Tag Archives: student

Back to the City


I had my first bus-no-show this morning, I know I’m back in Glasgow. I was attacked by Seoras today, more than once. I know I’m back. I had bacon and scrambled egg brunch, I know I’m back. I had a wonderful, relaxed, chatty evening with Fiona, its so good to be back! I can hear planes, and buses, and buzzers, and Glaswegians, and SPANIARDS on the bus, and CATALANS in the library; I must not be in Lewis! I have an essay deadline, come on, I’m only just back! I need a hug, I don’t want to be back 😦 I’m getting into routine, makes it easier to be back. There’s no Alison in Uni, or even in Glasgow these past 2 weeks- something is not quite right about being back! But back I am, for the final year, hurrah! But I might not be smiling in 2 months, or 6! Busy times ahead, but a good busy.Seoras and the oliphant


end of junior honors


It has been a while since my last blog, which says more of how life has been than any words I may have written! BUSY!!! But now, I have no such excuse, and can once again enjoy spending some time in sharing with you. Just now (Thursday) I’m sitting on the ferry, conveniently beside a power socket, typing away as we leave Ullapool. I’m on my way home for the summer! This Junior Honors year has fairly flown by, but I am definitely in need of home and a break from studying. After exams over the past month, I find I  can no longer even write properly (just as well this is typed, otherwise you would definitely struggle to make sense of my writing!). The sky has cleared and the sun come out to welcome me home. The weather and scenery, with low, misty clouds; sudden heavy showers and snow still lying on the higher hills shows how winter is unwilling to leave us this year. Even south in Glasgow it has turned cold again this week after a wonderful, summer-like weather last week. Despite the length and stiffness of the journey up the road on the bus and then the ferry, I do enjoy it. It helps to ease the transition back into island life. When I fly home, I need a few hours after landing just to get used to the idea of being back home. I love watching the change from lowland to Highland, Highland to sea, sea to home. Where else would you want to be?!! I get more excited with each stage, and I miss that with the plane. So, I‘m enjoying my journey today, apart from being a bit sgìth/tired. I think its going to be a lovely crossing as well, we’ll see what if I change my mind in a bit when we’re in the open Minch!

The Easter holidays flew by. My classes finished before the holidays, so I ‘only’ had exams to go back to. Despite good intentions, there’s always good intentions, I didn’t get much revision done during the holidays. A week was spent at a Free Church Youth Camp as a leader, this one a Gaelic camp for P5-S2 children. It was a short 5 day camp, but we squeezed a lot in, including a visit to the Highland Wildlife Park, now home to Mercedes the polar bear. We saw her a few years ago in Edinburgh with another camp group, and the difference in her enclosure is amazing, seems almost ten times the size! There was an added adventure on the way home from camp. Something on the ferry broke down, so myself and Ruairidh and one camper who was going back to Lewis with us stayed over the Sunday until Monday to get back. We also had some more snow at the beginning of the holidays. It wasn’t heavy this time, in Lewis anyway, and only lasted about a day, so all the new flowers were allowed to grow some more and brighten our days. After such a long, cold winter ( I know some of you will be scoffing at that statement in comparison to your own climates, but it really was more extreme than we have recently been used to) spring and summer, with warmth and sunshine have come very suddenly for me. But I’m putting away the woollies and getting used to the idea!

The past month has been centred around studying and exams really, with plenty of study breaks of course! Cups of tea, either on your own in the small hours, in the library, or out with friends, are so helpful when you’re faced with books and note-taking. I’ve been taking some snaps with my mobile phone camera of random bits of ‘study-time’.

Some of the other photos you see here show a wee bit more of the past month(s): enjoying the Castle Grounds in Stornoway in the Spring; experimenting with wedding invitations (we’re making our own); spring cleaning therapy, including sorting out our linen closet in the flat, is my relaxation of choice after exams (I know…weird!). There’s also a few (quite a few!) snaps of my engagement ring, but I can’t help it! Even though Colin took some proper ones with his fancy-dan camera, I can’t help it when it looks so pretty in certain lights etc. All I can say is that its a beautiful ring (moran taing Ruairidh :)) so I’m going to enjoy it! I made it home for a couple of days in the middle of April for my cousin Stuart and Diana’s wedding. It was a lovely day, you can see some more on Colin’s flickr page (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cjc/) and mine (http://www.flickr.com/photos/peigi_pest/). Most of us ended up taking photos with one of Colin’s cameras at some point during the day, so its an interesting mix! It also means I’m short of a lot of the ones I took-I forgot to take them of the camera before I gave it back to him! Anyway, you can view the collection on his page.


