9 challenges of being away from UC Berkeley

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Now that summer has officially begun and most of you are back home or traveling, you’ll find that readjusting to life outside of the Berkeley bubble can be surprisingly challenging. Being away from Berkeley means that you can no longer depend on Bear Walk to take your drunken self home. Don’t worry — we’ve all been spoiled by the conveniences that UC Berkeley offers us. Here are some of the trials and tribulations that many UC Berkeley students are currently facing.

1. Berkeley time does not exist in the real world.

Sadly, life does not run 10 minutes after the hour. Your parents or employer expect you to arrive at the specified time. Those extra 10 minutes now will mean a lot more once you’re back on campus.


2. There is no late-night snack stores available only a short walk away.

Restaurants and shops near campus are prepared for the late-night snackers, but now that you don’t have Asian Ghetto next door, you realize that most restaurants close at a shocking 10 p.m. Your leftovers are now your only salvation.


3. Everything is now so much further away.

Although we complain about having to walk so much every day, everything is actually really close in comparison to how other people live. Now we have to go through the effort of hauling ourselves in a car and driving for what seems like forever just for some french fries. And don’t even get us started on having to parallel park.


4. Your parents are very present in your life again.

One of the best things about college is that you make your own rules. Being around your parents every day is a huge reminder that chores, curfews and guidelines used to be a huge part of your life — and now they’re back. Your parents’ favorite four-letter word, “P-L-A-N,” is here again.


5. Hanging out with friends now requires some effort.

Back at Berkeley, your friends were literally almost always a foot away from you, so it was easy to spend time with them. But now that you’re back at an actual house and the TV is easy access, it requires a lot of effort for you to pick up the phone and make plans with a friend. Good friends shouldn’t judge you for choosing binging on Netflix over hanging out with them.


6. The night starts so much earlier.

With classes, clubs, studying and other various activities occupying your time, you usually don’t have free time to do whatever you want until at least 10:30 p.m. Now that you aren’t constantly on the move, you find yourself going out at 8 p.m. and coming back before midnight in order to meet that pesky curfew.


7. The #tu is not available whenever you want it anymore.

From frats and apartment parties to co-ops and live music, there is always something going on at Berkeley if you feel like going out. Being away from Berkeley makes you realize that booze, loud music and sweaty bodies are a luxury only saved for college students.


8. You actually feel guilty about not exercising.

Before, you could rationalize not going to the gym because you walked miles to and from class. But after only eating and sleeping all day, the guilt starts gnawing at you to turn on that brand new workout video that you bought years ago.


9. You now have time to get bored.

Living the busy college student life makes you forget what real boredom feels like. It isn’t pleasant. With nothing to do, you’ll even voluntarily drive your sibling around just for a reason to get out of the house.



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Contact Deborah Zheng at [email protected].