Missing Manchester

It’s been 2 months since I’ve left Manchester. I ended my semester-long exchange here in mid-December, and after a 2-week trip across Europe, I reached Singapore, right on time to usher in a new beginning.

So, what took me so long to come up with a reflection post? I guess I’ve finally had time to myself so I could pen down my thoughts about these 3-4 months. In between finishing up the essays for my alternative assessment and starting a new semester back home, it was easy to put off the writing of this post. The fact was that i was in denial – I didn’t want to face the fact that exchange had come to an end for me, neither did I want to think about all the things I was already sorely missing.


The daily commute to and from school. Oh, bus 147, how I miss running after you.

Wetherspoon’s breakfasts, a gem I discovered far too late. It’s the simple things. Less than 5 pounds for probably the most delicious English breakfast I’ve ever had? Yes please.

How much students here use their voice, to stand up for a cause they believed in.

Strike for pay cuts, the student union building was always decked out in banners and posters publicising some public campaign or another. One that caught my eye was the bright orange banners that called for an end to gender violence. I remember another campaign that aimed to raise awareness about the issue of homelessness in the town. To someone like me, who comes from a country in which platforms for voicing one’s opinion in such a public manner are not as established, these signs and events were amazing.

Afflecks building, and the well-known “on the 6th day, God created MANchester” sign. Blasphemy? Maybe. Quintessential photo spot for anyone who visits the town? Definitely.

In the meantime, I’m still receiving promotional emails from UNiDAYS and Virgin Trains, as well as emails advertising day trips to UK towns. Perhaps I’ll unsubscribe to those in a few weeks’ time, but for now, let me hide away in the corner under my blanket so I can pretend it’s still winter in Oxford Road.

Day Trip to Alton Towers Resort

By Poon Yun Xuan, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Hello again! It’s been almost 2 months since lessons started, and Reading Week has come and gone. Honestly, where did all the time go?? A few weeks ago, my friends and I decided to make the responsible decision to ignore our growing pile of work and visit Alton Towers Resort over the weekend. I’m such a sucker for amusement parks, so this day trip was right up my alley. In this post I’ll be taking you guys along with me on my day to the theme park!


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First Impressions

By Poon Yun Xuan, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Hello everyone! I’m Yun Xuan and I’m a Linguistics & Multilingual Studies major from Singapore! I’ll be spending a semester at the University of Manchester and I’m so excited to be sharing my experiences with everyone here.


Let’s start with my first week here! Orientation was held during the first week, and there were fairs held for the different clubs and societies, as well as for sporting events. The first week definitely encapsulated the lively university spirit, with all the events and tours and talks and people handing out food discount vouchers (pizza and burritos for 1 pound? Yes, please!) Continue reading