During my last week in Glasgow, I went with some girls from church to a Spanish tapas restaurant in the West End, just off Byres road. I had noticed it the week before and was eager to try it out, see how it compared to the real deal! And I was so chuffed when the girls suggested going there. It was really nice, close enough to what I was used to in Spain to keep me happy! I miss the people and the food from last year in Spain the most, so it was nice to get the taste buds going again. I’m tempted to go visit for a long weekend soon, we’ll see. This summer will be a busy one, between earning some pennies, relaxing, studying, camp, wedding organisation, and my friends Fiona and Roddy are getting married in August. I’m sure it will fly by!

still alive!


I hope you don’t think that I’ve dropped of the face of the planet, I’m still hanging on! I’m now at home for my Christmas holidays, I have a wonderful 5 weeks this time around, but I do have Uni work to do as well, and to be honest I’m looking forward to not being as hectic as I have been during this term at University. It took a wee while getting used to being back at University and studying after a year away. I’ve been pretty busy this semester with my language classes (speaking and written) for both Gaelic and Spanish as well as three other option courses: The Gaelic Novel and The Highland Clearances for Gaelic; and Catalan for Spanish. So I’ve been busy busy. Of these three only Catalan continues next semester (but I will have exams for all the options at the end of next semester) and I’ll be taking a Comparative Literature course (another option for Spanish) looking at Grimm’s and other European Fairy Tales. I’m looking forward to it, but I hope I don’t forget everything I’ve been doing this past term for the exams!

So far, its been Christmas as usual in Newmarket, apart from the unusual arrival of SNOW! We have indeed had a white Christmas this year, and its stayed, but mostly because it has all frozen over, more of an Ice Christmas now! So we’ve been staying to the house as much as we can, to avoid breaking our necks on the drive. Everybody is home again, which is noisy as usual with much annoyingness, but the new kitchen, sun lounge and shower room helps to spread folk around. It is actually possible to lose somebody in the house! There’s plenty of baking and big dinners, so we’d better all stay away from the scales for a while in case we get a fright!

I hope you are all enjoying a lovely festive season yourselves and I hope to be able to write again soon. You can of course keep up on flickr, with (although I’m way behind on photos too!) my page http://www.flickr.com/photos/peigi_pest/ and also Colin’s http://www.flickr.com/photos/cjc/

study begins


So, back to studies this week. Not a good start really, I discovered some clashes in my timetable between my two Honours subjects and we’re in the process of sorting them out.  Thankfully we managed to change a class time today, so, one down! I’m trying not to think too much  about the months and years to come, otherwise I think I might  be slightly overwhelmed! Once I get the first essay out-of-the-way I hope some of my studying skills will come back and keep me company, but right now I feel so out of touch.

My timetable is fairly filling up, I was under the illusion of less actual class time and more personal study for Honours, but it looks like it’s going to be a bit of both, this semester anyway. I have my cor language and oral classes for Gaelic and Spanish, as well as three classes of Catalan a week. It was really uplifting to hear some spoken Catalan in our class yesterday, that was the first Catalan I’d heard since leaving Spain. In a way I’m really glad of the opportunity to build upon the tiny foundation I gained during my time in Catalonia, but then I think of having to do three languages in one year, when I am far from mastering Gaelic after a lifetime, never mind Spanish. A very scary thought, but I keep thinking one step at a time and be glad to have the privilege and opportunity. At least it is a very interesting and rich language, it could be worse!

It’s good to be wandering around campus again, to be in a ‘normal’ atmosphere and day-to-day life after last year. I’m wanting to study again as well, which is a good sign. I think I might have been getting fed-up by the time third year came if I hadn’t had that year away. I have two Gaelic option courses this semester, one about the Gaelic Novel. We had our first class today and it promises to be interesting! The other is a History option focusing on The HIghland Clearances, starting next week.  My only Spanish option this semester is Catalan (enough!;) ). I have less course options in Spanish as I have elected to write my dissertation next year under the Spanish Department. But fear not, I hope not to stray away from or exclude Gaelic. The main reason for this is that there were more appealing course options in Gaelic than in Spanish, and I knew that the Gaelic department would be very willing to help even if I was ‘officially’ under guidance from the Spanish Department. I’m still thinking about a dissertation topic, I’m sure I’ll keep you posted.

Well, you’ll be fed up with all this study talk, but unfortunately that’s all that’s going on at the moment for me! I’ll try to do something exciting during the next few weeks for you to read about!