April 17th, 2007

Time's Curse

Brilliant Sunshine

Is it supposed to be April or July? The sky is shades of azure, whilst a cool breeze sways the brilliant spectra of the flowers. As I went to the shops earlier, I couldn't help but marvel at it all. With the money now finally in my bank account, things seemed perfectly shiny. Everyone I passed seemed to be enjoying the sunshine. It's like Eden in April.

There are two shadows under all the sunlight. One is the approaching exam period. I'm confused as to how to approach it. I know that if I scour the library, I shall end up sitting there wanting to write far more than I can, even when I'm as strict with myself as I am under exam conditions. On the other hand, I'm not sure my notes will be enough. The exams I most need to revise for are still some way off, and it's hard to focus on them in such beautiful weather. For my GCSEs and A-Level exams, I tended to use a mixture of my photographic memory and my short-term memory, so about half of what I wrote was from reading up my notes within 24 hours of the exam, and half was from memories of classes taken some time before. I don't know if I can rely on that, but I'm scared of loading myself with too much. So we'll see. The first ones to worry about are German Literature and 19th Century Europe, but I have my German Oral first of all, so I'll need to practise my spoken German a lot over the next week or so. That's something different to the facts of theories of the history and literary exams.

The other shadow is something I'm sure you're all aware of. The shootings at Virginia Tech. I've noticed it's hit a lot harder with the Americans on my friends list (especially those at college) than the Brits, but in my case, it hit quite deep. Virginia Tech is a college in a town where students outnumber residents, and that reminded me of the situation here at Royal Holloway in Englefield Green and Egham. There are big differences, of course. VA Tech has about four times the number of students, and Blacksburg is a lot more remote than Egham. However, when I learnt that one of the classes that was almost totally massacred was the 9am German class...well, I felt affinity, as seperate as I am from all of it. On behalf of RHUL, I left a note of condolence on the Virginia Tech LJ community (along with many others, especially East Coast American colleges). Every time one of these shootings happens, I wonder what I'd do if one occured where I was, be it my old school, or here at RHUL. Yes, this is Britain, not America, and these kind of shootings are a lot rarer here (although not unheard of: Dunblane), but humans remain humans. I've heard people questoning the gun laws, and I'm not going to touch that debate as I don't want to meddle in things that aren't my concern (let America decide for itself). I've done some LJ seaching, and read personal accounts of what happened. Someone had posted a photo of the girl he danced with at a recent ball, asking if anyone knew where she was. Her name later showed up on the victims list. One of the German class. This is a crazy world.

I should be learning what Bundesland I'm going to placed in soon. My year abroad is so close now. Life is moving so fast. Even when I stop and look around me, at the cool breeze swaying the brilliant spectra of the flowers, that too suddenly is another dim memory. Facebook buzzes with information about all my friends doing this and that: I can't keep up. My laptop plays a certain tune, and fills my head with the elements of my life of a year ago, two years ago...I increasingly feel that, in this LJ, I am walking on the tracks of ghosts. Some of you I havn't spoken to in so long, even though I remember it clearly. The bandstand in Dunoon. Coffee shops in Manchester. Newcastle craft stalls. Birmingham art galleries. Amecon. Remote Norfolk barns. Mittenwald in a Bavarian February. Canary Wharf in a London June. Also...Gaia in 2004, AZUK in 2002, and of course Livejournal.

I oughn't focus on the past. It's sunny outside.