Ah, nostalgia. The basis of many a self-indulgent blog post. It has been a busy few years filled with a variety of housemates since I moved into Skeffington block at the University of Leicester. Moving in to my apartment in Florida made me want to reminisce. If you’ve ever lived with me then buckle your seat belts because we are going on a feels trip. If you haven’t then feel free to sigh in annoyance.
It all began in freshers…
On my first day of university my dad drove me up to Leicester. I was the first person to arrive. He told me to wave goodbye to him from the window of my bedroom on the ground floor. He then proceeded to sneak up the side of the building, jump out at me and leave me crying and alone in a strange city. Fortunately, I would not be alone for long. Skeffington house was rapidly filled with twenty-three other eighteen year old girls, six of whom I would go on to move in with in my second year. Most of first year with these girls involved invading other people’s bedrooms (usually Jo or Laura’s) to watch Come Dine With Me before dinner, napping, eating and drinking. Most miraculously of all, we never had a middle of the night fire alarm!
It would also be unfair not to include Lowesby when talking about first year. If we hadn’t met the boys from the smelly block behind ours then our university experience would have been completely different.
Then, in September 2011 the seven of us moved to Severn street (ha!) which was thoroughly entertaining. We spent most weekday mornings curled up on the sofa watching Jeremy Kyle.
We had so much fun. There was the time that Onesie drunkenly declared that she was, “Too hot! I need nachos….” So she stripped down to her underwear, made nachos and sat on the floor by the oven watching them cook through the glass window. I do have a photo from this event but I have a feeling she would rather I didn’t put it on the internet. Or the multiple times when we were woken up at 4am because she had come in from a night out and needed the bathroom too urgently to take off her six inch heels before she ran up the stairs. There was a lot of amusement just from her.
But Onesie wasn’t the only source of laughter. There was also the time when we watched ‘How to Train your Dragon’ and decided that Laura was a Welsh dragon. Period.
This photo is from when we discovered that Onesie is terrified of party poppers.
I have no idea what is happening in this one though….
I wanted to ask the girls (and Adam) if they had anything that stood out to them. These are the responses I got:
“Trolley rides in first year. Miles’ mum. Also that time you hid in my bed. I can laugh at that now but at the time it was fucking terrifying.”
“The time we stole your George Foreman and wrapped our faces in tea towels to post ransom pictures on Facebook.”
“The time when me and Onesie went out for drinks and met these old guys in like their 40s and they were buying us loads of drinks and Onesie got smashed and vommed on Simba. She came downstairs in the morning with vom in her hair and your sister was watching TV. So funny.”
Then it was third year and time for me to abandon these wonderful people and fly off to America for a year. I moved into a dorm room at LSU in August 2012 where I met Miss Wisconsin, Lexi.
Lexi taught me about squeaky cheese, gave me a serious case of hair envy and helped tutor me in the ways of country music. I had been nervous about sharing a room for the first time but Lexi made it easy. Unfortunately, in the November, I realised that I was going to seriously struggle to pay for both dorms and a meal plan (which is required in dorms as there are no cooking facilities). So, I contacted residential services with a sob story letter in the hopes that they would release me from my housing contract and, as most of you will know, they did!
At a Lady Crew night I mentioned how I was on the hunt for an off campus apartment and within seconds was offered a room in the sketchy green apartment building with Courtney. Despite the fact that if you placed a ball at one side of the apartment it would roll to the other, the sketchy apartment was the best place I have ever lived. That place had good JuJu and those six months living with Courtney were some of the best I’ve had.
There always seemed to be extra people around. People hanging out, sleeping on the futon, drinking beer, stopping by between classes or on their way to the dock. Courtney took me to my first Frinks, always baked cookies (“Shall I bake something?” “Do you really think I’m going to say no?”) and when she got a car nothing could stop us from getting Froyo four times a week! We threw the Spring semester’s novice party and continued to have sticky floors for months afterwards (not that this stopped us having the St. Patrick’s day party too). Living on State street was glorious and a huge factor in my desire to move back to the States. Leaving was the saddest I’ve ever been.
Last stop on the feels train. You ready? In September 2013 I moved to Victoria Avenue where I lived with Sarah (a fellow rower) and George. We ate too much chocolate (kindly provided by Pete our overly generous, former SAS neighbour who took it as a personal challenge to overfeed us and his two cats), spent three hours eating dinner together every night and only used our living room once the entire year. They did a wonderful job at keeping me sane while applying for grad school, I was very lucky to have them.
This year I am living with two other writers from my master’s program: Jaimie and Stephanie. Jaimie has moved down from Minneapolis and seems to be working for the Mid-West tourist board because every time she talks about it I want to go there more. Stephanie is from Jacksonville and is the champion behind finding us somewhere to live. By some crazy fluke I have ended up in a super fancy apartment complex with a pool and a gym and twenty-four hour security. Whattt??? Do they not know that I survived two years on the outskirts of notoriously sketchy Evington?
This post has taken me several days to put together because I kept getting distracted by looking at old photos and talking to old friends. Jaimie and Stephanie have a lot to live up to. If they can do it then they will be up there with some incredibly special people. I really hope they are up to the challenge!