I just had a major scare, where I think virus fake anti-virus thing installed itself, told me I had loads of crap, tried to force me to give it credit card details, then I couldn't turn it off, I couldn't delete it, it took over the background of my desktop, it was trying to intimidate me... ARGH.
I restored the system and I think its ok now. But I was seriously panicking. My beautiful baby in trouble! It seriously freaked me out.
In other news...
I bought my Hebrew textbook, and have started to learn the alphabet. Alphabets should not be complicated. But this alphabet-- well. There are no vowels. I don't even know how to begin to learn to pronounce a language which HAS NO VOWELS. Perhaps I can think about it like txtspk, maybe that will help. There are three different s s s. And some of the letter look pretty similar. Oh, and I know they have this in Greek as well, but when people do this ' and expect me to know what that sounds like... well, I'm sorry, but I don't.
I mean, I know I'll get it if I just focus and then when I get to Cambridge I'll probably wish to be learning something as ridculously simple. But still. I already know the Greek alphabet. And absolutely everyone else in the appropriate facebook group is taking Greek. And I dunno, I kinda wonder why I picked Hebrew in the first place, am I just making life more difficult for no particular reason? Originally, I had my heart set on learning Arabic and reading the Koran and wouldn't that be awesome? But then I was concerned that Arabic doesn't seem to have any supervisions, plus no Qu'ranic study modules until next year, whereas I am taking both the OT and NT modules available this year. But again, why exactly have I turned away from Greek? I mean, I think I thought Greek was boring. But now, I'm starting to think, well, maybe I'd rather read the NT than the OT anyway. Hebrew??? Sounds really cool, but honestly - why???
*sigh* Maybe all this will come to nothing. Clearly I like double guessing myself.
I got another big pack of stuff from Pembroke, but as of yet nothing fun - it was serious stuff outlining bills and rules and stuff. But at least I now know my room number and my rent etc, so I then spent a while making an accounts spreadsheet trying to figure out budgets and estimate how much I might need for food etc, try to see how much I'll have at the end of the year.
Oh and also, Sarah Rees Brennan wrote another part of her Big Idea stories, which give back story for characters from her debut The Demon's Lexicon. This one is about Marie, Daniel and Olivia, who I particularly adore. Some people in the fandom expressed less than love for Olivia, but to me I find her extraodrinary, amazing; I adore her as a character and kinda would love to have a chat with her as a person. I mean, I have much love for Daniel and Marie as well, of course. I mean, clearly I adore every single character Sarah writes. (OMG I love Seb McFarlane SO MUCH he is utterly wonderful and excellent). I really can't help this. They are so beautiful, and I don't mean physically. Beautiful and rounded and whole. And so I adore them.
Anyway. There are no spoilers for The Demon's Lexicon, and this stands alone. So anyone that has maybe seen me raving about it should read it, get a feel for sarah's writing and beautiful character crafting, and then if they like it they should definitely read The Demon's Lexicon. It is The Arundel Tomb and everyone should read it.
Sometimes I've found myself just in a happy haze. Thursday, I kept bursting out laughing and giggling, and Friday and today I'm more incredible chilled and serene. Sure, my hard work is to be rewarded with even harder work in my future, but for now, I have done it! I have achieved. And I am very happy about this.
Thanks for all the congratulations you guys! It means a lot and had me :D for hours. And, I repeat my own congratulations to all my flisters who are also starting uni soon! Well done for all your work - we are all going to have such a great time!
I've just spent over an hour reading stuff about freshers and about various clubs and societies and opportunities at Cambridge, and there are so many cool and exciting things. Blatantly, I am going to join far too many in the first week, then realise I actually need some time to, I don't know, work, and have to stop most of them. But yes. There is an Amoral Science society! A Writers Guild! An Assassins Guild! And, and fencing and sailing and gliding and shooting and archery which I used to ADORE. And a Harry Potter club. And soooo many other things...!
I tried to order my netbook yesterday but I'm not sure it went through properly. I should get it within a week though, I hope. And then, it will need a name... hmmm... Plus, I want a new mp3 player, and an absolutely gorgeous leather bound notebook, and one of those amazing glass ink quill/pen things of amazingness. They are seriously what anyone that likes writing of any kind longs for and theres a particular shop near me that looks like it hasn't changed for about two hundred years that sells such things and I adore that shop and I've only ever ought presents for other people in there. So now, I shall buy myself some presents, and indulge myself shamelessly. These are my rewards. Then, come October, it will be the beginning of my life of frugalness.
...Sure it will be.
It was nice today to meet up with my friend C - I haven't seen her since our school leaving Ball, over a month ago now, and we wailed about such things together. We could go to Cambridge together, or we could be separated by, I dunno, 100 miles I guess, maybe more. At least with some of my friends, I know they'll be far away from me. We try not to talk about what we'd do there if we both get in but its tricky, things slip out and then I feel weird. She'll get in easy, and so will a couple of my other friends, and then there's me and ok a couple of other people for whom its really uncertain. Its killing to know that everyone else - the university, ucas, our school - already know.
