Natural Selection

Going back to university after a 4 month long summer holiday is like leaving the bathroom after a super hot shower or walking out of an air-conditioned building on an Indian summers day or like getting out of bed on a winters morning. Your entire body feels like it has received a shock. There is a brief moment of absolute desperation as your insides plead. You shiver and sweat as you adjust to this strange new environment. Before you know it, and although this may seem impossible to you, you don’t even notice the change.

Acclimatisation is one of the best things about natures instinct on survival. Even in the toughest of environments species develop to their habitats. Species have evolved through the process of natural selection. This is the idea that those best suited to their habitats are most likely to stick around for a little longer.

Much of natural selection exists at university, metaphorically. Those that acclimatised survived, those that couldn’t didn’t. It was a simple selection. The difference between Darwin’s species and us is that we have a choice to change our survival rate. Part of our survival is genetic and the other, more significant, part is environmental. We have to race. We have to work hard. I felt genuine sadness for our 18 colleagues that had failed today. I could have been in that position. In fact, I had been convinced I would be have been in that position.

Starting university feels like a mission now, just like a bear out of hibernation. There is no going back to the comfort of the warm bed, there is no chance of staying in the shower a little longer and you most definitely have no opportunity to slow down the pace.

That said, there was comfort in seeing the familiar faces of my friends. These are the people that spend hours with me on coursework deadlines and phone calls. The friends that appreciate and understand you and are in just as much shit as you are. It was nice to be back. Despite everything that was coming ahead, the summer had been long and boring. I was ready for the challenge, you know? I know it was going to be hectic but somehow I know that that’s my most comfortable environment. And so what if this was statistically going to be the hardest year of my course? Let the games begin.


PS: Unfortunately, this is going to be my last post on this blog for a little while. Last year I felt that during term times my posts were a little more irregular than I would have liked and making posts regularly tended to require more inspiration than I had time for. I might be making on-off updates so if you are a regular reader, I am really sorry about the randomness ^^

Hope to be blogging soon! :D

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Posted by on October 5, 2015 in Life


Back in time with my punk-rock heels

I was offered an opportunity to see Tom Russell live at the 100 Club on Oxford Street. I’ll be honest with you, until yesterday, I had never listened to the music neither did I know of the artist, despite being told about this gig a good month in advance. So, on the one hand, I didn’t really know what I was getting into. On the other, that was sort of exiting.

The 100 Club’s location can be easily missed and I have a feeling that it is only really found by those looking for it. It has a small, rusted sign that leads to an underground basement. I had a strange feeling that I had entered a cult gathering ground and the dim red lighting was not helping. As well as that, I was one of the youngest three people in the audience. Every other person was either married, divorced or over the age of 30, at least. I felt a little out of place, so naturally, I started talking to everyone about everything and anything just to feel a little less uncomfortable.

That said, I overcame the awkwardness very easily. It was amusing to see such a huge elderly crowd in a punk and grunge basement. It seemed like a cool place to be. There was history in this building. A history which the younger people of this generation could appreciate but not really participate with. A large majority of us, without being too stereotypical, hang out at night clubs and pubs, listen to RnB and pop at house parties, download as much music as we like on our Ipods and get plastered at any opportunity. Gigs? Yes, I really want to go to Glastonbury or Reading some day too but I hardly ever think of going to small, underground basements to listen to live up-and-coming bands. Perhaps, I just don’t have the right company for it.

So, as you can imagine, I felt like I was in one of the coolest locations of the 80’s listening to an unknown artist like a modern day hipster. That was, in itself, rather awesome. A while ago, I went to the Citadel festival in London to listen to Ben Howard, an indie-folk genius. I expected today’s gig to be similar – slow but riveting. And it was. It was spectacular. The music filled the room faster than pressurised air and bounced off the walls with electric vibrancy. I could feel Tom Russell’s wise, country voice at the back of my neck and it was absolutely the most sexiest voice I’ve heard in a good while.

The difference was the crowd. I would look around the room to find every single eye listening patiently to the man’s voice. There was a drink in one hand but there was no phone in the other. Not one person had the urge to record the memory on an electric device (except perhaps the tour manager). With them, I put my phone away and simply listened to the music.

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Posted by on October 2, 2015 in Life


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The hardest decisions…

At times, I feel as if the hardest challenges for me are those where I have to accept a person’s personality and decisions for what they are. I’m not the quietest of girls. in fact, I would define myself as a naive, somewhat simple, and logical person with a straightforward attitude. I like to say things that are on my mind for what they are. Sure, it isn’t sugar-coated. Sure, it isn’t the most comforting. However, when I evaluate someone’s problems, may it be a friend or a family member, I will always try to be as forward-coming as possible. Perhaps it is my engineering intuition to seek solutions or it is a natural urge to help someone. Whatever it is, I know I do it.

