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Coming home from uni for Christmas - expectations vs. reality

05 Dec 2016

So you’ve done it – you’ve survived your first semester of university. You didn’t die of freshers’ flu, you showed up to at least half of your 9am lectures, and you even made it to the supermarket every now and again

Now you’ve handed in your first term’s coursework and you’re well and truly ready to head home for Christmas. It’s time for some comfort food, TLC and a break from having to remember to do your washing.

You can’t wait to catch up with your friends from home, you’ve got some serious nostalgia for that old man pub you used to go to every Friday night, and you reckon a change of scenery can really help you to get that essay written that’s due in January.

But what really happens during winter break might be a little bit different from what you expected…

Expectation - You'll definitely wear the 15 jumpers, 8 pairs of shoes and 12 tshirts you brought home

I mean, you need at least ten going out outfits, and a few things in case you just go to the pub, and something to wear on Boxing Day at Auntie Betty’s and what if you end up going sledding? Better bring an extra jumper. And a hat. And four pairs of gloves.

Reality – You’ve lived in your onesie for a fornight


Expectation – You’ll get to see sooooo much of your mates!

So you’ll do a night out the first Saturday back, brunch on the Sunday, a shopping trip midweek, cinema, drinks on Christmas Eve, swap presents on Christmas Day morning, and obviously catch up on Boxing Day…

Reality – Your Mum has a strict visitation schedule to ensure you see every single member of your extended family at least three times.


Expectation - You and your home friends will have loads to catch up on

You can’t wait to tell them that hilarious story about the night at the student’s union with the yoghurt, and oh my god they will just love hearing about the crazy guy who lives on your floor, and what about that time you forgot your library card?! So.Much.Bant.

Reality – Everyone is so sick of your “you had to be there” stories

Expectation – It will be so good to visit your old haunts

The pub you always used to go to, the one club in your town, the shopping centre – you’ve missed it all so much!

Reality – It’s all so expensive, you have to take taxis everywhere and you keep running into people from high school


Expectation – You could never, ever get sick of free food, free heating and free laundry

A fully stocked fridge! Dinner consisting of more than just a Pot Noodle! Not needing to wear your bobble hat to bed! 

Reality – You have to be home by midnight, help around the house and you can't scroll through your phone during dinner


Expectation – After the New Year festivities, you will definitely, definitely get loads of work done. 

Seriously. You’ll definitely get that essay finished before you go back to uni. Definitely.

Reality – You realise a week before you're due back that you left all your important notes in your flat


Expectation – You definitely won’t be able to cope without your uni friends for a whole three weeks

You need to know the gossip about Laura’s friends from home and what Sarah decided to get her Mum for Christmas and whether Jamie really did dump his girlfriend the week before Christmas. 

Reality – It’s just so good to be back home!


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