Student Accommodation- First Year: How Is It?

Student accommodation is a really mixed bag experience so I will simply be listing my experience of the accommodation. In 2022, my first year as a student I stayed in Albert Court. Albert Court is the LJMU accommodation for the first years. To sum up; I believe that around 8 months is enough to explain a full detailed post on what it’s like. What it’s like at Albert Court.

Inside the Room on the first day

It’s cheap accommodation (in comparison to other options) so there’s not much great to expect. On the first arrival; I decided to unpack everything and then check if everything is clean. To my horror- the toilet was absolutely disgusting- whoever cleaned it can NOT clean it at all. Inside the rim of the toilet had faecal matter everywhere. It’s as if the person who was supposed to clean the toilet only cleaned the top of it. It really wouldn’t surprise me if this is how it looked the day that the last people left.

No matter how cheap your accommodation is- uncleaned toilets are just not a good look. Abhorrently disgusting, really. To get away from the toilet problem- there’s actually quite a lot of room in the accommodation. Especially after visiting one of my friends at the Grenville Street accommodation. The room is pretty much double the size of the average accommodation. There are enough room and storage spaces to put your stuff- there’s also a storage space if you remove the mattress. Most people didn’t realize that, but it’s best if you use that to put your important stuff.

The shower room- is incredulously small. Not much room for the shower and it feels as if it gets mouldy fast- so make sure to clean it often! Black mould is not good for your health!

Student Accommodation Maintenance

I mention that since on maintenance day in November-December the person looked through my stuff. I had left my laptop on and then realized when I came back to my room that the person had pressed on one of my chatrooms. Therefore, it really comes to me as if privacy isn’t an important thing here.

When it comes to self-maintenance the first thing you notice when you hoover is that the carpet is terrible. Dust, dirt etc. sticks to the carpet easily and its material feels rock hard. It takes a while for the vacuum to vacuum it up and it’s just really an annoying inconvenience. Whatever that stuff is- it’s definitely not carpet; not to me at least.

Before I end this section- we should explain the kitchen. The kitchen is big and spacious – a nice communal area for other flatmates. The only problem is that there were firebrats inside the kitchen when we moved in. It’s honestly disgusting. We didn’t mention it to the accommodation for fear of our deposits being taken away. Though in reality; it felt as if the insects were cleaner than three of my flatmates.

Flatmates! Good, or bad? Let’s see!

Well; it really depends on who you get. With students, the common relative occurrence would be that they’ll be gross and dirty. Most students don’t get taught by their parents to clean or cook. Some just have mental health issues, despite that, I find it gross that they can’t clean after themselves. Throughout the year there’s been nobody taking the bin out apart from me and one other guy. The others didn’t simply clean up, they expected it to “disappear”.

Student Accommodation Trash
This is not my neighbouring flatmate but another flatmate. He simply didn’t want to change the bin and take it out after I decided to leave it for a while tied up. I left it for a few days and the trash kept accumulating until he finally changed the bin. But it really shows how disgusting some people can get. It tends to be people who rely on their parents too much. Sadly, society has gone this way where people don’t get told by their parents to clean up.

My advice- just suck it up. It’s student accommodation; you should just expect it’s going to happen. I’m just posting the images of the last month in tenancy since there’s really no excuse for grossness after the exam period is over. The subject of this photograph is my neighbouring flatmate who screams, shouts and leaves a trail of trash with them… and also set off the smoke alarm while having a lit candle in her room. No window open, simple. Not to mention that it’s against the tenancy rules as well.

Of course, this is very much directed when the others have done things. But you really should just expect grossness if you move in. Advising the person reading this- if you move into accommodation; be clean. Just literally be clean and don’t be an insect.

Student Accommodation sink
This is what your flatmates will do to the sink if they’re dirty. My neighbouring flatmate simply only fries food and DUMPS the oil into the sink. Then doesn’t drain the water or oil afterwards and leaves it for the next person. It’s really gross.

Final Thoughts on Student Accommodation

I really can’t say it was the best experience of my life but it’s taught me to tolerate others. Being in accommodation away from your parents can help mature you. Even if you don’t accept what others do; you can tolerate it at least. What makes each accommodation different is really the amenities provided and quality of life. It’s fairly good- especially if you get better flatmates than me haha! Hopefully, anyone reading this who moves in gets people who can clean- but always make sure to be clean! It helps improve your mental health and studies as well!

If you’re looking to learn how to cook while studying; which saves money and is a fun way to spend time- check out our cooking page! It’s made to help students save money and well- learn a very important life skill! Ready-made food is just simply nasty for your health in the long run.

Activities in Liverpool: The Seagull Trail!