I have accepted myself for who I am. There were times where I would have thought it wrong to be so crude and quick tongued. I thought it was unkind to be diplomatic rather than sympathetic. Was I really going to debate the positives of self-improvement instead of offering a cup of tea? Was advice and guidance really the best response to a broken heart? These actions were soon justified and form the basis of my personality. I was being cruel to be kind. Yes, comfort is necessary but so is a solution. I soon found that I had synced the two responses together in harmony. Just like sweet and sour tickles my taste buds, solutions and comfort could go hand in hand.

This balance can get lost with certain situations and people. ( Expected.) And sometimes, I have to accept that the situation is out of my hands. A control seeking lunatic I may be, I, too, am a mere mortal in this world. To me, accepting a person’s choices, when I know there are better ones, is one of the hardest challenges. As much as I have exhausted myself providing aid only to have had the response of a brick wall, it is very difficult for me to stop trying. It is even more difficult for me to give up on those I care about.

It is almost an obsessive-compulsive trait. I know I am not going anywhere but I almost feel a sense of incompleteness, similar to when I pick up an algebraic equation and only be able to solve half of it every time.

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Posted by on September 21, 2015 in Life


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We need to change the catering industry.

I’m a part-time events waitress and I thoroughly enjoy my job. As a people person, when this job was first advertised, I knew that it was completely up my street. However, although the front-of-house catering was an exciting challenge, back-of-house clearing was an entirely different scene.

And until this job, I had absolutely no idea how much food we throw away. Generally, the customers are not the problem. Being in a first world country, plenty of TV charity adverts have, and quite rightly, guilt tripped us into finishing our meals because there are people in this world that can’t. My family insisted that I shouldn’t waste food and appreciate everything given to me. However you do get the odd customer that plates up his/her buffet meal and then decides he/she doesn’t want to eat it. Well, why go for thirds then?

As well as that, majority of the time, on an account bar, you will be shocked of just how much alcohol is poured down the sink. Anything open but not consumed has to go…even if I want to take home that expensive bottle of 3/4 rosé, I have to miserably give it away to sewage fish. Some people also tend to abuse the “free” bar system. Yes, it’s free but that doesn’t mean you should buy a pint of beer 5 minutes before closing, have 1 gulp and then leave. What do you think is going to happen to it?

We live in a consumerist society. Consumerism due to mass market production ensures that people forget the value of resources. It’s okay because I can always buy more, right?

Customers can be wasteful but any consumer can appreciate just how wrong it is. It’s a complete drain on resources. Think, this drink has been manufactured by consuming a lot of energy, been fermented/brewed/chemically synthesised consuming lots more energy, been transported and arrived at your fridge only to then get chucked away. That is the definition of stupidity.

Back to the dinner event you went to, think of all the food that hasn’t been plated but has been left out? The food that is cling filmed and in the kitchen ready to go? Because you always make extra. Always. What about all of the food made today that wasn’t eaten by customers or staff, where does that go? Yep. You guessed it, sister.

We throw bags and bags of food. And get this, it goes straight to the dump. Along with the cardboards and the plastics. I don’t know if anything is recycled but something tells me it’s not.

The reason I’m writing this blog is because I hope that we can spread the word here. The bosses up there need to know that we are not happy with health and safety rules. The food can go to the homeless if we do a good job of protecting it. We are in the 21st century and have fridges and freezers. Sure, it requires energy but if you evaluate your product life cycles, even companies will appreciate the use of resources.
It bothers me that companies have these laws because they don’t want to be sued. That’s not right. Its almost as if people don’t matter any more.

We need to change this.

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Posted by on September 19, 2015 in Life


Me, a fashionista? Probably not.

I picked up the ‘Stylist’ magazine out of the hands of a Waterloo paper girl this morning. Usually, I make do with the metro. It’s quick, it’s saucy, and it has an adorable section on crushes. However, I was having a rather unusual day. I had woken up before the alarm, left the house without a shower and chose the ‘cheese twist’ instead of the croissant at the local Sainsbury’s. If today was like any other day, I would have rushed past the paper-girl.

I slouched down on the train by the window seats, rested my feet against the opposite chair and read through a couple of articles in the metro. There were usual updates about the weather, featured films, migrants, paedophiles, CSI worthy murders (someone had tried to dispose a body in an acid bath, I mean, come-on?!), more migrants and more paedophiles. And as always, I put the paper away feeling disgruntled at the state of the world.

