Cambridge

Today I went to talk to a career advisor about grad school and she threw me one hell of a curveball.

She strongly suggested I consider applying for a scholarship program to go to Cambridge. This is the first time anyone in an academic setting has told me I was Cambridge material.

I don’t know what to think. It’s a highly-competitive scholarship and I’ve honestly got nothing to lose by applying (I’ve been shooting for the moon a lot lately) but what if I actually get accepted? I’ve started to really get settled here in the Northwest US.

Don’t get me wrong, I love England immensely. I consider it a spiritual home and part of me is overjoyed at the prospect of returning to study at a prestigious university. Still, I have friends here, and I find that the Northwest is a very special place for me, like no place I’ve ever known, culturally somewhere comfortably between middle America and Northern Europe and climate-wise just right for when I’m missing the drizzly temperate English weather.

Also, it can’t be like it was last time, in 2003. I have pets. I have a nice car. I have a fiance, an actual long-term relationship with someone who loves me tremendously. I’ve tried managing the transatlantic lifestyle with all that is precious to me an ocean away and it’s more than I can bear now, at this point in my life; maybe if I was still 19 and filled with the spirit of carpe diem I could do it without hesitation, but I’ve had my reality check. If I were to relocate to the UK even temporarily, I’d have to consider taking as much of my life with me as possible and that’s a tremendous challenge.

There’s still time to think about this. There’s every chance I might not even be accepted and I’d be through agonizing over it once and for all. On the other hand, I could be set for life if I get into a school like Cambridge, and it would do my heart good to stand on English soil again, but life is complicated and offers no simple answers.

I had never given this any serious thought. I don’t know what to do or think about this.

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