Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Project due in 20 days... Äh, ryck upp dig!

"Le riktigt stort. Som om du var jätteglad.

Fortsätt le ett tag innan du läser vidare...sådärja, nu kan du slappna av. 

Le sådär stort igen. Och håll kvar leendet, precis som du gjorde nyss...och slappna av. 

Le igen och håll kvar leendet en liten stund...sådär, slappna av. 

Enligt forskarna har dina just utförda "smilövningar" startat en kemisk process i din kropp! Din påhittade glädje har gjort att det just nu utsöndras alldeles äkta lyckoimpulser i dig...

Snart kommer du känna dig glad på riktigt!"

You are wondering, why is this post in Swedish?

Well, possibly my roommates from Ostkupan will remember. There was a strange, yellow postcard on the back of our door when we entered our corridor. My room was in front of this and so I would see it every time I left my room to go anywhere. However, my Swedish was not up to scratch yet I was interested in what was written, so I typed it all up and saved it somewhere, and I just happen to come across it.

Unfortunately, my Swedish is still not good enough to translate it myself yet, so if you are interested, check it out in your favourite translator. (Maybe a Swedish speaker will translate it for me into English so I can put it up?)


Saturday, April 06, 2013

Project due in 30 days, graduation in 100 days!

Life throws all sorts of challenges at you when you least expect it. What do you do? Crash and burn or succeed and prosper? Possibly its a combination of the two?

After doing an internship for a year between June 2010 - July 2011, returning to education in another country where I've never been before (Sweden) between August 2011 - June 2012 was a challenge. Lots of educational content to remember from the first two years of my degree plus studying masters modules during the third year of my bachelor was some mission, but I pulled through with support from my new friends abroad - thank you everyone! However, it was not easy doing two modules within 7 weeks and then exams the week after, getting engaged in another culture and dare I say it, falling in love and eventually being heartbroken (possibly rejected is the right word here - we were not meant to be) I can say for sure that I gained a lot of experiences and had the time of my life out there. I cannot remember university ever being this fun!

The international journey did not end yet as I had to move to Germany for a three month internship between July 2012 - October 2012. Working in electronics and doing something hands on was completely different from the type of work I had done before in my previous internship. This really demanded a lot of brain power, and in my opinion was hardcore R&D work, but really worthwhile. I also enjoyed watching a German Bundesliga football match with BVB vs. Bayer Leverkusen with my friend Sven, who I met in Sweden during my first semester there. There are so many things I did outside Germany whilst being based there, for example interrailing to Paris via Netherlands and Belgium, and carpooling across Germany to Poland to meet up with Piotr and Shicong to travel around the southern half of Poland, crossing into Slovakia for a couple of hours as well. 

When it was time to return to the UK, I think I needed a break rather than going back into studies straight away. However, the only break I had was coming home to my new house that my parents moved to whilst I was abroad, and sleeping there, before I had to start packing again to move up to Loughborough. I think I was burned out by this time and did not realise it. This eventually started to show, as I lost motivation for studying and was ready to pack it all in, however did not fully realise that this could be the problem. The only thing that kept me there I think was studying French as part of my degree and the desire to achieve first class in the back of my head. Nevertheless, this barely pulled me through the first semester with the environment in the house I was sharing not conducive for high levels of productivity. Therefore, I moved house at the end of the semester.

Things slowly started to get better here as I could get some decent amount of sleep and do some work. This did not last long though, as a week before end of term, my one time experience was not enough thus falling in love again, but made the wrong move and screwed up. 'Education through extracurricular activities' takes up a lot of your time without you realising it. As a result, I'm sorry for all the times I've screwed up and hurt anyone in my life, yet pleased for those people who told me the error of my ways and thankful for the support and ideas I got on how I can go about trying to become a better person.

Now, I'm sorry for not living up to my expectations, but thank you to all my friends for being part of my life and crafting me into the person I am with the various experiences that we gained together. To end this blog entry and possible last post before exams, I have one request. I'll be pleased to see your messages/posts of encouragement to do what I can to complete my degree, but hopefully my synapses will have kicked into place when I wake up tomorrow morning. Ready to tackle what's left of this degree and give electronic and electrical engineers the justice they deserve so I can continue on fighting injustice around the world.

Since my blog posts relate to some experience I've gained with others, I will try and connect it with them. Therefore, I'm dedicating this post to Orla O'Brien, who reminded me of these three key phrases whilst I was abroad in Sweden that will help in many situations: sorry, please, thank you.