March 24th, 2009


Table Time

Someone somewhere slipped up and we don't have our exam timetables yet when everyone seems to. With my fellow Berlin class students discussing when they finish, it is rather irritating not to know the same myself. Or if I have clashes. I will have 7 exams (Berlin, Grammar, Oral, Listening, GDR Lit, Holocaust, Translation), so the possibility is there.

...of course I have to get there first. I have slightly less time before my dissertation deadline than I thought. I'm seeing Dr Muhs about it tomorrow, and I am certain he's going to be extremely disappointed in me given I am so far behind with it than I am basically sacrificing my grade. I do have reasons, but I remain convinced they are not good enough. April will be a mad rush of work, I feel, especially if he wants me to do the essays I haven't done, which technically are necessary to qualify for the exam. I'd have to rush them, since they don't count, but it would mean less time for my dissertation. I just feel over and over again that I'm in such deep trouble I cannot get out, which makes actually doing the work seem even harder than it should be, despite wanting to do it and get it done...

Seeing someone at the Health Centre about it very soon, see if they can suggest anything. I am so embarassed with myself. I have let myself mess-up so so badly. If I have cost myself a First, then I fully deserve it.

And it's clear things are coming to a head. This is my last week of lectures ever, or at least as an undergraduate. My biggest course, the Berlin course, ended yesterday in a 3-hour coup-de-force after which we went to Crosslands and all had drinks. I was suspiciously sober after two Malibus and cokes and a glass of Pimms, since I hadn't eaten anything for most of the day. We had a fun time, the most memorable part being making fun of a guy dressed as an 19th-century soldier, and asking him questions including 'why?', 'do you have a girlfriend?' and 'do you fancy Richard Sharpe?'. He won, though, since not only did he answer honestly ('yacht club social', 'no' and 'no') but he then got most of us to sign up for the yacht club mailing list with an interest to join. Although he clearly does not fancy Sean Bean.

But more poignantly, this is the end of my degree, or at least the teaching phase. I still remember my first seminar in October 2005. A lifetime ago. No, that's rubbish. Several lifetimes ago. Now all is coming to an end. My dissertation, my exams, and then freedom somewhere around the middle of May. If I didn't feel that I'd screwed-up so badly, I'd be feeling curiously optimistic.

The weather is absolutely divine again, after yesterday's wind and rain. I continue to feel that I am squandering it, although I did go for a nice wander through the woods on Sunday afternoon. The bright sunlight and blossom outside is lovely...although it does remind me that I need to be inside, working. Working hard. I'm in trouble.

The Exammy Nation

Sooo, I finally have my timetable.

Monday 27th April - Finalisation of Dissertation. Possibly the most stressful day of my educational career. There's a Berlin revision class too, but I'm not sure I'll feel able to attend.
Tuesday 28th April - Hand in Dissertation in morning. Would spend afternoon celebrating and possibly drinking a lot but...
Wednesday 29th April - German Oral exam. Scary. But I know I'm not going to do amazingly, so I'll just try and be 'good' and not worry too much.
29/4 - 10/5: REVISE
Friday 8th May - German listening. This does not worry me too much.
Monday 11th May - Berlin. This is the big one, worth more than any of the other exams, and almost 4 hours long. Thank goodness I get do research beforehand, however...
Tuesday 12th May - Holocaust. Coming the day after Berlin is problematic. This one needs a lot of research as well, as does...
Wednesday 13th May - GDR Literature. At least this one I can blag if it comes down to it. In the afternoon, celebrate that the trio are over, but since Holly has exams on the 14th and 15th...
Friday 15th May - Celebrate the end of Exam Week and Holly's birthday. Drink a lot, probably.
Monday 18th May - Holly's birthday visit to Thorpe Park.
Thursday 21st May - Translation. Not really one I can revise for that much, and the same goes for...
Friday 22nd May - German Essays. But this is my last exam. Of my degree. This is the last nightmare before freedom. The evening will be crazy, and the weekend after will be burnout.

So at least I avoid a clash, even if my research exams are on three consecutive days. Had I done Romanticism instead of Holocaust, my 11th May would be Hell on Earth. I am really worried that all exams bar the Oral and Translation are at 9:30am. I am terrified I am going to oversleep, or at least wake up at 9:20 and have to rush to the exam with no breakfast or last-minute revision. I miss afternoon exams where you spend the morning in Cafe Jules revising over coffee...

Truth is, though, when it gets to the 29th, I will relax. This dissertation worries me more than any of the exams do, and is actually worth more than any of the exams as well.


We watched Death Mills in our last Holocaust seminar today. I spent most of the film looking at my notebook. One corpse is enough to upset me, let alone thousands. I really wanted to cry, but I was too shocked to do so.