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Deeply worried.....

Thread originally posted on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum on 27 Feb 2002, and now archived in the Forum Library.

Kiama  27 Feb 2002 
I just got a huge book through from Cardiff University, about applying for accomodation there. I am going there in September to study Philosophy, and I didn't realise it was going to be so expensive.....

I only get about 2,500 from the LEA (The people who give all uni students loans), but to live in a flat with a double bed/sitting/studying area, a kitchen/eating area, and a bathroom/toilet area with my boyfriend, on self-catering is going to cost me 4,600 a year! We've got to pay for all our food, washing, etc aswell on top of that, and I'll only be working as little as possible, and my boyf won't exactly be getting the highest wage in the world.... My family have two other kids to support, and my parents don't have much money left to spare after paying the bills, mortagage, etc...

I've never even had more than 500 in my bank aacount at one time, let alone 4,600! I'm so worried... I'm not going to be able to afford this, and I have this horrible feeling I'll end up dropping out of University cuz its so expensive.

I see it is true then, that the laws of the land are weighted against the poor....

I'm sorry I posted this here, but I had to write about it somewhere, cuz I'm so worried and I haven't told anyone yet...


catlin  27 Feb 2002 
Hi Kiama,

I can deeply understand your worries as I had to give up my studies 10 years ago (afer 5 years at university) for financial reasons.

Is there a chance to get a kind of study aid from European community funds? Did you inquire for that? I know there are some political/clerical or other communities who offer such things. Maybe there is a thingie at your university where you can get some advice.

What about the parents of your boyf.? Could they support you in a way? A lot of German students live in "WG's" eg some students share together a flat. Each has his/her own room, kitchne and bathroom are usuallly shared.

I earned my living during university as a waitress and all such crab-bad-paid jobs but the costs of living were and still are pretty high in Germany. I still feel bitter about all the time and effort I spent on university and everything turned to dust just because the lack of money.

I'll keep my fingers crossed that you'll find some means to pay for university and your living. 

Talisman  27 Feb 2002 
Gosh, Kiama,

This will not help you at all, but I will make you a promise.

The more dire the straits of your poverty, the more romantic is will all seem when you look back on it in later years.

It is wonderful to set your sights high and promise yourself you'll climb the loftiest mountain, but at the beginning of your journey don't try to swallow the whole mountain all at once. Just start down the path and follow where it leads you.

You've touched upon something that will help you. Poor students ARE a legendary tribe, and right away you'll qualify for initiation into this tribe. You'll be making new friends who share your same circumstances, and you'll be amazed at the day-to-day solutions intelligent and creative tribal members will come up with.

(And, serendipity will become a friend, too. You'll see.)

This is a case where misery really does love company. A lot of us could probably tell poor student days stories (and the more horrible the circumstances, probably the better the story), but maybe they wouldn't translate. You know, different generations, countries, cultures, times.

But, a feeble for instance. All you require is food, shelter, clothing, intellectual stimulation and the occasional luxury. (You'll be amazed at what can seem a luxury. An apple. A care package of cookies from home. A jug of raw red wine, empty peanut butter jars to pour it in, and friends to share it with.)

So, furniture is not on the above list. If you can find an unfurnished flat for a lot less, do it. Furniture has a way of inventing itself, or following you home, like perhaps bricks and boards from an abandoned construction site, a perfectly good three-legged table rescued from a trash heap, etc.

So, here's Kiama and boyfriend, sitting on the bare floor, hudled in blankets to keep warm in a drafty garrett. Outside a blizzard dumps feet of snow, and desperately hungry wolves from the countryside prowl the empty streets. You sadly eye the last crumbs from an old crust of bread. It's hard to study because your fingers are too cold to turn the pages of your book and hunger disengages your brain.

And, you think: "Ah, Talisman! Romantic my ass!"

Kiama, you can do this. I'm betting the challenge will only stimulate you.


Diana  27 Feb 2002 
Hey Kiama, don't start crossing those bridges before they come! You know, they might not even have been built yet!

After Talisman's post, there's not much more to say, 'cos he's said it all. But I reckon I'll find something to add if I search my brains long enough.

You are a young lady of great resourcefulness. And what about your knowledge of Tarot? Could you not earn some extra money doing readings? And get some more magazines interested in your articles? Magaines and newspapers are always on the lookout for interesting things to publish.

Talisman's right about being able to live with very little. For a few years my boyfriend (husband now) and I slept on an old mattress on the floor, our bookshelves were made of old planks and bricks. And our main meal was rice with bits of vegetables cooked in it. Our travelling was camping out on the local mountain on the weekends. Every two weeks we'd go to the movies, and they were so wonderful, because it was our little luxury. Now I can go to the movies every day if I want to, and it's not nearly as exciting. I have leather furniture and go on trips to foreign countries once a year, and put prawns in my rice instead of carrots. But those student days when we were poor - wow, they were worth all the diamonds and gold you could find.