But yes. It was lovely, casual, normal and relaxing to meet her and trail around some shops, like we've done a hundred times before. I haven't really shopped, except a pilmgrimage to H&M last weekend when I was in London, since before exams, and maybe I'm a complete girl that's been ruined by a consumerist society, but it is nice to shop. Really, to find something that looks really nice and you can actually afford and you can think of several ways you could wear it. It doesn't always help if I'm depressed or miserable, but as a way to spend an afternoon, generally, highly recommended. Aaah. I'm also highly considering blowing more money than I would spend in a shop on a couple of T-shirts of tinternet and the shipping costs. I just want them, ok? I'm going to be living in jeans and T-shirts, so clearly I will need T-shirts, and I think I can justify an extra £20 if they make me smile when I have nothing else in my approaching life of poverty. That's my list; a laptop, chocolate and some nice T-shirts. That's all I need to live on.
And tomorrow, I get to see some fishies! I'll have to actually get out of bed at a normal time to get to London, but I'm sure it will be excellent fun, and I hope the weather forecast holds.
But, I don't know. My life is about to take a big change, whatever happens. I guess its kinda like being on a rollercoster that pauses at the top of a huge drop. We've been climbing this for years and years, and our exams were months ago, and we can see the edge before the fall and the twists and turns that everyone has said is really exciting and fun, but honestly just look pretty scary here. And I'm stuck here, paused, for another 2 and a half days. It's agonising.
I've picked my laptop though. I'm still checking a couple more websites to see whether I can get it the same but cheaper anywhere, but I'm pretty happy with the price and model I''ve found already, so I think I'll order it soon. I'd like to get it before September preferably, because I want to do some serious writing in September.
I need to look up student bank accounts. God, can I please just be a student already? I clearly think I am.
I suspect in hindsight, this will turn out to be one of the stranger times in my life.
My deadline for making a decision about my uni offers is May 4th. As it stands, I'm going to put Cambridge as my firm. It's m insurance that I'm more confused about. I've pretty much ruled out Leeds and KCL because I don't really like the course at Leeds and I don't want to live in London. So that leaves Durham and Cardiff.
[For those reading this that may not understand the way you apply to university in the UK, you apply to five unis, they give you an offer or a rejection, then if you hold two or more offers you pick one as your Firm and one as your Insurance, declining any others. Then when you get your exam results in August if you have met the conditions of your Firm, you go there. If you have not met the conditions of your Firm but you have of your Insurance, you go there. If you have not met either of them, you can go into Clearing, where you scramble to get any spare places.]
The thing is, I went to Durham on Monday and the place is gorgeous, really lovely, and the course is really good; mainly compulsory in the first year with one option that can be taken from inside or outside the department. Its such a wonderful place. I didn't get into the college I applied for though, I got pooled to one quite far out; I was concerned about this, but after visiting the area I feel generally much more positive about the whole place. The main problem is though, that Durham is far more a contender for Firm than for Insurance. It's hard to explain, but it is really very similar to Cambridge, and it is asking for AAB rather than AAA. There was a time, a couple of months ago I suppose, when I was reall not sure I even wanted to go to Cambridge at all, and I thought maybe Durham would be a possible alternative.
So. Durham is a possible Insurance to Cambridge, because its offer is lower than Cambridge's, but only by one grade. So, if I went for Cambridge/Durham [not a ship, not a ticket... or is it?] and didn't get AAB I would go into clearing, or reapply all over again next year. And if I missed AAB but not one of my other offers that I declined, that would be rather rubbish, to say the least.
Whereas my other option is Cardiff. Cardiff is a more ordinary university, less respected than Cambridge or Duham, and it isn't collegiate or particularly old. It isn't really gorgeous, its pretty normal, a touch grotty in places, accomodation seems alright. It's normal. The course has more options in the first year, it's apparently known particularly for it Theology department, particularly its Eastern religions classes. And, you can do a whole third of the first year outside the department, which is quite cool, a bit like a minor I guess. I would probably pick up credits in Law, and that might help me later. Cardiff is such a lovely city though, pretty and Welsh, big and bus but friendly and safe and nice. And, y'know, the film Doctor Who and Torchwood there :D Eve Myles told me to go there.
More importantly though, the've given me a really low offer, BBC or 280 points.
I already have that.
So, if I put down Cardiff as my Insurance, I am totally safe from clearing/the possibility of crashing and burning and never going to uni anywhere, because if I get AAA I go to Cambridge and if I get anthing lower I go to Cardiff. I can't not get into it. And maybe it would relax me to know that these life changing exams, the most important exams I've ever faced [except possibly last years, I guess. And next years, of course] don't carry whether I'll go to uni at all, only whether I'll go to Cambridge.
I just, Insurance choices are meant to be your Insurance. I am totally capable of getting AAA if I work really really really hard. Its not impossible. But, if I miss it at all, I don't know that I should bet I would onl miss it by one grade. Because I have what amounts to an unconditional offer from Cardiff, and if I throw it away and then get ABB I am screwed. And, it would be lousy to be screwed with ABB because that is what I need for 3 of my 5 offers. It's perfectly respectable.
And so, whenever I think this, I think, It's probably sensible to go for Cambridge/Cardiff like I've been saying all along.
And the part of me that fell so in love with Durham wails inside me.
My UCAS form is finished and has been sent off, and I have now received a confirmation email from Durham and the all important SAQ from Cambridge.
Its kinda of weird- I was so scared of UCAS, but then it was ok, and over the last two weeks or so since I finished it I've been thinking it was actually alright. Now I'm having the exact same fear about the SAQ. I hope it also turns out to be alright.
Annoyingly, this means that I'm going to miss the photo and interview with the Oxford Mail that I organised, and so I not only won't be in the photo in the paper but won't be in the photo of them taking the photo that we have also organised. This is very very irritating [read: gutting] so Cardiff better be awesome.