Happy 2016 y’all (my subtle attempt at assimilation). So I’m now back at UNC and have started part 2 of my American adventure, or slightly less dramatically: semester 2. It felt a little bit odd being back at first because so many of my friends were only here for a semester and left (how rude of them, I know). Fortunately there are plenty of new exchange students for the spring semester, and since they know nothing I get to play Mr. Miyagi to their Karate Kids, which is a nice change from my usual clueless idiot role. One of these protegés is my new roommate Sophie, who’s English and studies at King’s College. That’s right, I can now report back on the experience of having a roommate! I didn’t have one last semester, but now I’m having the full American college experience. I was a little bit iffy about it when I first found out I would be getting a roommate this semester because I’d gotten used to having my own space, but it’s actually worked out really well. First and foremost, she’s not a psychopath, except maybe for that time she made me go to the gym at 9am. Plus, she’s also messy, so there’s no tension over that. In fact, we get along so well that morphing into the same person is a legitimate concern of ours. I generally like having a lot of alone time, so I was a bit worried on that front, but it’s actually nice to always have someone there to talk to. On the other hand, when we want alone time, you’d be amazed how well not talking, and not looking at each other works. Sometimes we forget the other person is even in the room, it’s a foolproof strategy, trust me. Anywho, here’s a picture of me and my roommate, bonding (sorry it’s blurry, classic night out photo):
In other news, I just experienced the shortest winter of my life. Literally, it was about three days long. On the day I went home in December it was 18 degrees, so winter hadn’t really started yet. Then, a couple of weeks ago the temperatures started dropping below zero (well a couple of degrees anyway), and I had my first snow day since… I can’t remember when. The whole experience was kind of bizarre though. Class was cancelled before it had even snowed just based off the forecast, and everyone was freaking out and stocking up on food. I kept getting emails about “adverse weather” and notifications that campus was under “condition 2”. It was all very dramatic, even though it only snowed about 5cm. They semi-unironically called it Snowpocalypse 2016. Apparently it happens every year, but they never prepare for it or try to clear the roads very much. It started making sense to me when it was all over three days later, easier to just wait it out! Also I appreciate that they cancelled class right away. Anyway here’s me and some friends enjoying the snow, taking credit for a snowman we didn’t actually build, and doing the traditional UNC snow pose in front of the Old Well.
Today, just a week and a half later, it was 22 degrees (celsius that is, I haven’t assimilated that much), and here I thought Glasgow weather was unpredictable. My reaction was near to the classic Glaswegian one of spriiiing TAPS AFF, but I’m not sure winter is actually over, it’s probably just lulling me into a false sense of security and will return in full force next month. Sorry to ramble on about the weather but I’ve become a wee bit obsessed, forewarned is forearmed and all that. In more exciting news, I went to my first proper basketball game! Not sure if I’ve mentioned this before but this uni is a bit basketball mad, MICHAEL JORDAN WENT HERE, sorry that’s my go-to selling point. Anyway, the UNC Tar Heels are famous nationwide and ranked second nationally (does it sound like I’m bragging? because I totally am). The game was against NC State University, and we won (obvs) but it was just a great atmosphere overall: a lot of chanting, marching band, cheerleaders, the whole 9 yards. It was probably one of the most American things I’ve ever witnessed. They even played the American anthem, and the mascot Ramses had his hand over his heart, it was mind-blowing. Here’s a visual so you can get a sense of it.
LET’S GO HEELS!!! Sorry, I was overcome by Carolina fever for a moment there, but if Ramses doesn’t get you pumped to study at UNC I don’t know what will. As always, if you’ve got any questions at all, feel free to get in touch!