Anyway, since I last posted on here, I have started, ended and most importantly survived my first term at Oxford! But now that I'm back in my college room, all my good intentions of working much harder this term have dissipated and I keep finding myself singing and playing candy crush... so I figure if I'm not working, I might as well do something slightly more productive! (yes, this does count, honest!)
There are a lot of weird Oxford things I could tell you about, such as the terrifying, life-threatening cyclists (no exaggeration!), having tutorials in my tutor's living room, and having someone clean my bathroom and simultaneously judge my hygiene levels and nocturnalism (I actually love Jan, but I'm sure she thinks badly of me). But probably the weirdest thing that happened was the start of my college marriage. (see, the bigamy isn't what you thought! Unless you already knew this story...)
For those who don't know, Oxbridge and Durham colleges have a system to ensure that every student in college has a "family" of parents in the year above you and siblings in the same year as you. And then there are also grandparents and cousins and stuff. So I have 3 dads and 2 brothers (yes, I do feel horrendously outnumbered), but the weirdest experience by far was acquiring my two husbands.
Apparently it's expected that freshers "get married" quick, as in during the first 3 weeks, which is extremely weird if you don't know many people. Also there are weird rules about college marriages, seemingly enforced by an undefinable "them". No one really knows who "they" are, or if they even exist, but they prohibit marriages between same-subject couples and college siblings (cause if they allowed that, it would make the whole practice weird, which it so already isn't).
But what all these "rules" mean (real or not) is that it's really really difficult to find a husband! A tip for other normal unis; if you want to make the experience of making friends during freshers' week more stressful, just add some good old-fashioned marriage pressure into the mix! Suddenly everyone is eyeing each other up and asking covert questions about who's still single, and despite all the insistences that it's completely romance-free, there was a fair amount of evidence to the contrary, along with some proposals that were probably more extravagant than real ones.
As I watched all the "eligible bachelors" being snapped up, I was left behind asking people if you really couldn't marry people from your subject. Before I even realised it had happened, I was one of the only girls left, with very few guys left. Since there isn't a "rule" against homosexual marriage, I thought it would be relatively easy to find a girl to marry me, without realising that they'd been grabbed somehow quicker than the guys (I later found out that there were more guys than girls, which sort of explained it).
I was even categorically rejected at a pub crawl, which somehow descended into a frenzy of sad unmarried people introducing themselves and getting married there and then out of sheer desperation. My friend tried to "set me up" with a guy who will remain nameless, and it was all fairly embarrassing and awkward, but not bad enough to excuse his much-too-definitive "the answer is NO", as if I'd been pushing it! No, of course I'm not bitter about it, I don't know why you thought that...
I was about to lose all hope, and was planning on investigating the mysterious "them" with the aim of requesting single parent-hood, because for some reason I really want to be a college parent. I even had a whole impassioned speech prepared, which mostly centred around calling "them" misogynist dinosaurs who were also discriminating against me because I'm Welsh/Chinese/State school.
However I was eventually rescued from having to do that (or possibly denied the joy of doing it), by two guys who hadn't realised there were any girls left, so had married each other. On discovering that I was indeed "single", they were so overjoyed at finding someone to mother their children that they immediately came over and got on their knees. It would have been incredibly romantic if it hadn't been so odd. Oh yeah and if they hadn't stopped to ask me my name just before proposing.
In the end, it was quite funny, and now I have two lovely husbands. And how many people can say they were proposed to by two guys in unison?(because that's obviously something everyone would want to be able to say) Together we have a truly screwed up family tree (between us we have 7 fathers and one mother... I think) in which to bring up our children come October. If you want to see a picture of the proposal and/or me with a double chin, here it is:
P.S. If you're wondering how Luke (my boyfriend) feels about the whole thing, he wasn't very impressed to start with, but once he heard about the lack of romance in the whole thing, he eventually came round to the idea.