Now you stop worrying about the future, okay? You'll find the solutions as they come along. 

Malachite  27 Feb 2002 
You'll always find a way to do what you want to....start doing it first, THEN worry about the costs...

btw...on the absolute minimum wage, its two days a week work to get 4600 a year...between the two of you, i reckon itll work out ok!..


btw...expect mail 

amyel  27 Feb 2002 
Yeah, what all of them said, K!

This is not said to start a Monty Python-ish "Art of One Downs-man-ship", but back when I was at uni....I worked full time and took a full course load. My sister worked full time and went to college PT. My brother, who has some vision but is otherwise legally blind, was the only one who completed college in the standard 4 years - because he received a full scholarship because of his "disability".

Even now, I hear of many, many students who have to work at least PT to make ends meet. Sure, you & BF won't be living the life of Riley (what does that mean, anyway??? This isn't Buffy's Riley, is it???? LOL), but I can assure you, you will be living! Once you "grow older" and own a mortgage and a car and such, you'll look back on these days as so carefree and fun. Of course the reality is that you'll have had your struggles, too.

So, that's my oh-so-grown-up-gee-i-long-for-my-college-days advice...:)

Don't give up before you even start! You're too strong and smart a lady! 

Kaleidoscope Eyes  27 Feb 2002 
Truth 1: You're right. The system *is* weighted against the poor. It's a rich (and usually white) man's world.

Truth 2: Screw Truth 1. The poor shall inherit, and besides, there are many more of us than of them!

Truth 3: Being poor and being a college student are an ancient, time honored tradition. It's all part of the education. Besides, nobody likes those snooty rich college kids, who grow up to be the a**hole rich (usually white) morons who run corporations and buy Presidents.

Truth 4: Believe all things really are possible. You have consistently struck me on this forum as a very intelligent, on-the-ball sort, the kind universities and certain educators love to have around. That sort of on-the-ballness can be its own currency in the higher eduation world.

Fret not. Just know what you want, envision it, believe. Do your best. Study hard. Learn to live with the utmost of simplicity. You will get there, I know it. 

New River  27 Feb 2002 
Kiama dearest, aren't you now glad you shared your fears with us? you've gotten so much good support here. if i had Talisman's pen i would have written the same words as he.

i am still struggling and still find it somewhat romantic. but then when you choose the artist's life, this is practically a given!

but gratitude is so sweet when we are thankful for a meal everyday and heat in the winter, a comfy bed at night and friends to share our laughter and our pain with us.

it is when we are feeling fear of scarcity that we have the chance to fine tune our thankfulness for all we do have.

i say continue to be fearless warrior kiama and carry onward thru the fog! you can do it!

love, light and hope, New River 

GeminiLady  28 Feb 2002 
I don't have anything near as wise to say as all the rest. But Kiama, don't give up on your dreams, no matter what!

ok, so I'm not original, but I am cheering you on. :-)

Love and Light,

Kiama  01 Mar 2002 
Thanks guys... I feel alot better now! :* :* :* :* :*

I'm actually looking forward to going to university, but I think me and the boyf are gonna end up being veggies when we're there, cuz meat's so expensive. Oh, unless I figure out how to cook fish fingers or chicken nuggets!


blue  01 Mar 2002 

I have one word of advice to offer you in your efforts to live the spartan life. Learn to cook! Some of the most wonderful meals I have ever made came out of a second hand pot on a hotplate. Your right, meat is expensive and it a luxury you can easily afford to do without.

I started my recipe collection when I was in college. You'll find lots of cookbooks at your local library. As a matter of fact I still use the same brown metal recipe box I started with, only now it's crammed full.

Soon you'll find yourself walking to the farmer's market every day. A big ripe tomato, some parsley, a head of garlic and a bottle of olive oil to put on the pasta in your kitchen. A meal fit for a queen.

Also, with your charm, the vendors and waitresses in your area with soon become your friends. They'll fix you up with a little something extra. Maybe a big piece of ramano cheese for that pasta.

Simple food is the best and it should be one of the greatest pleasure in life, even if you are poor at the moment. And don't forget the table wine in a peanut butter jar! 

Diana  01 Mar 2002 
Kiama: oh yes, please take Blue's advice. And banish all thoughts of chicken nuggets and fish fingers out of your mind. The chickens have been raised in hell and fed on rubbish, and the fish is of very doubtful origin. There are wonderful recipe books for beginners, with explanations, photos and stuff. You can make wonderful meals for practically nothing. 

Pollux  01 Mar 2002 

P.S. Sorry I replied so late, you know, I told you, got problem with Internet, no time... 

The Deeply worried..... thread was originally posted on 27 Feb 2002 in the Spirituality board, and is now archived in the Forum Library. Read the threads in Spirituality, or read more archived threads.

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