Diary – Exams are Looming

When I woke up yesterday morning, I was still feeling groggy and tired, so – seeing as I have literally no time commitments at the moment – I went back to sleep for an hour, waking at 7am instead of 6. The night before I’d almost fallen asleep in the middle of Madmen, so I could tell that I needed the sleep. Once I was up I did my usual coding (although a bit less than usual, obviously), and then went to wake Anna up at half 8.

Somewhere amongst all of this, I had a realisation of just how close my upcoming exams are – the 8th, 10th, and 12th of May, respectively – and started to panic a little about how much revision I had already done, and how much needs to be done before then. So, when I’d sat with Anna while she had breakfast, I decided to look at some past papers, to get a clearer sense of what I was missing, and what I needed to revise before the exams. Thankfully, after reading the past exam papers, I felt more comfortable in my knowledge, as it is only really necessary to learn quotes for one third of one of the papers (which I’m on track for) – the rest are commentaries on extracts, so only really require an overview of the whole text, rather than the memorising of specific passages. Still, even though I’m now feeling a little more comfortable, I wish I’d prepared more (I made a plan, but not one concrete enough to stick to) and I’ve decided to devote more specific time to revision in the days up until the exams. The thing is, I can’t really do revision in large blocks, as I’m learning quotes and after a while it stops going in and I need to take a break to see if I’ve really remembered them, so I’ll have to increase the frequency of the revision, rather than the length of each session.

Anyway, yesterday I made good progress with my quotes for The Prelude – I’m almost able to recite them all now. I’ve found that a good method is splitting each text into three broad themes, and learning four or five quotes per theme, though Wordsworth’s sentences are very long, only having meaning if read over many lines, so I’m having to memorise more than I have for other texts.

This took up the majority of my day, but I also fixed the rear mudguard of my bike, which has been rattling about due to the fact the bolt that attaches it to the frame fell off a few days ago. I thought I was going to have to take the whole back wheel off for the job, as there wasn’t much room between the tire and the hole for the bolt, but in the end I avoided it with a bit of fiddling (and a handy pair of tweezers, which I used to feed the bolt through the tiny gap). I also fitted the new bells to mine and Anna’s bikes. Previously I just depended on my rattling mudguard to warn people in my way!

At around 5pm we had an early tea – Quorn fajitas – because we were going to watch Beauty and the Beast at 6, which we both thought was ‘ok’, but agreed that it was a little cheesy (which I suppose you have to expect of a Disney film) and the fact that Emma Watson was mostly acting to CGI characters made the performance kind of awkward. To be honest, I’m slightly dubious about all of these live-action remakes – to me it just seems that Disney are showing a lack of originality, banking on people’s desire to watch things they are comfortable with and know they enjoy, at the expense of the creative storytelling that is surely the most important factor of Disney’s success. Oh well, whatever sells tickets I suppose.

Today’s plan is more revision, coding, and at some point I need to make a massive stew of all the veg that needs using – partly for tonight’s tea, and the rest to freeze. I love freezing a big batch of stew – it means that when we need a quick meal or can’t be bothered cooking, we still have something homemade an healthy to eat. I enjoy making it, too, and it’ll give me a chance to continue listening to Musk’s biography. Anna’s just informed me I have to post her parcel, as well.

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