I went to University seventeen years ago. To anyone who has just emerged slightly broken from Freshers week that must sound like a lifetime ahead.
To those who share my forehead creases, well, they know it was only moments ago.
It feels like a few months ago that I played British Bulldog at midnight in minimal clothing whilst toying with the idea of skinny dipping in the cold Brighton sea. It feels like yesterday when my sole aim in life was to improve my Mario Kart score and to massacre my house mate on Hogs of War.
University days, were literally some of the best days of my life. I made some tremendous friends, lifelong friends and tasted new, and occasionally stupid experiences, every day.
As age has changed me and altered my perspectives I look back with a bemused gaze to when we looked for a new home to live in during the second year, and the main criteria that we had to have two homes within spitting distance to fit all our friends in. For this reason I lived in a house for a year that grew mould like gardens grew grass, and where the bathroom tiles would fall in on your naked body when you sat in the bath. I miss having my friends living just down the road although my standard of living has improved.
Summer days were spent on the beach, beer in hand surrounded by laughter, soaking up every second of youth without ever appreciating what we had. Sundays were spent watching Toy Story for the millionth time, smoking cheap cigarettes that were found filthily stubbed out on abandoned food plates. We lived in squalor but were far too busy out having fun to care. We went paintballing for fun, did endurance courses under protest. Played practical jokes whenever we could and spent so many days laughing till we cried.
And we fought, life was not always perfect, my house mate refused to speak to me for days when I cleared the house of football paraphernalia during the World cup. I learnt my lesson and now know that living with three boys equipped me well for marriage to the football mad he who helped create them.
We saw each other fall in and out of love, we held each others hands when life felt rocky, we threw surprise birthday parties and drank moody pints.
It was a time I will never forget, but owing to the alcoholic consumption that accompanied many of our nights there are occasions I simply cannot remember.
But it was fun, so much fun and friendships were made that I cherish dearly to this day.
We aged and scattered to different parts of Britain, we got proper jobs, some of us had kids; we unite for weddings, and occasional weekends spent hanging from trees. Sometimes it can be years in between meetups, and if fate is on our side a matter of weeks.
Time is irrelevant with these types of friendships. Within moments of the ‘hello hug’ the years fade away and I see the kids we once were and note the bond has only got tighter.
University days were the best because of the people I spent it with.
This one is for them.