Life at UCB through the eyes of our international student bloggers

Urie Diaries: Spooky Weekend

Urie Diaries: Spooky Weekend

Hello and welcome to the second part of the Urie Diaries series! Today, I will be sharing with you my days that passed three weeks ago; without further ado, happy reading! 

Wednesday 27 October

I boarded the train a few minutes before the departure time, which was five o’clock-something in the afternoon. I booked for the latest train to avoid the risk of running late because I had to meet with my groupmates to discuss a project. However, to my shock, the gathering didn’t take as long as I expected. We met at ten in the morning and finished at noon. So, I had the whole four hours to spare, which I regretted. I could’ve arrived earlier that day… But what’s done is done, so… 

The trip wasn’t as tiring as before, and I don’t know what the difference was that day. I remembered the same time last year. I also travelled back home for Halloween, but I was exhausted. I collapsed on the sofa and couldn’t do any housework that night. (Sorry, Mum.)

Since I arrived late, it was around quarter to nine in the evening. My family and I didn’t get to do much other than eat dinner and watch a movie. Besides, my parents were working the next day, and I was tired from travelling, so it was an excellent choice to stay at home. 

Thursday 28 October

Since both of my parents were working, I ended up being left alone at home for a couple of hours, which I didn’t mind – I love having my own company. I didn’t do much that day… Most of the time, I remember being on my laptop, trying to polish up the article ready to be submitted the next day. 

I also re-filmed my video assignment for one of my modules. Weirdly, it was longer than my previous one. The limit was three minutes, and this video was three minutes twenty-seven seconds, which is way past the assignment limit of ten per cent. My first ever draft video was precisely three minutes, and I used the same script, by the way! So I was confused as to why it was longer. So I had to do more editing for that too. 

And with Halloween coming up, I decided to film a short TikTok video to reveal who I would be for Halloween. 

That day, it was only me in front of the laptop and my phone, just trying to get work done. 

Friday 29 October 

Again, both of my parents were at work as well. My Mum often has her break on Fridays but unfortunately, that Friday was different, and she had to work. I was once again left with my own company. I ended up filming a YouTube video intro for Saturday’s video, but it wasn’t too laborious; it was a quick shoot and edit. 

Since I didn’t have much to do that day and didn’t recall too much, I was basically on my laptop binge-watching a YouTube video from a channel called ‘Bellygom,’ a massive pink-velvety bear in Korea who pranks passers-by. (It’s sooooo cute! You should check it out!)

Saturday 30 October

There were two things on our list that night: 1) Go to a bookshop called Daunt Books, and 2) Watch a musical, either Phantom of the Opera or Prince of Egypt. But since tickets are pretty expensive, we didn’t expect too much and had a backup to watch the new James Bond movie in the cinema.

If you haven’t guessed already, I dressed as Joe Golberg from Netflix’s TV series called ‘You,’ hence why we wanted to visit Daunt Books because it seemed fitting to take pictures. And of course, we didn’t just go there to take pictures but also shop for books. As a book lover, I’ve always wanted to visit this specific bookshop because of its aesthetically-pleasing interiors and its rather cosy atmosphere. 

After that, we took the tube to Piccadilly and Her Majesty’s Theatre. We thought it was wise to see Phantom instead of Prince of Egypt since the theatre is farther from where we were parked and where we wanted to eat. Again, we didn’t expect too much. Surely it would be more expensive to buy a ticket from the stall than online, but for some reason, my Dad was convinced that we could secure tickets if we bought at the booth instead. As we waited outside in the cold, I tried my best not to keep my hopes up because it has always been my dream to watch the Phantom as a stage production. I refused to watch the film adaptation as well as to read the book. (Which was so unlike me, I usually read the book first before watching a musical or a movie.)

When my Dad stepped out of the building with a frown on his face, I shrugged it off because there’s always the next time, but as he approached us, on his hand were three rectangle papers that looked similar to a ticket. I started to jump on my feet in excitement. “It starts in thirty minutes,” my Dad had said as he handed us the tickets. My Mum had playfully smacked my Dad’s arm as she exclaimed, “Then why were you frowning!?”  

We stood in the queue and the next thing I knew, we were already inside the theatre and boy, was it gorgeous! It’s not like I’ve never been to a theatre before. I’ve watched the stage production of Aladdin before, but that was a long time ago, and I forgot what it felt like. 

The whole experience was thrilling, it was soulful, and it was memorable. It is one of the most amazing and probably favourite moments of my life! Three hours later, we left the theatre and headed to one of our trusted and rather authentic Italian restaurants in Soho, La Porchetta. 

Sunday 31 October

As they say, “good things come to an end”, and it was this day. 

We had a fantastic breakfast while watching The Operatives, then by eleven o’clock, we got ready, and by one o’clock, we left for Camden… Supposedly… 

We ended up going to Little Venice instead, and it’s literally what the name suggests. It is London’s version of Venice. It’s a calm river with quaint and pretty looking boats, and the colour palette played well with the waters and the orange leaves of autumn. It felt like Halloween. We didn’t stay long and headed to Euston Station and decided to eat there instead. 

Checking the live departure times, I saw a notification about Avanti West Coast Trains and trains heading up north being delayed and a possibility of cancelling. A bubble of panic started at the bottom of my stomach, but my Mum told me to calm down and wait for my time to come. As the time hit four o’clock, my train was on the board, but no platforms were being revealed, and it kept being delayed, then it was just obliterated. Then the announcer says that all trains to Birmingham and other destinations up north were cancelled. The crowd groaned in unison, and some even shed a tear or two. 

I was upset, and we tried to find a way to catch a train that night. The ticket people had told us that my ticket was still valid from the later hours until the next day, so my parents and I tried to find a train for the night. We did find one, but they kept being delayed. Then we knew that I had no hope that night and had to board early the next day instead. 

Monday 1 November

Four o’clock in the morning… 

I had to wake up at four o’clock in the morning since there was less traffic, and it was true, we arrived at the station pretty quickly compared to the day before. I don’t remember too much about it since I was half-awake most of the time. 

My Dad approached the ticket booth to confirm that my ticket was still valid, and they said ‘yes.’ So, I took a quick loo break and headed towards the platform. I said my goodbyes, put on my headphones and tried to sleep. 

I’d probably end this here if my trip went smoothly, but it didn’t. Just before Coventry station, the train stopped completely, and we were told that there were some wiring problems. We waited and waited, only to end up waiting for an hour. Then the train started moving but a little bit slower than its usual pace. 

Nevertheless, the rest of the passengers and I arrived safe and sound in Birmingham!

That’s it for today and I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it! How was your spooky weekend? Let me know in the comments below! 

Anyways, I’ll see you guys next Wednesday and have a wonderful week ahead! 

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