Fashion is for girls and boys with nothing better to do with their time, I thought, but let’s read through this magazine anyway. If anything, I was curious. I’ve never been the fashionable one. My wardrobe is boring, ambition-less and mundane. Majority of the colours are tasteless but I do own some rather sexy artefacts, in my humble opinion. In contrast, my sister could start her own Etsy collection of vintage, classy and unique fashion. Walking down the streets with her is embarrassing. She dresses in boots, rugged shorts, crop top, excessive overcoat and accessories. I’m trailing behind in trainers, over-sized jeans, a plain t-shirt and hoodie.

Some people just have an eye for looks and presentation. Other’s simply don’t care. Falling in the latter category, I’m thankful I didn’t follow through on the fashion designer fantasy. Looking through the countless articles on make-up and reviews on several high-street brands, I spent half the time judging the questionable choices designers had made in their £1500 dresses and £700 shoes.

As the train approached my station, I placed the magazine down on the seats and walked out of the train with a new perspective. Whilst celebrity fashion investments could be classified as ‘just for show’, fashionable people in general were not fake but simply tasteful. Fashion was an art form of one’s own presentation. Some people insist on ‘looking and feeling good’ and others, like me, preferred function to style. Most importantly, it didn’t matter if you were in the former or latter category but that you felt comfortable in being who you were.

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Posted by on September 9, 2015 in Life


I’m ranting about growing up again.

I will be turning twenty in less than six months. A prospect that doesn’t just daunt me, it petrifies me. It is going to be a completely new decade and I’m not sure I’m comfortable with that. People expect you to have your life together, a goal perhaps? Nineteen gives you the freedom to make mistakes, repeatedly even. Teenagers are “developing” after all. They need guidance, support and constant assurance that the big bad world isn’t so bad after all. Off course, once you reach twenty all your nightmares are real. For one thing is sure… there is no going back.

I make growing up sound morbid. It’s inevitable I suppose. Last night, I almost hoped burying myself inside my blanketed cave would make all the responsibilities go away. I expected to cocoon myself for hours on end. I didn’t. I sighed at my misery, got up, and got on with it. That’s what adulthood was, right?

It isn’t “growing up” that’s bothering me.

I am grown up.

I have to be.

We all do.


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Posted by on September 4, 2015 in Life



As I sit here in perfect harmony with my surroundings, my mind is replaying moments from this bank holiday weekend in a desperate attempt to hold onto them permanently. On Friday night, I was carelessly moving to the beats at a Camden night club. I didn’t get to bed till 4 in the morning and by the time I fell asleep, it was already daylight. Because of that, the next day my friend and I became museum exhibits ourselves as we sat around lazily at the V&A and admired the Minotaur sculpture. Besides, how else would we have noticed the colour coordinated pink and purple elderly couple? We had pizza and played beer pong, sung karaoke and paraded through the streets at the Notting Hill carnival.

Although I spent majority of my time recovering from a hangover at the V&A I noticed there was a new exhibition on luxury. Inside it, different artefacts and designs reflected their own ideas, or in other words, they expressed what luxurious felt like to them. Some thought luxury was combining nature with technology, others insisted it was possessing hand-crafted goods that were too exquisite for mass production and a small percentage believed it was the ability to be alone and truly lost.

I reflected on my own definition of luxury. Something about sharing wine from the bottle on the side curb was luxurious. Something about take away pizza was exquisite. For me, after spending months as a library recluse, time with friends and family has been a generous present. I sleep and wake-up at ungodly hours. I spend majority of the day being myself. I drink, I travel, I party. My life is one adventure after another. In fact, on some days, I do nothing. Simply nothing. That, in itself, is a luxury by many people’s standards. For instance, right now, I’m slouching on an excessive arrangement of pillows with tea in my hands and listening to the sounds of the rain outside. I’m too comfortable to even move.

However, luxury, in all definitions, was time-bound. It’s existence only appreciated if it arrived in short bursts… Having realised this, I know now that my time as a carefree student was soon coming to an end. In less than a month, I will have moved into my new flat and I would be ready to start the next year. My time tied around my ankles with weights. The prospect of the commencing second year used to leave me quite unsettled. I don’t want to return to a life of miserable lab-reports and insane workload. Yet, something about this summer is edging me on. Just like too much of double-chocolate ice cream could make me sick, luxury could get overwhelming. I would miss being free but at the same time I am holding on to the memories I have had this summer. Short though it was, I enjoyed every moment of it. I may not be ready to start adulthood in any way but I know that I live for little moments like these from time to time.


Posted by on August 31, 2015 in Life


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