I’ll be honest, before arriving at Carpe Noctem Vitae on the 16th June, I had begun to loathe this trip. Organising a holiday for a group of 24 students and answering their – more often than not – infuriatingly obvious questions (sorry guys, but seriously, GOOGLE) had worn me out to the brink of tears. I convinced myself I’d hyped it up too much and certain members were waiting to see me crumble and feel smug about it. When I arrived at gates to Royal Holloway to pick up a small percentage of my entourage I wasn’t exactly feeling pumped, but more like a list of weekly chores had been handed to me by my mother and I was just about to empty the dishwasher. I am sure that by this point it must have seemed quite apt that the name printed in bold on the back of my tour shirt was in fact “Ice Queen”…

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Fortunately, pretty much as soon as we were collected from the airport, my doubts and concerns drifted away. Upon arrival at Carpe Noctem Vitae (CNV) we were greeted promptly by a group of long-haired and bearded blokes with mysterious hidden identities. They did all the passport checks etc, before detailing us on the events that were coming up that evening and each night of the week. Needless to say we were all pumped and rearing to go; I was a little miffed that up to this point it was all working out, and that the trip I’d been carrying like a baby for 9 months hadn’t fallen to pieces. We swiftly got dolled up, downed our free beers, necked some absinthe and headed to some underground bar whose name I cannot for the life of me remember, but I do know it was open mic night (this sentence sums up most nights). The drinks were cheap and had triple the amount in a single measure compared to what we were used to in our nasty Student’s Union, so needless to say we all got very merry, very quickly. On stage a former Classical Society member even decided to steal the show by making a surprise visit that all but one of us knew anything about.

That evening all sorts of drunken drama and antics played out, but it was a perfect start to an epic week. I’m going to break the rest down into smaller posts later – for now check out the video!

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