So yeah after saying I would write up a journal about my graduation I kinda didn't did I.. oops.
To be fair I still haven't gotten the pictures all sent to me properly yet Ok just looked whilst typing this journal, they where sent half to one email address, the other half to another.... Right, so after 3 years of work that certainly felt like more, I graduated from Royal Holloway University of London with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science. It was a crazy road to get to this point, but that is another story.
To begin with none of us seemed to really be all that bothered about the graduation, I know a few people didn't even bother showing up, but it seems odd to not want to celebrate your own, and your friends and colleagues achievements. It was only really on the way there that it really sunk in that this was the end of my time at university and got me thinking of all the things I had and hadn't done over the last 3 years. Upon arrival I met up with my closest friend from university and we went to collect and get dressed in our graduation robes/gowns or what ever the hell they are called. Afterwards we headed to the Computer Science department where there was a get together before the ceremony with free food and drinks. We of course managed to walk through the entire building to find in what was just outside the reception area. We where also the first two to turn up fully kitted out for the ceremony. Which for the record looked like this:
I love the yellow(That's what it was listed as when ordering but is clearly gold) that BSc graduates get over the, what can only be described as turd brown, BA graduates get! After talking to the staff and some of our fellow graduates for a bit, we helped pack up the tables and chairs(yeah whilst all in robes and on our special day, thanks for that staff! :P) me and my friend went and got some professional photos taken(these ones certainly still haven't be sorted out grrr) and then I went to purchase a graduation ring, you know one of those that has the universities crest on, but then had to dash off to auditorium being used to gather up the graduates for the ceremony. At this point we sorted into alphabetical order and given a speech or two and told how things would go. There was a lot of people there in the end, all the graduates from Computer Science and Physics, both BSc, Masters and PHD students. At one point I was approached by one of the people in charge of the ceremony, at which point I though oh dear what have I done that means I can't graduate, as I can't be getting any special awards, turns out for spacing purposes after the student procession, the line of student was cut at me and I would have to lead the entire rest of the line around again. I was told I had to look out for a certain person at a certain point to make the cut, or otherwise it could get a bit screwed up, so I informed the person who would be behind me as to how screwed we where then got to it. The procession was cool, walking through staff and family who weren't in the chapel to see the main event, then in to the large Victorian `Founders' building, round to the old grandly decorated "Victorian corridor"(never heard it be named that before, but oh well) then to some fanfair being played but honest to God beefeater's that most of come over from Windsor(We always have them there due the Royal title I believe, the Queen was at one of the graduations last year) we started walk down a red carpet that ran through the picture gallery with a few overflow guests in and through the main entrance way and through the beautifully decorated chapel where all the main guests where, and the back and through the less glamorous health centre where I luckily did spot the person and the line was cut correctly, partially thanks to me calling out to someone on my course that nearly walked the rest of the line off in the wrong direction. The next bit was kinda interesting, at this point it wasn't in public so much but was nice to be at the front for that little while as we re-walked the circuit, but walked out before the gallery.(To explain the gallery, the Founders building was built back in Victorian times as a girls college, and once it became a larger university the original owner/founder and his wife's' art collections where kept on display in the building, they have been on tour around america at one point and supposedly well know, but it's just old art to me. The chapel is from back then too, really overly decorated and stunning to be inside.)
We went one by one to collect the little piece of paper to pretend it is a degree(The real certificate is done in November) and my head of department, as I predicted, pronounced my name wrong, got my paper and headed back down the red carpet, and out to meet my friend who had already been, we then just chilled until the main ceremony was other and we moved to another area for drinks and the big class photos. That was basically the end of the day, I went and purchased the class photos, handed back the robes, bought a shirt then headed to see my friends new house and get something to eat to celebrate. Ended up being at his for a while and when heading to the station to get picked up a storm rolled in. although we got soaked it was very refreshing, and the thunder and lightning was great. Just as the moment seemed it couldn't get any cooler, (and some here may now a am a bit of train fanatic) I hear an odd noise from the level crossing and turn to look through the closed station building to see a beautiful steam locomotive slowly puffing through the station! I rushed to the platform to get a good view, got that lovely smell of the locomotive that went great with the freshness the storm was bringing, it also seemed to be working harder in the rain so you could hear it chugging along for a fair ways. Was a great end to a great day!