Izzy and a new friendIsabelle Duffy-Cross with permission for Varsity

The title, the column, the whole concept - yes, I get it’s a safeguarding issue. However, people like things that are a little scandalous, a little risqué, a little ‘Izzy, this really isn’t journalism, why did you include this as a column idea in your Varsity application?’

I laugh in the face of safeguarding. Or rather, I will - because I figured for my first sleepover it should be someone I could at least trust to keep me alive in order to write the article.

This sleepover was an impromptu venture with someone who is now a good friend, but at the time, was not someone I knew very well at all.

Having done Cambridge theatre together (pretentious), we decided to watch the ADC main show of the week.

To begin the evening, we thought it would be funny (because we are pure wit and scathing social commentary) to cosplay as indie girls. Donning a combination of skinny scarves, gilets, clip on earrings and comically oversized jeans, we headed to the ADC. As we’re all probably well aware, a key component of ‘indie’ is taking a 0.5 angle selfie, and so we did just that. We also got a random man to take a photo of the two of us, which in hindsight was a bit odd, but at any rate, the photographic evidence is below.

Isabelle Duffy-Cross with permission for Varsity

The show was enjoyable and we had expected to part ways at this point. Except, we then decided it would be funny to attend Clare Cellars, because yet again, are you really indie if you’re not spending your free time in that glorified cave sharing games of pool, mutual acquaintances and substance induced profundities? Here is a photo of the entrance to Clare College, and I hope you’re indie enough to already know what Cellars itself looks like.

Enjoying the beauty of Cambridge at night, we walked back to her accommodation for a pleasant evening stroll, and by then, it was too late to turn back. A sleepover was inevitable. She said I couldn’t possibly walk home alone to my hill college at this time of night, and for the first time after a year of ‘oh no it’ll be fine I do it all the time’ I actually agreed, but to be honest, I think I just fancied a sleepover.

Isabelle Duffy-Cross with permission for Varsity

She was a perfect host. Bringing out a huge selection of pyjamas, I performed a fashion show of the different options before settling on joggers and a t-shirt. Then, as no sleepover is complete without a midnight feast, we made DIY cookie dough and watched High School Musical in bed. Olivia Rodrigo’s album has now taken on a new meaning.

At last, it was time to sleep. Now, I’m someone with a laughably complicated night routine. We’re talking every night is a Vogue Beauty Secrets 10 step night routine type of night. I was feeling vulnerable without my plethora of skincare products, my retainer, or even a toothbrush. My friend kindly said use whatever you find in the bathroom, and you know what, humans really are adaptable creatures.

I slept like a baby. Put it down to the double bed, the delightful company, or the intoxicatingly nice-smelling body products I’d just stolen from her bathroom, but it was a great night’s sleep. My only qualm would be that weird feeling you always get the night after a sleepover of needing to shower even when you’re perfectly clean.

My only qualm would be that weird feeling you always get the night after a sleepover of needing to shower even when you’re perfectly clean.

The sleepover ended with a joyful morning cycle back up the hill, complete with a snap of King’s chapel in the morning light and followed promptly by an extensive toothbrushing.

Sleepovers are tough in term time, because everyone is so busy, myself included. However, my schedule will soon be freeing up considerably, and I will have time to sleep around plenty. So, if you’re interested in having me and a friend come to sleepover, please give me a message on @izzydcx on Instagram - realistically, for the shoutout in Varsity, and of course my stellar company, who wouldn’t want to be in the next installment of Sleepovers with Strangers?