“When I miss home, I… ” Coping with homesickness

This week we asked our Instagram followers to share what they do when they’re missing home;

here’s what they said…

Getting out and about

“…Visit the Student Living Room”

Have you checked out your Student Living Room in Senate House? It’s the perfect place to sit back, relax and even play a game of Fussball.

“…Meeting up with people who speak the same language as me, or are from my home city”

Come along to our weekly Language Café and improve your skills, learn about other cultures and have fun!

“…Going out to eat”

Some of your favourite places for food included; meatballs at Ikea and Wok to Walk!

‘Me’ time

“…Cuddling up with a tea, hot water bottle and a movie”

“…Taking part in sports to keep my mind busy”

There’s a great range of activities suitable for all abilities; take a look at our B:Active timetable.

“…Listening to music that reminds me of home”

“…Distracting myself by doing things I love – reading, baking and gaming”

Want to read your book in peace? Check out the relaxation spaces on campus. Surround yourself with bean bags, cuddly toys and make yourself at home.

“…Cooking a meal that reminds me of home”

Home comforts

“…Calling or Skype-ing my loved ones”

“…Looking through family photographs”

“…Washing my clothes in the same washing powder my family uses at home, for a familiar scent”

Student settling in guide

Customise your bedroom and make it your own

Moving away from home can be really daunting and there’s really nothing that will comfort you more than a cozy bedroom! Obviously feel free to splash out in Wilko (it’s a rite of passage) but be sure to bring a home comfort to make you feel settled like a photo or cuddly toy.

Explore Bristol

Bristol is such a cool and exciting city, full of hidden gems. Take full advantage of what the city has to offer in terms of food, music, art and shopping. Especially if you live in halls of residence further out such as Stoke Bishop.

Do some exercise

With all the takeaways, boozy nights and free rein over choosing your own meals, it is understandable if you’re feeling a bit out of shape. You’ll need to cope with Bristol’s hills somehow, so perhaps try an exercise class or join the gym.

Finding a house for your second year

Finding a house for your second year can be a stressful situation. There may be disagreements, awkward phone calls and you may even get ghosted by your letting’s agent after the first email. But you will get through it and find a nice place to live with your best mates, and it will all be worth it in the end. You will be fine!

Try something new

It might be cliché but with no parent or teacher encouragement, it is up to you to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Try to go to socials, meetups or join a society that could help you develop a new skill. What’s the worst that can happen? If you completely hate it, you never have to go back!

Not a fan of clubbing?

If you’re not a drinker, or just not keen on nights out, there are plenty of events to keep you entertained in the evenings. There are lots of great pub quizzes but my favourite non-clubbing night is a Tuesday evening of jazz and funk music at Mr Wolf’s. You can still dance if you want to!

Feeling like you haven’t met your lifelong friends yet?

If you aren’t getting on as well as you’d have liked with your flatmates, remember that there are so many other ways to meet people. Join societies and chat to people on your course but equally try not to be dismissive of people who you wouldn’t necessarily normally hang out with, you might get on.

If you’re struggling, tell someone

University can be overwhelming – don’t suffer in silence. Most things that seem monumental can be solved, but don’t forget that university isn’t necessarily for everyone. If you’re unhappy, there’s always someone you can talk to [Editor – Did you know that our Wellbeing Access Service is a useful route in to the support you need – you can call, email or submit an online form] Or you could even consider your other career options. (No shame in taking a gap yaaah.)

Stay safe and healthy

Freshers’ flu will be inevitable, but take the time to nurse yourself back to health and definitely sign up to the Student Health Service. Don’t forget that university is supposed to be fun so if you’re feeling uncomfortable or unsafe, tell someone. Look after yourself!

Give yourself a break

At the end of the day, university can be stressful, and you’ve done so well to get into such a good one. When things go wrong (and they will!) don’t beat yourself up about it. You haven’t quite done all your reading? get some sleep and do some more the next day. Woke your house mates up after accidentally locking yourself out? Apologise and move on. Give yourself a break, we’ve all been there.

Written by

This weeks blog has been written by Orin Carlin, a second year Classics (BA) student.

 

Still looking for more things to do when you are missing home? Take a look what our student Instagram followers said.

Top five student cafés!

As a student, there is no better place to immerse yourself in café culture than Bristol. From local favourites to coffee specialists – even a toilet-turned-café – University of Bristol students are spoiled for choice! Regardless of the vibe you’re going for, you are bound to find a café that appeals to you, which is what I’m here for.

Below are the key factors I focused on while making this list:

  • Proximity to the main campus
  • Quality and inclusive menu
  • Great service
  • Student discounts

While this list is in no way definitive, here are the top cafés that I would definitely recommend:

Primrose Café – The Tried and True

Tucked away in a corner on Boyces Avenue in fashionable Clifton, you can hardly go wrong with Primrose Café. Having operated for nearly 25 years, it has become a firm favourite among local residents and unsurprisingly so. Their brunch menu is absolutely mouthwatering with tasty vegetarian and vegan alternatives available. If you’re still feeling peckish after that, they also have  a gorgeous selection of cakes to choose from. Good-time, guaranteed.

Mrs. Potts Chocolate House – Chocolate Heaven

Brownies, cupcakes, cookie sandwiches, home-made marshmallows, chocolate fondue; you name it, it’s available! It is definitely one of the best places to get your chocolate fix in Bristol. I personally recommend their vegan brownie drizzled with warm chocolate sauce (you can also add a scoop of vanilla ice cream; I won’t judge!) Grab a plate and sit by the window overlooking College Green to people watch, or enjoy a rewarding self-care session in their courtyard.

East Village Café – The Secret Garden

Have a sudden cake craving that needs satisfying ASAP? East Village Café will fix you right up. Situated under a gorgeous arc at the entrance of charming Boyces Avenue, this café will transport you into a calm retreat despite being only a 12-minute walk from the Triangle. They offer an amazing array of Instagrammable – but more importantly – delicious baked goods. Plus, everything on their menu is vegetarian!

The Epiphany – The VSCO Dream Aesthetic

The half-tiled walls. The abundance of potted plants. The neon lights spelling the café name. The huge windows spilling light onto the interior.

Almost every inch of the Epiphany is aesthetically pleasing (even the baristas)! Situated inside the RWA, this rather hidden café is sure to charm you with its extensive menu and multitude of sweet treats on the counter.

Two Ways – The Coffee Beast

That café next to the bike shop opposite the Beacon House bus stop? This is it. What you may not know is that this café sells amazing coffee ranging from exotic Turkish coffee to your classic favourites like a latte or Americano. Two Ways pride themselves for their Italian and Turkish background which is reflected in their menus and daily specials. So go ahead and get your caffeine fix before that 9.00 am lecture!

Honourable Mentions

Bristol is so overflowing with cafés that it was a mammoth task to compile this list. Ultimately, different people have different opinions so your top five may include some places I haven’t mentioned. You may also have noticed that I did not include chains and franchises in the list as I can’t guarantee consistency of quality across all their outlets. To counter this, I’ve listed some equally amazing cafes below that did not feature:

  • Caffe Nero, Queens Road
  • Pinkmans
  • Caffe Clifton
  • The Cloakroom

Written by Iskandar Bin Suhaimi

Iskandar is a second year international student studying Law. As well as spending his free time hunting down Bristol’s finest cafes, he’s a member of both of Bristol’s Malaysian societies and Music Theatre Bristol.

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