Unconditional

Posted by on Dec 4, 2014 in News

Hello everyone!

First news item. At first I thought I’d keep my website pretty much as it is. A portfolio to showcase my work. However, I think it’s also nice to engage with people. Especially when people enjoy your work and who you are. I also want this website to become a bit more active, rather than just a showcase. So let’s start with the story.

I went to London on the 25th of November, at night. It was very cold in Rotterdam while I was waiting for the Megabus to arrive. During the night I mostly listened to music and envisioned myself having an interview. I tried to think of questions they’d ask me. Why would I want to study in England? Why would I want to even try? Fear made its way through my body, thinking I wasn’t good enough. It’s the artists’ curse really. On the ferry, I played some arcade games, tried to find a place to sleep, but the same thought occurred to everyone else, therefore there was no place for me anymore. Around 5 in the morning, we reach the port of Dover, get back in the bus and drive to London. It was a foggy morning and this is how I was taught to see London. A foggy, cold and mostly wet city. My actual experience with London is mostly sunny and a higher temperature than Eindhoven. Arriving at London Victoria, I make my way to a café and get myself a hot chocolate to warm up. My train towards Brighton would leave in a few hours and the cold was finally getting to me. Not to mention the lack of sleep. In the train I was looking for power sockets, but there weren’t any. I had gotten spoiled by the trains running from Swindon to Bristol. Arriving in Brighton, I saw my transfer would take another hour, so I went to ‘The Cyclist’ pub. How appropriate. I ordered the cheapest tea I’ve ever had and I couldn’t even finish it! It was an entire teapot and absolutely delicious, but just too much. On the platform to my train I nearly slipped as the humid air and rain had made the platform slippery. After a few stops I arrived at Goring-by-sea, and followed the way to Northbrook College. I wasn’t nervous, but I wasn’t chill either. Upon entering the school, I started to feel more nervous and wondered why I would do this. I checked in at the reception and had to wait.

I got called forward, and the first thing he tells me is:

“I’m so glad you didn’t dress up for this.” while he was covered in plaster stains.

Instant relief. He was kind and made me feel at the right time at the right place. We started talking and he felt like someone I’ve known for a while rather than someone I never met before. He assured me that everyone on the course had their things. They were gamers, LARP-ers, Cosplayers and he was a LARP-er as well. Seeing the workshops, wood, metal, plaster and other just made me feel right at home. It was as if I had closed a door behind me and finally found the place where I should be. This is home to me. Then it was time for the interview and he loved my work. We laughed a lot and shared stories. In the end, I left with a good feeling and would hear the next day whether or not I’d get an offer or not.

The moment I close the door behind me I’m suddenly filled with doubts. What if I said something wrong? What if I made a mistake? What if I blew it? I had experience with this situation, and sadly, it didn’t improve my faith in instances. I’ve had too many employers toy with my faith, tell me everything was fine and then kick me out. I had too many interviews telling me all was good, but they didn’t choose me. And the few that did always surprised me. The next few hours would be spent in the wet cold and I was very aware of the fact that fatigue could set in anytime soon. By now I had been awake for more than 30 hours and tried to let go of the thoughts that clouded my mind. In the train I felt myself nodding off, but I couldn’t actually sleep. Back in London, I got myself some dinner and then made my way to London Victoria again. I get back into the bus and another 10 hour journey is ahead of me. By now I figured I’d get the answer of Northbrook College before I even get home. The bus was less full this time and I had power sockets that worked, which was nice. This time on the ferry, I made myself at home near the staircase and curled up against the wall, a place where no one really hung around. I didn’t get any sleep, but at least I rested.

Arriving in the morning in Rotterdam where it wasn’t as cold this time was surreal. ‘Yesterday I was in England..’ went through my head. And I knew that I had no rest ahead of me. On the train to Eindhoven I checked my mail, but still no sign of the university. By the time I got home and closed the door behind me, I had been awake for 50 hours. I greet my cat, and she meows lovingly. I lay down on the couch to relax a little and have a little nap. But I always forget that I’m one of those people that cannot nap. I am a restless person, if I try to nap on times that are not at night, my body goes all awry. My cat laid next to me, purring. It calmed my heartrate a little and I decided to go upstairs and check my e-mail.

There it was.

“Congratulations, you have been given an offer for Northbrook College, check on UCAS what the conditions are.”

I opened UCAS and that’s when I learnt I had an unconditional offer.

Unconditional. I didn’t know what that meant, other than I am in. I don’t know how rare it is for someone to get an unconditional offer. But I got what I wanted. I got in. Such a relief had been absent from my life for a long while. But also happiness, for I had made it.