The Joys of Winter
Happy Holidays everyone!
It is yet another cold winter here in UK and that time of year that many students dread and rightly so because as we get deeper into the chilly season nearly each day seems to get more and more gloomy and this can have a negative effect on our every day activities. Most international students have left for their respective homes for the holidays, however this year I am in Manchester for the holidays. Contrary to what you may have heard, there are little moments during winter that can get you cheered up even on the coldest day. Here are a few of them.
Guy Fawkes Bonfire Night
During this time of year there are numerous fireworks displays that can take your breath away. One such occasion is during Guy Fawkes/Bonfire night when everyone gathers in Platt fields Park here in Manchester or other parks around the UK and light a large fire on the 5th of November, usually followed by a wonderful fireworks display. It is a nice time to come together with friends and enjoy the moment before the end of the semester.
Christmas is my favourite time of year and like every other year, there is a grand Christmas Lights Turn on ceremony in the center of the city followed by the Christmas markets that last through the holidays. The ceremony is marked with live music and entertainment, and people flock to the Town Hall to witness arguably the best fireworks display this side of the country! The markets are as wonderful as always and I am always stepping out to grab some hot chocolate or snacks with some friends accompanied by nice stories and laughter. The markets are always a good time even in the cold of winter.
Christmas Carols Services
I enjoy singing and the best church services of the year personally are the candlelight carols services closer to Christmas Day itself. On this day everyone comes together to sing their favorite Christmas songs and it makes this time of year feel more about community and coming together even when I am away from my family.
Each year there are several amazing concerts in different parts of the city and I have had the privilege of singing at one such concert and attending another here in the University.
This time of year can be lonely, however I have come to realize that if you surround yourself with your friends and constantly attend the wonderful events available, it could feel like a second home.
Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year 2017!
Josemaria is currently studying Law LLB (Hons) at the University of Manchester. He took the NCUK IFY at Brookhouse School in Nairobi, Kenya.