Saturday 17th September. North Wales to Manchester. A new beginning.
Weeks of anticipation, planning, and preparation all led up to this day. Nervous, I unloaded the car, instantly regretting the masses of belongings I arguably believed I couldn’t leave at home. 4 suitcases full of clothes? I asked myself if it was all really necessary. Naylor 22, the second floor, room 7. Home for the next year.
Unpacked (minus the clothes), I said the emotional goodbyes to my parents, promising that I would speak to them later. Heading to the communal kitchen to meet the 12 new people I would be living with, the nerves kicked in. What would I do if I didn’t like them? What if we didn’t get along? Reassuringly I was greeted with open arms by the girl that I knew shared the same floor as me, my first real friend at university.
Hungry to experience the nightlife in Manchester and have my first adventure in the big city, I began getting ready to go out. Knowing that my friend from home, who lived in the flat next door but one was also venturing out, I decided to join her. After being shocked at the snaking queue to get into the night club ‘Factory’, we agreed to explore other places to go, ending up in a place called 5th.
Coming from North Wales, 15 minutes from the nearest city, Chester; Manchester was a whole new world. The two clubs ‘Rosies’ and ‘Cruise’ that Chester has to offer, began to get repetitive after religiously attending every weekend since my 18th birthday. The endless choice of bars and clubs in Manchester excited me and instantly made what home has to offer look dull and boring. Fresher’s week and the concept of going out every night of the week in a brand new city, fulfilled the party animal in me.
3 days into the move. Homesick. Hungry. Hungover. The reality that I actually had moved away from home, would have to cook my own meals, wash my own clothes and live independently hit me hard. Realizing how much I took for granted at home and that I could no longer afford to live the luxurious lifestyle I once had dawned upon me. Freshers flu creeping in, I found solitude in my flatmates, who I knew were going through the same situation and feeling the same emotions. Sitting at the communal kitchen table eating beans on toast for the second time in a row, laughing at the mischief from the night before, it appeared to me that these 12 people would be friends I would cherish for a lifetime.