On Tuesday 22nd January I packed my (slightly overweight) bag and boarded an eighteen-hour flight to Doha on Qatar Airways. I made it onto my flight to Edinburgh with not a lot of time to spare but I had a whole row to myself, so I made a makeshift sky couch and had a really good sleep.
When I arrived in Edinburgh it was 6am and NEGATIVE FOUR DEGREES! I had a whole carry-on bag full of warm clothes to put on… I wish I had more. I made it to Leuchars station, pronounced Luke-ers (I wish someone had told me), and got a taxi to Andrew Melville Hall where I’ll be living for the semester.
I got shown to my room which is on the bottom floor. I unpacked a bit and then decided to try and fight the jet lag and go for a walk. It was so fun walking on frozen mud and puddles that were completely solid! I walked back to my room and accidentally had a 9-hour nap! This meant that I missed lunch and dinner, but I was so tired that it was worth it!
I went to the orientation lecture/talk and ended up sitting next to a lovely German exchange student. The talk went through lots of really important information about how things work in St Andrews and the only thing that I remember them saying was that the Thai restaurant at the end of Market street is really good. After lunch back at the hall we were divided into smaller groups and got a tour of the town! The guide told us about some of the crazier St Andrews traditions including the annual shaving foam fight and some of the various ways to cleanse yourself of academic sin which include running around St Mary’s quad three times naked backwards on the hour when all the classes are changing over and the May dip when you run into the north sea on the first day of may at sunrise!
Some quick final notes, Gingernuts here are so much better than NZ gingernuts, UK plugs are huge, scots are not as angry as their reputation suggests (people are so friendly!), snow is very fun and hall food definitely isn’t as bad as I was told it would be, it’s a bit carb/potato heavy but that’s not a bad thing…at all.