Life of a Direct Year Two ME freshman who feels like a freshman stuck in a senior’s world.

by limmie

Full of words. It’s day three since the last paper but somehow it doesn’t feel like it, infact longer.

Here’s a prelude (or is it called a prologue?) to why I am here.
I turn to writing because it makes me feel a lot way heck more better after. Secondly someone’s stuck in camp until NOW when he should have been booked out yesterday. Trying to face this ‘Army’s Logic’ and coping with our ‘Pain of no weekends together’ right now. AND! Since I’ve been asked a couple of questions to why I chose to go NTU Mechanical Engineering and the Direct Year 2 path. I was that same clueless helpless junior that didn’t know what to expect of my choice, only that it would probably affect my future real greatly.

Here’s whatever that can flow through my head and how I traded my social life for school.
Bearing in mind, I was the kid that once spends at least 6 days a week out somewhere, bunch, dinner, movies, pools, karaoke sesh, Playnation, sitting by Vivo, all. that. fun. free-feeling. times. (Missing it right now. I’ll explain more perhaps why I am right at home right now.)


Coming out straight from poly and with two options on hand, continuing my Aerospace path in SIT or diverting towards the general field of Mechanical. I was feeling optimistic about being able to score well, possibly holding THE 5 point Zero, having a cca I would be enjoying. AND having that same amount of fun times Ngee Ann had sent me. THE ABOVE, was a dream.

Pre School
There were MANY types of Orientation Camps to look out for. Namely a few were CAC camp, SU camp and Sports camp. And then there were the camps that each faculty/division held. The time frame for each camp could hold up to 7 days. Excited but half hearted (contradicting much. because someone was going to be enlisting, so.) I signed up for SU camp only. I did consider the engineering camp, perhaps that would have been a more relevant option and an easier way of finding ‘friends that will be by your side in class’. There were ‘waiting periods’ where the camp facilitators would choose their campers. Finding out that I was selected made it special. But I guess I was hardly in the social mood. THE different feeling of making new friends all over again and having those post camp weekly meet ups was no longer appealing to me. AND maybe the jc kids were much more enthu after having been on a long long break.

First two weeks
The CCA Fest made the week interesting. Sign up for this, sign up for that. But the turnout differs from the sign up. I went on to try Cheerleading (not for my size sadly.) and Canoe (not for my toughness). After a long round, I ended up in one of SU sub-committee groups. 

School SEEMED easy. Lectures could be skipped because there were play back videos. Tutorials solutions were uploaded. One could just stay in their hall to catch up, Y NEED TO MOVE OUR BUTT TO SCHOOL?

Hall Life
THIS was the lazy factor. All the high floors and Stairs and roomate can make us lazy to even go to the canteen to get food. (Exam period especially) I live on just the second floor by the way. I had no hall life. It revolved around my nonsensical roomates and studying. And sneaking out for some cafe hunts when we go brain dead.  Or supper if someone drives up.

Why no hall life? Maybe because we choose not to. ALSO because we did not go for another 7-day-long camp. But MAINLY because of the direct year 2 path.

I’m not one who is able to live alone. In my first semester, my roomate was hardly around. It was a mental torture for me and breakdowns were really frequent. It is VERY IMPORTANT to have a roommate that can suit to you living lifestyle. Lights on, loud footsteps, noisy one, one who snacks, I was lucky in the second semester. Living with my perfect roommate. Full of rubbish for each other. Even having the time to do facial masks.

The first semester felt IDONTKNOWWHY highly competitive. Study and study and study. The first 2 weeks of playtime gave regrets. Do NOT underestimate the stacking of video lectures. They can clock even higher than 16 hours of catching up to do. Throw in the tutorials of just a couple questions THAT CAN BRAIN FRY YOU. 5 questions can take us up to an entire day to figure out.

The second semester felt way better. Perhaps its the types of Friends that you now hag with. Studying together, settling down better. Everyone was. The competition no longer felt OVERLY pressurizing. 

Exam Period
Englishy Sherilyn now turns to Chinese Songs. Because I cannot sing to them. So I will not get distracted during the “I need to listen to music but cannot get distracted’ periods.

Hall can feel like ghost town. I am thankful my friends are not the kind who would go home to study alone. I am very thankful for Zhijun and Pearlyn. Being together to study. Their presence really mattered.

Given a couple of days off before finals, the routine was 

9.30am END the nua-ing. Proceed to study.
12nn When the mouth starts itching, its time to look for food.
5pm Beat the dinner crowd in order not to waste time. Eat early.
3am Sleepy means it is time for break.

In between, snacks naps dramacatchup shower and zoning out period cannot last for more than 15 mins.

Feeling the stress yet?

I guess THIS is what that makes UNI life memorable for me.
Life long friendships I do believe they are possible.
But it is difficult in finding a friend that you can really call friend. Because in UNI, this ‘selfish’ thing is SUPER common. Find a senior who’s willing to share their notes with you. It’s as good as your lifeline. I am very grateful to Sining, VERY.

I guess I am out of brain juice.
While others say NS boys will find outhow important their families are to them. I did so too. During the hall period, I found myself missing y family a way lot more. THIS is one of the reasons why I have spent my first three days simply at home. I need to ‘recover’ the time lost spent in school. At times when I felt like giving up, (YEAH, the MC when people choose not to sit for their papers when they have ‘no confident’ in scoring) mum was there to tell me not to give up so easily.  12 modules later, zero MCs so far, even though there is THAT feeling before every single paper.

Next up before completing this semester FOR REAL is EID, the compulsory project module. AND then that pain of cooking up your own timetable for the next semester again. 

When doing so, some important things to take note are
1. The Exam dates for each mods shouldnt be too close.
2. Tutorial lessons shouldn’t be piled all in one day because mid terms are usually done during tutorials
3. The Tutor that is going to be in charge of the class. A good one goes all the way out. You need them.

Year one, or two. Is over. That relief. Overwhelming sense of completion and achievement of surviving.

AND lastly. ALWAYS squeeze time in for the NS boyfriend. He needs you like how you need him. Mentally, physically, whatever. Heehee. The encouragement and motivation that you two take turns to give each other, SUPER important SUPER necessary. There can be difficult periods, but. THAT will be for another post. 

Else I can start ranting another essay out. Cause like RIGHT NOW, I feel like I am on standby mode. Waiting for good news for somebody to book out because the timings are never settled. Miss you Ben toh. Hurry come out and see my face before you have to fly off. One month. My next dread is arriving.