Birmingham: Back to Life, Back to Reality!

I'm back at UCB and I'm also back living in Birmingham for the new semester. There's been no jumping on the PATH train to New York City these days, what's my life been reduced to?! Well, I have found my change of location and working quite a struggle, something of a culture shock! It's time get to Birmingham life and back to my student reality! I'm ready for this re-education! 

I won't lie the first few weeks after I got back to England were quite challenging, I was so excited to come back from America that I forgot how I would eventually grow to miss my Lafayette Street life within the Ironbound District. My university belongings were gathering dust, quite literally for they had been sitting in box from when I moved out of Holder House in January 2012. Being back with my family has been precious, even now in February I look forward to the Christmas period due to being in Newark, New Jersey the previous year! I don't have to walk to Newark Penn Station during the early hours of the morning anymore to catch my airport bus but deep down I actually miss it. Birmingham is doing a sterling job of distracting me during this crazy time of transition, moving away to somewhere across the Atlantic Ocean is madness! EWR was yesterday, it was an amazing year! I'm ready to restart my studies! I'm almost there!  

I was rather lazy in Birmingham before I jetted off to Newark, USA for my Industrial Placement at Newark Liberty International Airport. Fresh from a year full of excitement and exploration I'm now on a hunt to get the best and even more from my student city and from hometown as well, I plan to make the make the best of my student loan to help me achieve that. New York City used to be my playground but I never really went out to nightclubs, looking back on that faux pas from my U.S life that I never went out all that when I was in Birmingham before placement. That was yesterday, so I'm now pledging to get back out there on the Gay scene in Birmingham and just enjoy myself at the weekends because I'm tiring of the Freshers scene If I'm honest. I know for a fact that Birmingham student life this time around will be different and even more enriching compared to my original semester in 2010. I'm ready for a change, It's time to put Newark to sleep for now. I'll return one day in the future, divine timing that return will have!

I'm now living in Birmingham again after one year, gosh this time around it feels really strange. The everyday things are becoming more familiar, but Birmingham has changed a lot over the past twelve months as a city, do I know you anymore? Yes, my blog has flourished beyond all of my previous expectations, I'm confident my first semester back at University after placement will provide some colourful times that create great reading for 'Desperately Seeking Adventure'. I want to get the most from Birmingham, aiming to discover sides of this city that I previously haven't seen. I have accomplished good things so far. I have recently been to the Eastside and the Jewellery Quarter, forget the world because Birmingham's my oyster! Blogging wise, I have Birmingham in my sights with only three semesters remaining, I am going to seek and find the best bits of this city! Birmingham will have my full attention, I have those new eyes to see things differently. Keeping it real I didn't drink a lot in the States, so it is time to make up for that! 

Adjusting back to lectures has been difficult, I'm not going to lie but at the beginning of the new term I wanted to get on a plane back to Newark! Honestly! Managing Human Resources and International Travel Operations! Give me back my Virgin Atlantic uniform back so I can work the Clubhouse again! I'll take on the most angriest of passengers to get out of these modules. I'll be fine because I have no other choice not to be, life is life so I can hope for the best! Parlez-vous Fran├žais? I have taken on the challenge to learn French again, mind you I haven't properly learnt French since secondary school! I'm ready for those lectures and assignments, I will miss the independence that I gain from working but student life will suit me fine for the time being, I am sire of that! Thank goodness for the Maltings Halls of Residence, that place keeps me grounded and keeps things interesting. I know that this semester will be a game changer! Birmingham, how it feels to be back, it feels so good! I am keeping it together! I am trying! 

Getting back out into Birmingham has been a pleasure, I have been able to reconnect with friends that I had not seen for over one year! Kelly, my best friend who's originally from Hong Kong has reintroduced me to the joys of Bubble Tea. Caffe Chino, a cute Oriental cafe was shown to me by Kelly just the other week, I had no clue that this place even existed! Transporting me back to my nights spent within the crazy of New York City's Chinatown I appreciated having somewhere like Caffe Chino a short walk from my Halls of Residence. I'm looking to visit my fellow intern and friend Paolo, who lives in Huddersfield so I better get looking for a coach because those trains are much too expensive for my student budget! Not forgetting Tom, my other British intern and friend from my airport days, I'll be getting to his hometown of Northampton soon after Huddersfield no doubt. I do miss the Realness of Newark! This reverse culture shock has been very real, I'm seeing a familiar place with a brand  new pair of eyes! 

I have eighteen months remaining at UCB, but what I will do after I graduate is another question entirely?! I have my eye on some Cabin Crew job openings with Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways but anyone of them would be an amazing job opportunity to snatch! Fresh from my previous airline based work placement I have toyed with the idea of applying for Cabin Crew with Virgin Atlantic Airways to use my previous experience as an advantage. Keeping my options open and my head in the game because I still have three semesters and a dissertation to compile, I'll worry about getting a job when graduation beckons. Getting back into life and dealing with reality after my placement in America hasn't been as easy as I previously thought it was going to be. I'm good with being back in Birmingham, I know its not forever. I have the opportunity to seek adventure somewhere else in the world when the time comes! I've been in a bubble, Birmingham will be my home away from home for now. Back to life, back to reality! 

Bitch, Get It Together! 

Joseph Harrison


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