What could be more fun than public indecency before 3PM?Faris Qureshi for Varsity

Dear future me,

C-Sunday has been and gone for another year, and it’s time for some reflection. For those who are unaware, C-Sunday is a day of drinking in a field, so debauched that even your classiest friend is kicking off her shoes to climb a sweaty (and probably diseased) lamppost. Anybody who lives within a five-mile radius of my second year accommodation has probably heard me talking about C-Sunday: how excited I am, what I’m going to wear, who I’m going to see.

Now, fourteen hours deep into my hangover, too nauseous even for the punnet of strawberries by the bed, I am struck with questions about who and where I will be this time next year, on the morning after my last C-Sunday. I realise I have a decision to make: I can either write a Varsity article to my future self, warning her of the fruitlessness of expecting too much, and the fruitfulness of unexpected human connection. Or I can continue my staring contest with the pigeon eyeing me through the window.

“Even your classiest friend is kicking off her shoes to climb a sweaty (and probably diseased) lamppost”

Okay, now that the pigeon nonsense is out of the way (I won), on with the prophesying.

I hope I’m hungover. No, really, I do. I spent my first year at this University settling in and floundering and missing home so much that I forgot to look around and take note of how lucky I am to be here. And I don’t mean lucky because of the academic opportunities (although, of course, I’m grateful for those too). What I mean is everything else: the pockets of friendship you find in the most unexpected of places. Sure, C-Sunday really is an excuse for hundreds of barely-adults to dress up and get far too drunk with (mostly) no consequences. But it’s more than that, too. It’s the coming together of all of the students whose goal is not to merely survive their years at Cambridge, but to live them.

But I also hope that I’m not disappointed, because for all its beauty, C-Sunday is simply not going to be the best day of my life. Or anyone’s life, for that matter. And that’s okay. We put an enormous amount of pressure on these milestones, set our expectations untouchably high, and then are left wondering why we’re not having as much fun as we thought. University will be the best years of my life. Freshers Week is the craziest week ever. May Ball is going to be the perfect night. We need to give ourselves a break, and enjoy things for what they are, not what we want them to be.

“C-Sunday is simply not going to be the best day of my life. Or anyone’s life, for that matter”

Future Lauren, I understand the allure. I really do. The sun is shining, your finals are right around the corner, and this is your chance to let loose. By all means, make J-Green your playground (get hay fever within minutes of touching the grass), join a drinking soc (as if they would have you), do some day drinking (run out of alcohol by 5pm only to realise that Mainsbury’s has been stripped bare).

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t to say that C-Sunday can’t be fun. What could be more fun than public indecency before 3PM? But like we learned at Year 11 leavers (or if you’re from the north, any Friday night after school), drinking in a field is never going to be any more than exactly that. The only difference is this time we can buy the alcohol ourselves instead of waiting outside a newsagents for a grown man of questionable morals to buy it for us.


Mountain View

Cambridge students revel in sunshine for ‘best’ C-Sunday

So, Future Lauren, fear not. You haven’t failed C-Sunday because you didn’t wake up and go straight to the library, grinning to yourself about the hilarity of the day before. You haven’t failed third year because you’re yet to tick Darwin off your college brunch bucket list. And you haven’t failed University if you look back in 10 years and think, ‘actually, I found it all a bit hard at times.’ Because there is no failing at life, or at milestones, there is only doing. So make sure you do, and do plenty. Just don’t go expecting C-Sunday to be the best day of your life.