Hi! I wrote for the Inside Word last year and my goodness, it’s great to be back!

I am going into my second year here at UoA and initially, I had some mixed feelings about being back; a few of my closest friends either transferred elsewhere or left uni completely, which was sad, but I quickly realised since being back that there are just so many enthusiastic and lovely people around. This year I am living in Carlaw Park Student Village. It’s a self-catered set of uni flats, close to campus. It immediately gave off an aura of calm and quietness. Carlaw is so different from my first-year hall, O’Rorke, in that there is such a wide variety of students living here from second year onwards. There is far less ‘party spirit’ around possibly because everyone has settled down, but it is still social, O-Week events like barbecues and beach visits were arranged for us too. I really like the way that UoA sets us up steadily towards independence; from the fully catered first-year halls that are literally on campus with people all around you all the time to the more independent second-year halls, self-catered, quieter and slightly further away.

I am in a 3-person flat and am so far loving it. I’ll be honest, living in O’Rorke last year I didn’t really explore too far away from the CBD as everything I thought I needed was just right ‘there.’ This year I have been out and about already further outside of the city’s centre than I went the whole of last year. This may be because Carlaw is less than 500m from the train station, making wider Auckland much more accessible.

Carlaw is in the Parnell area and rather embarrassingly, even though it is about a 20-minute walk from O’Rorke, I had never explored the area so in the first few days of being back in Auckland I had a wander around the main area of Parnell. Weirdly enough, I found it to be comforting as it looks quite English, with beautiful cobblestone side roads, fairy lights and flowers everywhere.

 

Living close to the train station really has been a blessing when it comes to getting places. I got a job working at a coffee shop in Newmarket which is one station away from Parnell, making getting to work for 7.30 extremely easy. The above photos are from when a friend and I took a train to Sylvia Park, I was amazed by the huge number of “Ramune” Japanese drinks, there were flavours I had never thought existed before!

A good friend of mine that I met at uni last year recently got a dog, Charlie, and I was extremely excited to meet him last week. We went for a long walk around Monte Cecilia which is a beautiful dog park near Mount Roskill. It’s safe to say that Charlie wasn’t the only one to get a work out that day!

It’s been an amazing experience flatting so far, I knew one of my flatmates beforehand, and we got very lucky with our third flattee. Despite the fact that all three of us are different, we get along very well and have enjoyed getting to know each other as a group. Games of Uno and leisuring whilst watching Netflix has been great. I’ve really enjoyed the extra independence that Carlaw gives; the bubbliness of the people around me, but also the calmness of the courtyard at night with the trees lit up by street lights.

I’m really excited to be blogging for the Inside Word again this year and I’m looking forward keeping you up to date with my escapades!

 

Sophie

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Sophie Burns

Just a student from England who loves dogs, stationery and herbal teas!

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