The Wild West

Posted by Tom Coope

The time has nearly come to head back to the familiar streets of Cardiff and although it will be nice to catch up with friends and settle back into student life in the capital, I’ve had a great time on placement in West Wales over the last couple of months.

I think we’re all quite spoilt in Cardiff in terms of the number of things to do and visit and so at first glance, there doesn’t always seem to be that much to keep yourself occupied when going away elsewhere. But it’s always fun to explore new areas and most students have no trouble tracking down the nearest pub at least. We’ve been out for meals a few times here and managed to find the local cinema too. It also makes you more appreciative of having so many great things right on your doorstep when you return to Cardiff.

A definite highlight of my time here however was going away for the weekend with the other students I’ve been on placement with. We decided to pack up the cars with supplies and head to a small cottage on the coast. It was a nice break from the hospital accommodation and even in January, we were able to enjoy the beach, where we spent most of the day. We took it in turns preparing and cooking meals and it was a good opportunity to get to know each other better. Before this placement most of us hadn’t properly met before. We all got on very well considering!

Pembrokeshire is renowned for its beautiful beaches and it’s nice to take advantage of them. I’ve really enjoyed being able to go for a short walk after placement to unwind. It’s made a change from getting in and sitting in front of Netflix anyway. I suppose if you live by the sea, it might seem less impressive, but it’s definitely been a refreshing change from the concrete jungle.

Tom wrapped up warm

Students have different experiences when away on residential placements, but I think if you try to make the most of where you are, you’re bound to discover something special. Approaching the end of my time at university, it’s also good to get a feel for where you might want to live and work in the future. I think this is an important consideration when you apply to university too. When visiting different cities on open days, it’s important to ask yourself, can I see myself living here for the next 3-5 years? I thought there was a good student lifestyle in Cardiff and it’s fairly close to where I’m from in Bristol, which were my main reasons for applying. It seems like a long time ago now!

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