Goodbyes are strange. Particularly when leaving a comfort zone for a world of uncertainty. Often these goodbyes are harder for other people than they are for you. I found myself supporting other people and assuring them that all would be fine- as if they were in my position! Although this is often easier than facing what lies ahead.
I had never left Ireland for more than a week. I had never been away from my family for more than three weeks. Suddenly I was heading for my first three month term at Cirencester.
The morning I was leaving I tried not to wake anyone but my mom, who was flying over with me. I hate goodbyes and could not deal with other upset people. Of course, the full sleepy-eyed Brady bunch came out in force to bid farewell! Here is a very unattractive picture of myself and the siblings that morning.
We arrived in Bristol from Dublin. I ended up arriving in the afternoon, a little later than planned. This was partially because of an almost hour delay in figuring out how the rental car worked using a button instead of a key. The poor rental assistant almost ended up driving me to Cirencester! Eventually we got on the road and made our way to the Royal Agricultural University. BTW Cirencester college is not the RAU… we made that mistake!
I arrived in the Tithe barn (student bar/n) with my pounds converted from money I earned working as receptionist to pay for the freshers social events. Mom dragged my three, huge, luggage bags up three flights of stairs to my room in George Wing while I frantically tried to make a few friends! I was the only person in my year after travelling over from Ireland and there were about 3-400 students in my year. Quite different to university life back at home! I can’t say I was particularly sold on the idea of university here at that point!
That first step of leaving home was the most difficult decision that I have made in my life so far. I have learnt that once you put yourself outside of what you are comfortable with you set yourself up to achieve your potential. Only you have to learn to accept what comes your way.