Course, Free time

Halfway through my degree!

It’s pretty emotional actually. Where is the time flying? Anyway, 7,000/7,000 words have been written and I am almost there for January!

After many hours slaving away, and one 10 hour library session (okay, I admit I may have left for an hour to get dinner at the pub…), I finally finished my essays and handed them in on Wednesday. Second year is hard! I think it’s probably the pressure of doing well finally hitting because in first year you only have to, really, get 40% in everything and then it doesn’t count any more.

The titles of my essays are:

1.  The historian Nicholas Phillipson has argued that, Addison and Steele taught the public how to live ‘a life of virtue within commercial society.’ Examine the relationship between virtue and commerce in 2 of the following texts: The Tatler and The Spectator (you may count these works as a single text); Mandeville’s Fable of the Bees; Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.

2Critically assess how contemporary novels on England/Englishness appear to offer a commentary on political and social concerns such as devolution and surveillance.

3. Critically examine the ways in which narrative techniques are used to accentuate the effects of Gothic writing.


There’s nothing like a bit of coursework due in straight after Christmas to suck the joy out of returning to uni, but, let’s be honest, everybody’s in the same boat and it’ll all be worth it in the end when we finally get our degrees!

It’s just a shame I have an exam on Friday afternoon as well…

After that I will be free and I can’t wait to get stuck into semester two!

Free time, Travels

Glass Half Full …

Just wanted to wish everyone a Hapy New Year! (sorry it’s a bit late) I hope you live every second of 2012 to the full! No moment should go unnoticed.

Being back home for the Christmas Holidays has been really nice to chill with parents and bond with “old” friends. You really don’t know what you miss until it’s gone. I am extremely lucky to have these awesome people in my live and to be able to see them every time I come home. But leaving them is the hardest part. I have found now, where ever I go I will miss someone, but on the other side, where ever I go I will always be with friends.

The difficult thing about having two homes though is never having what you want, where you want it. The amount of times I have gone ‘ooh i could wear such and such with this, however it’s still in Portsmouth!’ Nightmare.

But other than that, home life is sweet! It’s just adjusting to the different lifestyles which can be the challenge.

Coursework, Free time

January of ’12

Yet again, I left everything till the last minute. I have three deadlines on Wednesday and hardly any work done. I’m dreading it. I can sense a couple of sleepless nights coming my way. Not to mention that I get easly distracted, which definitely doesn’t help.

On a more positive note, summer plans are looking good. I will write more about them as soon as things are confirmed 🙂

Now, I better crack on with work.

Free time, Island Experience, The city, Travels

The Island Experience: Hayling Railway Pillars

Christmas and the New Year provide a good opportunity to catch up with friends.

Yesterday I got together with a few such friends. I’ve known Sam and Tom since school, which already seems like a lifetime ago! We arranged to meet up in the afternoon for a cycle to Hayling Island, which lies to the east of Portsea Island (the island on which the city of Portsmouth is built). We cycled across the modern road bridge which connects Hayling Island to the mainland and decided to take in the sights by the old railway pillars. These are large blocks of wood which stick out from the sea, alongside the modern bridge. These are the remnants of a railway line which once took passengers to the tip of Hayling Island. You can still walk or cycle down the old route, which is known as the Hayling Billy Trail.

After some very civilised sightseeing from this vantage point, we took a slow route back. It had been a really nice sunny day, and the sunset on the horizon was a fantastic sight. We had all come well prepared with lights, as by 4pm it was already dusk – it’s easy to get caught out at this time of year in the dark.

I enjoy nothing better than a cycle with some great friends, and great scenery! Next time I’ll have to remember to take a camera and post some pics. Hayling has a good, although stony beach, so you might like to try it out during the summer. Here’s a pdf outlining the route all the way down to the seafront:

And here’s a quick map I created on site called

I started the route at the bottom of the Eastern Road in Portsmouth for easy reference and stopped at the point of the old railway pillars, where we stopped. The majority of the route is offroad.