I have arrived in Sheffield

I have arrived!! In Sheffield that is.

I left mom and dad’s place shortly after noon on Tuesday. Mom insisted that we stop at Spöngin (shopping centre) where she bought me two pairs of fancy earrings. One pair is my birthday present and the other one is my graduation present. It was super sweet. :) After that we picked up Teddi and Katla (my nephew and niece) and brought them with us to the airport.

Luckily I wasn’t charged for my very heavy luggage. I mentioned that I was moving to England and apparently that was enough. I hugged mom, dad and the kids half to death before I left, even dad shed a few tears for me. Aww, now I’m all teary eyed. It’s strange to think I won’t see them again for months.

The flight was uneventful as usual. I played some Sudoku, listened to music and read. The seat next to me was empty, which was very nice.

I landed in London at 8pm and got my luggage right away. I then spent 2 hours or so at a Costa café since my bus didn’t leave until 11.30pm.

My bus driver was an ass. No really. I brought my luggage to him and warned him that it was heavy. He charged me £10, which was fine. I turned away and then heard him grunt so I turned back to him with a smile. I meant to offer to help him with it but obviously he is very busy being all strong and macho so he decided I was laughing at him. He freaked out and threatened to leave my luggage behind. I told him I hadn’t been laughing at him and eventually he put my luggage on the bus and I went and picked a seat. Like I said: an ass!

The bus ride was boring. I couldn’t fall asleep and since it was dark there wasn’t much to see. I was able to sort of semi-doze most of the way so it wasn’t too bad. When I got to Sheffield everything was closed, understandably, it was 3.45am. I walked to the train station and was lucky enough to run into a woman there who found me a taxi. This driver was nice and chatty and we found Endcliffe Village (student housing area) before long. The reception there is open 24/7 and is called The Edge. For some reason the man in the reception was unable to find the key to my room and had to call someone else in and it took a while.

I asked to go to the bathroom but for some reason the only toilets that weren’t locked were quite a walk away. Unfortunately for me I have a minor bladder infection going on and after running through the halls like a moron with my legs half crossed I ended up peeing my pants. Yes, it was very embarrassing. I was prepared to go back to the reception and blush to death but when I got there the guy was in the back somewhere and I managed to open my luggage, pull out another pair of pants and change before he got back! SCORE! Just that makes this whole story only about 1/10 as embarrassing as it could have been.

Eventually a key was found and a young guy came by with a car to drive me to my room. He was very funny and we joked around the whole way. Once he started struggling with my luggage we agreed that if he got a hernia it would be my fault. He also told me that I was welcome to come to The Edge if I needed anything, unless it was to ask him to carry that bag again…in that case I would be shit out of luck. :P

They gave me a bedding pack which was nice, except that the sheet doesn’t fit on the bed. It’s ok though. It means I don’t have to buy a duvet, just sheets and a better pillow. I slept the whole night through…well, what was left of it.

Yesterday morning I went out and found a supermarket where I bought some essentials (such as shampoo) and then went back for a shower. I then went to The Edge and told them the drain in my bathroom doesn’t drain. The bathroom was like a big lake for a few hours. Then I went and bought some more stuff (drying rack, laundry basket, stuff like that).

At 5pm I had a job interview. I met two guys at The Interval and we talked. It was fun, they were nice and funny and we got along really well. The job is at Coffee Revolution, a cafe in the Students’ Union building which is being renovated at the moment. I think they liked me, but they did warn me that they had a big number of really good applicants so I’m staying hopeful, but not too hopeful.

The evening was spent reading and then falling asleep early. :P I woke up again at midnight and didn’t fall asleep for 4 hours or so. My sleeping cycle is way off.

I woke up at 9.30am when a guy came over to fix the drain. Good service! I decided not to sleep any more and instead found my way to the city centre and got myself a phone number. I am now sitting at Starbucks. Later I’m going to Meadowhall (a mall) to buy even more stuff! I’m thinking I’ll just call a taxi to drive me home from there so I won’t have to kill myself trying to carry it all home by myself.

So that’s that. Day number 2 in Sheffield! I still have all sorts of things to do so I’m not too bored. I’m not looking forward to being all settled though since that’s when I’ll start getting bored, lonely and homesick. Eeeep.

