Easter Term 2011 – Part 2 – The End (of The Beginning)

August 25, 2011

OK, so this post is a little late arriving – let that speak only of just how busy the last several months have been!

Rough timeline from the end of the previous post (May 29th) to the present day (July 15th), in terms of week start-dates and the main activity:

May 30th: My final week of planned revision.

June 6th: Exam week plus Download Festival (exams on Tuesday 7th, Wednesday 8th and Thursday 9th) followed by Download Festival on Friday 10th, Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th – a huge change of circumstances in the space of a few days, from being very tightly wound to relatively carefree.

June 13th: The first part was spent doing pretty much nothing (it’s important to do that sometimes) – I was a bit ill after Download, though Download probably wasn’t the cause – more likely it was the culmination of having worked so hard, for so long, with so little rest. Very quickly I had to stop doing nothing, as I realised that with exams out of the way I could no longer defer finding somewhere to live (in the build up to exams, *everything* went on hold aside from revision and cycling). So the second half of the week saw me view a few potential houseshares, the official end of Easter Term, a birthday formal, and the Third Annual Cambridge University Cardboard Boat Race…

June 20th: May Week! At last! The main event for me was Downing May Ball on Tuesday 21st, though I also viewed another houseshare the day after. There was also the final Fitz Comp Sci Wine and Cheese social on the Monday, a missed punting trip on the Thursday, and a birthday meal on the Thursday. And on the Friday, a NatSci dinner, preceded first of all by results! They appeared on CamSis at around 2pm as I recall: I got a 2.i, which needless to say I am very pleased with.

June 27th: Grad week. At this point I was fed up of being messed around by potential housemates, and had intended to start the week by arranging viewings of apartments/flats. The daily Spareroom email flagged up a new houseshare that was to be available on Friday 1st (which was the date I’d need to move in if I was to avoid moving home for a few days first – which I was intent on doing). So instead I viewed that in the afternoon, liked what I saw, and went back to meet the other housemates in the evening. All was going well; we arranged to go to the letting agents the next day and do all the paperwork. Then I got a text later that evening saying they were going to let a few more people view it first, and could we do Wednesday. After previous experiences, this was enough to make me change my mind. Thursday saw me view two flats, one a studio and the other with one bedroom. I liked the former, and would have submitted an application on the Thursday had it not been for the fact I had one more viewing lined up for the Friday morning. But at 6:30pm that evening the agents for that viewing called to cancel, as it had been let. At this point my mind was made, and I would submit an application for the studio flat as soon as possible; complicated by the fact that the graduation dinner started at 7pm that evening. I elected to remain a bit more sober than I might otherwise have done, and went to sleep at a relatively early 2:30am; I later learnt that the partying continued until 4:30am. I was up at 7am or so, and at the letting agent for just after 9am, where I learned that somebody else had already submitted an online application overnight – which, had it not been for the graduation dinner, is what I would have done. I submitted mine anyway, as they would both be given to the landlord. About midday I got a call to let me know the landlord had picked mine – great, I now had somewhere to live! The rest of the day saw me arrange the move in date; July 8th, and then was spent with family, who had come down for the graduation weekend. Saturday was the actual grad day itself. It was a pretty awesome day. I probably don’t need to write much more – I can’t see myself forgetting it easily. Dare I say it, it was also pretty emotional – this was compounded by the fact that Fitz kicked grads out by 7pm, so half of the afternoon was spent loading the car up – which was no easy task, given the bulk of my computer, speakers & stands, and bikes. We stayed in a hotel overnight and traveled back on the Sunday morning.

July 4th: I finally bought Portal 2 on the Monday, having deferred doing so until after exams and then just being too busy to do so, and between playing that and lounging around doing nothing, had finished it by the end of Tuesday. Wednesday was a day of nothing, as also was Thursday. Friday saw me pack everything up and load it into a car once more, but this time for good; I drove down to Cambridge, picked up my keys, and moved into my own place. Friday and Saturday were mostly spent stocking the kitchen and unpacking. On Sunday I went swimming in Jesus Green pool.

11th July – present day: More flat-related admin; sorting out utilities, including internet, inventories and parking permits. Also various other things like getting my degree certificate framed, and finally customising my phone to my satisfaction; something I just had not had time for until now.

Tomorrow I drive back home, to go to Carcassonne with family for two weeks. This’ll be my first real holiday in two years, and I really need it!

[large gap due to more busy-ness – I didn’t publish this post when I got to end of that last sentence]

[the date is now August 25th]

The second two weeks of July were, as I said they would be, spent in Carcassonne enjoying a very nice and much needed holiday.

August 1st – present day and beyond: Working as a software developer, which is pretty cool, given that it’s what I’ve wanted to do for the last six years or so. Up until last weekend my flat didn’t have an office chair nor a good desk, and so although on the evenings that I’d sit down at the computer with every intention of doing productive things (like finishing blog posts), I’d just end up playing games, watching films, or reading books. I now have a decent desk and chair (bought from Ikea last weekend) and hence am now able to slowly but surely bring order to my life once again – and once that is done, I might start doing cooler creative stuff.

A large fraction of this post would be better as photographs, not prose, but in recent years I’ve stopped taking so many good photos as I prefer to focus on enjoying whatever the activity is that I would otherwise be photographing. Despite that, if I posted one I’d have to post an entire album, because there are so many that – although not good photographically –  do capture good memories.

Following on from the previous Easter Term 2011 – Part 1 post, here is the second half of Easter Term cycling.

Route Date Comments Cateye MyTracks CL Weather
North Cambridgeshire 12 01/06/11   Time: 1:27:28
Dst: 26.80m
Av: 18.4mph
Mx: 28.6mph
Av 30.31km/h ~18°C
North Cambridgeshire 13 03/06/11   Time: 1:26:01
Dst: 26.80m
Av: 18.6mph
Mx: 32.8mph
Av 30.58km/h ~23°C
North Cambridgeshire 14 20/06/11 There’s a 17 day gap between this and the last because in between I’ve had:
1) Three consecutive days of exams (finals!)
followed immediately by:
2) Three consecutive days on a not ideal diet at Download 2011
followed immediately by:
3) A week of cold-symptoms – presumably bought about by Download – and catching up on various bits of deferred admin. The result is a clear and significant reduction in average and maximum speed.
Time: 1:31:37
Dst: 26.88m
Av: 17.6mph
Mx: 24.9mph
Av 28.69km/h ~20°C
North Cambridgeshire 15 25/06/11 Time: 1:28:23
Dst: 26.73m
Av: 18.1mph
Mx: 27.0mph
Av 29.65km/h ~22°C  
North Cambridgeshire 16 26/06/11 Phenomenal weather; the hottest day of the year by far. Took 1.6L of water and had run out by Cottenham. Average as far as Swavesy/Willingham was hovering around 20mph; it came down a lot after that due to wind from the south (and possibly insufficient prior eating). Time: 1:31:32
Dst: 26.88m
Av: 17.6mph
Mx: 27.1mph
Av 28.74km/h ~28°C

Here is the Google Doc with all the stats: https://www.dhpiggott.net/assets/Cycling/Cycling-Log.html