Need activities in Liverpool? No worries about that! There are many things to do and follow there! As long as you avoid areas that look shady and keep in a good tourist sense- you’ll be safe!

Activities in Liverpool- Go trailing with seagulls!

On this photographic project that I have undertaken in Liverpool- we will be following up with seagulls and following their trails. Where do they go and listen to them socialise- it reminds you of the sea! Seagulls are seen as pests by many people but the truth is that seagulls are only like this towards us because we have taken their food source. Thus this has driven them towards our cities and urban developments.

Activities in Liverpool - Seagull
Seagull looking down onto the tourists. Source: Joshua Obara Norwood Photography

Therefore, not only does going on a seagull trail recognise the impact humans have had on the climate and environment. It’s also a fun opportunity to explore the city through the lens of a seagull and explore parts you’ve never been to before! It’ll be an experience for a tourist who wants to experience a non-linear trail and the results are random!

There are many parts of the city centre which you can visit; for one of the trails- I had gone to Rupert Lane Recreational Ground. Though, personally, I must admit that the place wasn’t great at all when I visited. There was trash around the area and someone came up to me and started to sexually harass me. It turns out that it’s used as a cruising site for some men. So I would advise going to that area if you are going to Liverpool.

To advise the tourist- I would say you should go in the early hours to do a seagull trail. Think of it as a morning exercise but more fun and interesting! There are fewer people outside and traffic is quiet therefore you can follow the seagulls unhindered!

Seagull flying in Rupert Lane Recreational Ground.
Seagull seems to be having a good time flying!

The seagull trail can help you reconnect with nature as well- especially in a city when we are all disconnected with concrete blocks everywhere. Sometimes a bit of green in a grey space really adds something to our happiness and wellbeing.

My Seagull Trails in Liverpool!

Here is a list of seagull trails I’ve done in Liverpool and where they have landed me. Most of them are links to blog posts as a short form of them is not as interesting as the full story!

  • 19th March 2022: A Seagull Trail – A Photographic Journey. This journey was done by following seagulls out of my student accommodation towards the World Museum. If you’ve not visited the world museum- you should! It’s got some great spectacles and especially so if you are touring with your kids! Usually, at the time I had carried this seagull trail out it was really busy. I had left at around 14:02 so there were a lot of tourists and keeping track of seagulls was hard. I would recommend doing the trail in the early morning where there isn’t much traffic so you can enjoy it more!

Climate Lab- The Last Day of the LAB!

This post explores the last day of the LOOK Climate Lab at the Open Eye Gallery!

The LOOK Climate Lab was an exhibition at the Open Eye Gallery that lasted from the 13th January to the 20th March. It was organised into 4 separate concepts, linked on their site. You can view my walk-around video of the gallery below.

A quiet tour of the Look Climate Lab.

I valued the exhibition while I volunteered at the gallery; makes you realize how our lifestyles harm those living in worse conditions. How can we complain about the effects of climate change if it does not starve us? We created it- and yet we don’t see the adverse effects as bad as those who never contributed. Small lifestyle changes can be used to help reverse the effects of climate change.

LOOK Climate Lab: Gallery 3
My favourite part of the exhibition. Copyright of the film previews is subject to their creators. If one wishes to take it down please email me.

My opinion on the “Energy” phase of the exhibition.

This section of the exhibition was rather eye-opening to see how much energy we waste. How simple would it be if we could all afford aerogel? Insulate our homes and lose less heat energy while using less energy. Countering this with the fact that- if our homes are insulated; in the summer how would we react with air conditioning. Air conditioning contributes to climate change as well.

More insulation may mean more air conditioning- as with the Earth getting hotter; I think that it might be a cycle. Though I do not have any qualifications or knowledge in science- so this is just an uninformed opinion and take it with a pinch of salt!

Funnily enough, the aerogel’s texture is powdery! You’d never really expect that with a gel.

LOOK Climate Lab – Food

I will admit; I did not pay much interest to the two in-between phases. Therefore, I can not comment on them. Though I believe that it had shared insight on how we can remit some effects of climate change if we start to grow our own produce.

The small exhibition at the end by Hellen Songa was very eye-opening and shows how much easier it is to start growing. It also shows the community feel to it, you can view her exhibition on Open Eye Stories as well.

The third gallery.

Going to the third gallery we saw a LOT of films playing- I didn’t really watch them, however. Problematically, in my opinion, there is no place to sit while watching the films so I didn’t want to spend hours watching a video standing up. It’s just not convenient or comfortable. A gallery I believe is supposed to be a comfortable space and not alienating of anyone. It can possibly be seen as an accessibility problem.