12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ásta Theódórsdóttir
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 10:58:25

    Skemmtilegur lestur! Nauðsynlegt að hafa upplifað svona ferðir sem hægt er að hlæja að seinna ;)
    Gangi þér ofsalega vel að kynnast staðnum og vonandi einhverju fólki svo þér leiðist ekki of mikið! Ég krossa allar fingur og tær fyrir því að þú fáir vinnuna :) Þetta er spennandi! Hlakka til að fylgjast áfram með.

    Reply

  2. kalldoro
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 11:02:23

    Takk takk systa! :D Ég skal reyna að skrifa eitthvað hérna sem oftast, ég verð samt ekki með internet heima hjá mér fyrr en í September. En það er bara ágætis afsökun til að fara út á hverjum degi.

    Ok, omg. Það er stelpa hérna inni á Starbuckst í PELS! Það er örugglega 20°C! Mig ekki skilja!

    Reply

  3. Kristinn
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 12:05:52

    Snilld að lesa þetta.

    Fylgist með, knús.

    Reply

  4. mtranc3
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 12:40:47

    Nah, I don’t think you’ll have time to be bored and homesick once classes start, and I don’t say that because of the studying, oh no :D, but because you’ll meet people and start hanging out with them :D

    I think most launderettes in campuses have tumble dryers, so a rack will probably not be necessary. Not to mention it will make your room really humid if you’re drying clothes inside.

    You were so lucky to have a 24/7 reception. I think that’s because Sheffield has an actual campus, unlike London unis where you’d have to lodge in a hotel and go there the next morning (I would know, I’ve been there unfortunately… >.<).

    Some knowledge that I can impart with you from experience:

    1) Don't buy kitchenware or room essentials (mats, lamps, pillows etc) from the supermarkets or department stores like Debbenham's etc – they tend to be very expensive. Instead, get them from these kind of shops that exist all over England, they seem run down, but they have everything you need for the house, in much cheaper prices. You can usually spot them because the have brooms and buckets and other stuff on display out in the pavement. Sometimes they can even have stuff for just 1 pound (these are usually called 'Poundland').

    2) Order of super expensive to cheap supermarkets:

    Marks & Spencer (Their food section is v.v. expensive).
    Waitrose (v. expensive but their own brand is high quality)
    Sainsbury's
    Morrison's
    Tesco's (they have good deals on DVDs!)
    Asda
    Lidl

    Tesco's is the best IMO for a student to shop, as they have their own brand ('Tesco') for cheaper alternatives to most products, but their even cheaper line ('Tesco value') is dirt cheap, although i don't know about the quality…

    3) PC World is a good store for technology, and if there isn't one in town, which I doubt, they deliver free around the UK, I think.

    4) HMV is for great DVD deals and cds (and pop books, and posters, and merchandize, etc).

    5) Talking about posters, during freshers week they always have a poster sale, with better prices than in stores.

    6) New Look is great for pretty clothes in good prices.

    7) This might sound disheartening, but I wish someone had told me before too: good food (vegetables, fruits, real fruit juices, legumes, nuts, seeds, olive oil, fish) is expensive in England. People don't usually cook there, they mostly have ready meals or pre-cooked meals that don't require much preparation. You'll see when you go to a supermarket. So for someone who wants to make a nutritious diet and likes to cook, it might come expensive and one might resort to the easier and cheaper solutions. There is a phenomenon that's called 'freshman's 10', which means freshmen might gain 10 kilos in their first year. I'll tell you this: my friend gained 20 kilos in her first year. And my other friend around 10 in her 4 years. I went to England 54 kilos and left 64. And when I went back I was 63 and left 85. :( But I don't want to scare you, it doesn't happen to everybody, but it DOES happen. My Chinese friend who was a doctor and a healthy lifestyle freak, started drinking Coke everyday and consume great amounts of Skitter's :D I'm sure she's glad to be back to Taiwan food-wise.

    8) As a student you are entitled to many discounts, for transport, for shops, for theatres and cinemas. But you must have proof (usually your student card).

    9) If you are interested in a hobby, most unis have societies (even for countries!). They require a small fee, but they are lots of fun. I was in the anime soc of my uni and we had screenings 3 times a week. And ALWAYS look at the notice boeards on campus: they might have advertisements for plays, for free cinema screenings, for parties, for all sorts of fun stuff.

