For my first post I thought I would let you know a little about my daily life getting to and from Uni. I live about half an hour’s drive from Leicester and don’t plan to move any time soon.
When I first started at the University I investigated my options:
- Park and ride
I immediately ruled out option 1, the parking situation on and around the university campus just looked like a non-starter, I haven’t even tried. I did look into parking permits but the thought of actually driving into the middle of Leicester scared the life out of me and I have been given the advice that if you don’t need to drive into Leicester then don’t! As a reference I have lived and driven in London so I’m not what you would call a timid driver.
Option 2 – park and ride. As you can see I was a little reluctant to give up my car and the park and ride seemed like a sensible option (and cheaper than the train). Unfortunately I hit a snag fairly quickly. The park and ride is great for an afternoon’s shopping but not for a PhD student who may (will) need to stay at the lab past 6:30pm some days. Option 2 binned.
So this is how I came to option 3 – the train, and I’m actually really enjoying it. Now I understand enjoying a commute sounds strange, but I like the time to myself where I don’t have to concentrate on anything bar my Metro and I don’t have to get stuck in traffic. My whole journey actually involves a 25min walk to the train station, a 20min train ride and then the final 10min walk from the station to the University. I’m sure the novelty will wear off, especially as the mornings become even colder, but one morning last week put me in a particularly good mood. Everything looked a little frosty and for the first winter in a long time I won’t be scraping clear the car windscreen every morning. I just need to wrap up warm and start walking and after a few minutes I’ll be fine.
For anyone with hours more set than mine I would definitely recommend the park and ride, their website here shows all the important information such as price and bus times, and I can personally vouch for plenty of spaces being available at Meynell’s Gorse.
I have a nice little routine going and so for now at least I will be a happy commuter 🙂 . The point of this post is to let people know that not living in your university city is 100% do-able!