that I’ll hold dearly for life.

Going home for Christmas this year is a bit different, I have more time beforehand to get things in order, all of my assignments have been handed up and signed off but, I haven’t gotten my exams out of the way yet. The exam period in UU Coleraine doesn’t begin until January 7th meaning I’ll be busy studying over the Christmas period. This is a thought that I find very strange. Normally I leave semester behind and don’t think about college work until I start back in January, this year exams will always be in the back of my mind. I am eager to complete my exams and move on to the next part of my placement year, working.

Making friends up here was something I found a lot easier than I thought it would be. I met a great group of people who I will truly miss as we all move on. We spent out last weekend together watching movies and playing games. Organising a time to get the whole group together was tough but we wanted to spend time together before we all left. On Sunday we shared Christmas gifts by playing a game called White Elephant, it involves exchanging mysterious gifts within a group.

Being home for Christmas and spending time with my family and friends is something I’m really looking forward to. It will be a great chance to catch up with everyone and tell them all I’ve been up to. I am however looking forward to meeting my international friends when we all go back for exams in January. After spending a couple of months’ surrounded by them, it’s been strange being away. I suppose we’ve become one big family, we spent our time helping each other settle in and we were always there for each other when someone needed a listening ear, after all we were all in a similar situation.

One of my worries prior to leaving home was how much would change, and more importantly how I’d change! Well I did change and I can honestly say it’s been a good change. The first half of my third year placement has helped me to mature as a young adult through the situations and experiences I’ve encountered. I always thought I was an independent person but the past few months’ have made me become even more independent. I’ve really had to stand on my own two feet as I didn’t have family or friends to fall back on like at home. My time in Coleraine has really opened up a window of future opportunities for me, its allowed me to make worldwide connections.

See you all in the new year!
Áine. B

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