    Phew… i can't think of anything else right now, but if I do I'll let you know. Most importantly I hope you will have a good time and a great experience! ^-^v

    PS What was the bus compaby you travelled with? Was it National Express? Because I've never heard of extra fee for heavy luggage and I think it might not have been legal on the driver's part. Did you pay for your ticket on a kiosk before you borded, or on board? Hm… it's strange…

    -Mtranc3

    Reply

    • kalldoro
      Aug 20, 2010 @ 11:19:21

      Thank you for this long useful comment! I really appreciate it! :D I have to admit though, I did buy bedding and towels at Debenhams, but that’s because I’m a snob when it comes to my bed and towels. I’m willing to pay more for stuff I know will last longer…and is softer against my skin. :P

      Everything else is super useful, especially the list of stores and which ones are cheapest.

      As for the food…omg yes! I noticed when I was in Brighton last summer that the stores were full of precooked prepackaged foods and most of it really unhealthy shit. It’s amazing. I still think the food here is going to be cheap for me, food in Iceland (like Helga said) is super expensive…especially after the financial crisis. I think food prices rose about 60%. So yeah, I’m going to be careful. Even though it’s more expensive I’m still going to try to stick to fresher foods.

      Also, I bought the drying rack because I don’t tumble dry all of my clothes. I have dresses/jeans/trousers that I never tumble dry.

      And yes it was National Express. I didn’t say anything about it because he gave me a receipt for it and all. He said it was 10 pounds if the weight was more than 20kg…which it totally was. I think my bag was 35kg. :P

      Reply

      • mtranc3
        Aug 20, 2010 @ 16:13:00

        No problem, I hope some of it will be useful! \o/

        Haha, last year when I was in Surrey, I bought my pillow from Debenhams too :p But only because there weren’t any other relevant shops in sight!

        About the bus driver, since he gave you a receipt, I suppose it’s okay. It was just the first time I’ve ever heard of something like this.

        Also: for fresh (and usually better quality than those in super-markets) foods try to look for grocery shops that are most always owned by foreign (non-english) people. They tend to import the best vegetables. For example, I’m used to big sized tomatoes here in Greece, but in the UK, tomatoes in super markets are like… appricots, size-wise. But in both areas of London and Surrey that I have stayed, I was lucky to find small, family-owned grocery stores (Turkish/Chinese) that had ‘real’ tomatoes and other yummy and fresh foods ^^

        Reply

  5. Ragna Björk
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 13:22:10

    Vá hvað ég hló þegar þú pissaðir í þig!! Mega vandræðanlegt fyrir þig en svo fyndið fyrir mig. Ég pissaði einu sinni pínu í mig þegar ég var að hlaupa yfir Hverfisgötuna, alveg í spreng að flýta mér í vinnuna og þá hnerraði ég allt í einu. Ekki sjéns að ég gat haldið í mér í svona kröftugum skyndilegum hnerra ;-)

    En ég mun koma til með að passa mig að brosa ekki til rútubílstjóra í Englandi eftir lesturinn því það er greinilega hægt að mistúlka það á fleiri hátt en “come-on”. Ömulegt að hann var svona dónalegur við þig.

    Reply

    • kalldoro
      Aug 20, 2010 @ 11:20:25

      Haha, já þetta var þokkalega vandræðalegt. Ég var svo ógeðslega fegin að mér tókst að skipta um buxur án þess að gaurinn tæki eftir því…annars hefði þetta verið svooooooo mikið verra. :P

      Ég var þokkalega pirruð út í þennan helvítis bílstjóra. Sem betur fer þurfti ég ekkert meira að tala við hann. Þvílíkir karlmennskustælar.

      Reply

  6. Helga Dís
    Aug 19, 2010 @ 19:00:47

    Ragna: Ég hló meira að þinni sögu! HAHHAA

    mtranc3: I doubt fresh food is as expensive as here in Iceland. The food here is INSANELY expensive!

    En YAY! Komin! Ég er að deyja úr stressspenningi :P

    Reply

  7. Halla
    Aug 22, 2010 @ 21:32:39

    Okay, so the trip went okay. Not perfect, with the ass bus driver and the lack of bathrooms… but it could have been worse.

    Glad you’re all in one piece. :)

    *hug*

    Reply

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