Feeling Nostalgic

26 10 2010

It’s that time of year again.

Well… not really… but it’s always a good opening line, so why not use it?

I miss Stellenbosch. Not that I’m unhappy with where I currently find myself. I couldn’t have asked for a better ‘job’ (read: internship, although ‘employer’ – OUP – is more accurate), and I am treated so well and praised so highly, I’m afraid that if I pinch myself, it’ll all be gone – *poof* – just like that.

But still I miss it. I miss getting up early on a Sunday morning and walking down deserted, quiet Victoria Street, watching the rustle of the leaves no matter what the season, and that sense of eerie calm that only seems to exist on a Sunday.

I miss listening to the hundreds of birds chirping as you walk from the residence past Wilgenhof’s tennis courts and across Victoria Street on your way to class. The occasional squirrel, sometimes even in the tree right outside my 4th year res room window. English seminars and creative writing classes. Cups of coffee and big splashy rain puddles. Post-essay/ assignment relief, feeling sleepy while reading articles for our theory class, and being way ahead with research and deadlines.

Yes, back then, I still drank coffee.

It’s been almost 11 months since my last cuppa.

All this comes back to me every time we go to pick my sister up from or drop her off at her (no longer ‘my’, not really) residence. It’s absolutely scary to think that a year has passed since I was last there for my own academic purposes rather than that of my first year sister. She started with her final exams yesterday, and by the 17th of November, she will have finished with the first year of her four year course.

My little sister, through her first year of university.

It’s almost hard to believe…

Perhaps that’s why I feel slightly nostalgic – not for my student days, so much, although I wouldn’t mind to have had the luxury of doing my Masters, but just the beauty and rhythm and vibrancy and much-ness of Stellenbosch.

Two of the girls I studied with have already gotten married. A third one is set to tie the knot this coming Saturday. After that, I’m next. Four of us got engaged last year, and I’m wondering how the rest of the group are doing. Some are doing their Masters, others are pursuing different courses (academic or no), and one is even overseas, studying at the esteemed York after being accepted there.

And me? I’m working at a publishing house where people (over-)value my work, even if it took me 8 months of sitting at home doing nothing to get here…

Yet once, just once more, I’d like to walk across the Rooi Plein with my hazelnut coffee and huge cookie from DCM, listening to the birds chirp and watching the squirrels gambolling (yes, I am now attributing the action to squirrels instead of kittens, but it’s close enough) as I smell the sweet leaf-scattered air of my once-upon-a-not-so-long-ago campus.

That’s not too much to ask… is it?

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