As much as I love the Open Eye and enjoy volunteering at it– there are inevitably going to be some problems I encounter.

Other than that, there were plants inside of the third gallery. For instance- I took one of the spiderweb plants home since they gave some of them away at the end. It’s actually quite nice to see plants inside of a gallery space- it makes it more down to earth!

Seagull Trail – A Photographic Journey

A funny seagull on the Seagull Trail
A rather funny angle of a seagull on the trail.

A seagull trail is a trail in a city where you follow the seagulls and where they’re going- perhaps they’ll lead you somewhere that you’ve never been before. The best times are in the afternoon when it’s primarily bright, and that’s the prime time that the seagulls are looking to find food!

The seagull trail in Liverpool has brought me to the prime location of the Albert Dock, which of course, tourists are heavily populated where they will tend to feed the seagulls. Or perhaps- have something that the seagulls want to steal! I suggest bringing a camera on the trails so that you can take amazing photographs of the seagulls and probably send them as lovely little postcards to people!

So, follow me on my trail as I left my flat at Albert Court on London Road- I proceeded to follow the seagulls heading towards the Walker Art Gallery, where lots of them sat down on the lampposts! They then guided me towards the St. John’s Gardens, full of remembrance flowers for the fallen in our wars (mostly the first and second world war(s))- and much beautiful architecture. Views of the area are stunning, with the grass being nicely cut and the statues imposing themselves upon the garden.

Seagull Trail: Seagull looks confident.
This seagull is looking quite confident!

From Dale Street To Pier Head

I then followed the seagull trail down through Dale Street and Water Street to the Pier Head- there were many scaffolded buildings that I photographed, thinking they were great for pictures! The sun imposing itself onto the buildings makes the photographs very majestic despite the ugliness of scaffolds. Down at Pier Head was usually busy but even more active with the seagulls, mostly resting like cats. This, paired with the highly bright day, had created a unique photograph- along with the wind, therefore, creating “Contemplating on a Windy Day”.

Then I followed the seagulls further when they took off- over to the Albert Dock and the surrounding area where they’d steal your fish and chips! Seagulls are not that unique at all, but it’s still fun to follow them on a trail- they just prefer to visit populated places just for the food. They’re really not so different from us at all, haha! It was getting dark at the end of my seagull trail, marking the course’s end! I’d recommend making a seagull trail for anyone who hasn’t done one since they’re sometimes very random, and you can unconsciously find the photograph you never knew you’d loved to take!

View the rest of the images here.

Listen to the podcast version

Royalty Free Photo’s of Rupert Lane Ground (Colour)

Please attach the license wherever you use these photographs. Simply copy and paste along with the image and credit with this;

Photography by Josh N. (joshuaobaranorwood.com)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

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A Visit to the Garstang Museum

garstang museum
It’s really looking at you! It’s surely dead? R.. right?
The photograph was taken by myself, the subject of the photograph is property of the Garstang Museum.

On Tuesday, I visited the Garstang Museum, its quiet and compact, which is a huge contrast to the World Museum, which is usually really busy and, in my opinion, hard to digest information due to the loudness. Therefore, the Garstang has definitely been a much more pleasant experience!

It contains artefacts excavated by John Garstang from 1902 to 1936, expeditions primarily funded by himself by which he sold artefacts after his returns to fund subsequent expeditions. Usually, expeditions during that time had a lot of colonialist influence. One of the museum workers told me that he had very little of that influence when they were looking to decolonize the museum. Though it’s probably that the mummy who was (supposedly) stuck in an office building for decades is now housed in the museum might disagree!

The items on display range from Greek, Etruscan/Roman, Sudanese, and Egyptian to the Middle East. I was pleased to see that Sudanese artefacts were on display due to the lack of public knowledge of their culture concerning Egyptian history. Most excitingly, a mummified Egyptian was most likely a royal family member due to its crossed arms. This mummy does not relate to the painted coffin box, which I was told by the museum worker. Though the coffin box is around a couple of millennia and still has most of its paint, it reminds me slightly of Mondriaan’s artwork- only a little bit, however, haha!

The rest of the collection contains Roman coinage, Greek pottery- a collection of burnt objects from an Egyptian tomb, a mummified cat inside a child sarcophagus and much more! I suggest anyone reading this should visit the gallery as it offers a lot of insight into the culture and civilizations that were once such mighty states. I say that it shows that any civilization can fall from glory and into a museum collection!

Location

The Garstang Museum is located at 14 Abercromby Square, Liverpool L69 7WZ. You can view it on the map below!

Podcast

Check out the previous post in which I interviewed Dr Emma Roberts on her Jamaica Making exhibition!