Its time to get out of the festive mood. The new year is here and has brought with itself the calendar dates which are now everyone’s focus. Yes, I’m talking about the deadlines. Until 31st December they seemed to be at some distance, but with the single digital change from 08 to 09, they are imminent.
December has been a season of festivals, celebrations and extreme fun coupled with intense cold and blustering (and unforgiving) winds. First it was Eid-ul-Adha, another novelty for me away from home and then my first ever Christmas which I profoundly enjoyed. The lights, trees, gifts, fairs, chocolates, music, and the go-crazy parties have been a memorable and phenomenal experience while Boxing Day shopping served as a cherry on top. Boxing Day sale stories are quite famous back home so I was curious to find out if indeed the prices drop so low. No wonder people start queuing even before 4 am!!
The new year was also celebrated here in some exceptional style. Unfortunately, I had to skip the display of fireworks, or any other event for that matter, which I saw on television later. I had no choice, it was just too cold for me. It still is. The winds can be unforgiving at times, that too when the temperature is hanging loosely close to 0C, tilting to either side at will. So, here is some lesson for someone coming from a warm country, especially Middle East where temperatures can go as high as 45 or even 50 degrees Celcius - gear yourself for cold, physically and mentally.
Now that we have entered the new year, leaving the festive season behind, looking ahead at deadlines (the word deadline is horrifying!) all focus and concentration needs to be on the courseworks. I have remained in touch with them since the vacations began, trying to do as much as possible so as not to be forced to cram in the end. When the term ended I had only one thought - courseworks. Surprisingly, they have been manageable and gratifying so far. The feeling of doing something myself under such pressure conditions (with December distractions) is just nonpareil. I should not feel overly confident at this point since I haven’t completed any one of the six courseworks that I’m due to submit early next term. I do need some luck, prayers and good wishes to complete all of them. Most of all, I need to work
So, I am concluding this post with a picture of the Christmas tree at my department building, which will always remind me of the great time I’m having here.