And just like that – they’re gone

Sunday afternoon. The University year is over, although not my year (yet). And suddenly, in the last 48 hours, the energetic lifeblood of the Warwick campus has drained away.

I got back on Friday night. Instead of the hordes of undergrads enjoying the warm weather on the piazza, there was only a handful of them. They’ve all gone, the 12,000 sub-22 year olds that make up two-thirds of this university’s daytime population. Summer has begun and the kids have departed, maybe for a season overseas, sleeping on the steps of cathedrals or riding pillion across India. Because they have the time.

I envy them. Because the only thing I’ve ever wanted is more time. I wish I could have my time again, a thousand times over: I’ve lived the best of all possible lives, but there’s a multitude of bests, and I want them all.

And sadness. The sadness that comes from the constant reminders that, all too soon, this strangest of years in my life will be over.

Goodbye, undergrads.