A scarlet steam engine was waiting next to a platform packed with people. A sign overhead said Hogwarts Express, eleven O’clock. Harry looked behind him and saw a wrought-iron archway where the barrier had been, with the words Platform Nine and Three-Quarters on it, He had done it.
Smoke from the engine drifted over the heads of the chattering crowd, while cats of every color wound here and there between their legs. Owls hooted to one another in a disgruntled sort of way over the babble and the scraping of heavy trunks.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (1997), J.K. Rowling
First of September is here, and the Hogwarts Express is once again leaving without me. Suddenly we’re in the ninth month of 2016 and summer is coming to an end. Schools in the UK are starting next week, whilst Swedish schools have already been in session for the past two weeks. My friends studying at Swedish universities have already had their fresher’s week with the first lectures starting earlier this week. I am yet to start; my fresher’s week doesn’t start until the 17th with my first lecture as late as the 26th. But luckily, my friends start to come back this upcoming week, with the first one to come back Sunday.
It’s amazing and even a bit scary, that it’s all gone so fast. Just a year ago, I was trying to see my friends for the final times back in Stockholm whilst stressing about what to bring with me, and the “oh my god, I have to sort out and pay for my own insurance!” stress. (I just recently paid for the next 12 months of insurance – same amount as two months’ worth of food)
Tomorrow is the last day of my full-time working life, and from now on I’ll only be working Thursdays and Fridays. Even though it means less money, I’m honestly so happy because I’m not prepared for this 5 days a week in a row and waking up at 7am. I’m not really sure how I’m going to be able to cope with that after graduation and basically forty years onwards. I’ll probably just end up going to university for the rest of my life.
The best thing thought about living in England is that summer seems to stay on a bit longer here than back in Sweden. (or at least my definition of summer, a Brit would probably say that autumn is coming soon) Even though my friends and I don’t live in our castle anymore, and are split up in different houses, we’ve still promised to lay on the grass in the quad, so I’m hoping for some sunny days after the lectures have started.
I hope you’re all having a great first of September, no matter if you’re in school, a lecture, at work, or just enjoying the last days of the holidays.