It is a truth universally acknowledged, that as soon as exams roll in, so do the sun and the high-twenties temperature. You are probably (certainly) battling procrastination or need a break from spending hours bent over sheets of paper at your bedroom’s desk (because the library gets busy from very early in the morning, and, let’s face it, there are some sacrifices some of us are not willing to make, ever). In any case, getting on your feet and going for a walk might do you good. In one of my college’s email newsletters, it said – in between articles about never leaving your door unlocked and the summer ball – that moving for about an hour per day could do wonders for your concentration. So there you go, you finally have the perfect excuse to enjoy the gorgeous weather outside. Please do not spend it lying on a blanket in the sun outside! As idyllic as that sounds, you will only get a headache, a sunburn, spend the time nervously on the lookout for a sneak geese attack and you will end up covered in geese… stuff. Here are some suggestions as to how to spend that precious and fleeting hour of freedom (and do not worry, I do not recommend anything as drastic as a trip to the gym).
What makes us so lucky here at York, is that the campus is a freaking park. No need to go to the city centre, just do a tour of campus. Feed the creatures –sorry, ducks- from the bridges, explore the little footpath you’ve never been to before, have a wander in the Quiet Place, smell the flowers (but watch out for the bees). From my own experience walking around campus and the information imparted by my admittedly dodgy iPhone walkpacer, circling campus is about 3 to 4 kms.
If you would rather go to the city centre to get uni out of your head for a while (totally understandable), you could either go to the Museum Gardens or Dean’s Park, but I prefer walking the walls, starting from Bishopgate (next to Clifford’s tower) all the way to the Minster. If fending off the tourists and their cameras seems too exhausting for you, walking along the river might prove to be the perfect solution. I usually start at the level of Bishopgate and walk all the way to the Millenium Bridge. An added bonus is that the Fulford area is full of charming houses, and there is Rowntree Park on the other side if you want to stop for a ’99.
Good luck for your exams, remember the sunscreen, and in the words of the wise J.R.R Tolkien, remember that “even dragons have their endings”.