Alarm Clocks, The Sunday Game and Summer-Time excitement!

Saturday June 28th 2014

Ssssshhhhh! What’s that I hear? Y’know what that sound is? That’s the sweet sweet sound of a morning minus an alarm clock. WOOOHOOOOO! HELLOOOOOO SUMMER!! I wish I could tell you about everything I’ve done since my last blog, but to be perfectly honest, I haven’t done very much at all and I have enjoyed every single minute of it.

Ever since beginning university, life just seemed to move straight into the fast lane, so the post-exam come down provided time for much needed time to rest and catch up with friends and family at home. During the year, Sunday nights until Friday afternoons were spent in Belfast and whilst I was at home I was working and all of a sudden straight back up the M2 again for another week in the big smoke. Making time for my family became very difficult. It has always been tradition in our house that on a Sunday evening despite what was usually a hectic week, aunties uncles and cousins bailed into granny and granda’s house for what was usually horrendous noise levels and tea that flowed like a tap. As frustrating as not being able to hear the person beside you for everyone else talking over one another, the rattling of cups in the kitchen, the wee ones running around in circles under Granny’s feet being warned to “keep away from that stove!”,  “take that football outside before you bring that light down!”, or the good old favourite, “if you don’t sit a’ peace for ten minutes I swear I’ll put you in the car and you’ll go straight home to bed!”, the Sunday game highlights reaching maximum volume and Granda telling everyone else to keep the noise down so he could become, as usual, heavily involved in a good match analysis (his opinion is much more valid and obviously correct than any linesman, referee or commentator in case you didn’t know), in hindsight, this was my favourite part of any week. We’ve always been an exceptionally close-knit family and it was only whilst holding back the tears shouting cheerio to everyone with kit bag in one hand, and substantially larger food bag in the other that I came to realise how important my family actually are to me. I know for many, this may seem fairly over-dramatic, as I only moved to Belfast which is an hour up the road and I came home every weekend, unlike some students at university overseas, but that was how I found myself feeling every week without fail.

I’ve painted a fairly rosey picture there of family life. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve now been home for three weeks and already have received several warnings that A) the dishes will not wash themselves, B) my home house, contrary to popular belief, is not in fact a hotel, C) my mother is not my ‘skivy’ (for non culchies that’s a general slave),  and D) I can no longer bluff my way around the fact that my room is not an ‘organised mess’, but a simple bomb site.

For anyone who is concerned, I’ve made it to the top of what seemed like an insurmountable pile of exams. Being a Post-Primary BEd Student, I had one more exam than those students who specialise in Primary Education. Yes, this did come as quite a surprise in September. So for those applying to uni next year – when your careers teacher advises you to research your course in great detail, they are not saying so for the benefit of their own health. Do as they say, so you can avoid somewhat unpleasant surprises such as this one. In fairness however, common sense would have probably told me that when my degree was Post-Primary Religious Studies WITH English, that I would have been examined in both. But, of course, me being me, this fairly obvious element didn’t dawn on yours truly until I was told otherwise in September. I didn’t mind though, my heart was set on Post-Primary teaching, so whatever it takes to get there, it takes.

After completing my first set of university exams, I have one piece of advice for those commencing A Level study – If somebody tells you  that your A Levels are the hardest exams of your life …they’re lying. Well, in my experience anyway. Don’t let that put you off though, any exams are worth doing if they result in you working at something you love.  Despite the culture shock that my exams were, with hard work, a few late nights, and many, MANY prayers, I PASSED FIRST YEAR!  WOHOO!

It’s hard to believe that term-time as a Michaela Foundation Scholar has come to an end. But with many happy memories and many new friends made as a result of my involvement with such a special and vibrant charity, I look forward to the summer that lays ahead. I’m particularly excited for the second Michaela Camp this year in Derry and cannot wait for a reunion with the rest of the wonderful volunteers from last year’s camp, whilst welcoming on board any new volunteers that we are lucky enough to encounter. LET’S GO CAMPA DHOIRE!

Until next month,

God Bless,

Eiméar