A peculiar kind of nostalgia

I went to the 'alumni, applicants & friends' reception of my Alma Mater tonight (well, alma mater, not quite: I only spent one amazing year there, during a Master's, and I there learned all I ever needed to learn). The familiar politeness and good-natured spirit of the English, soothing and refreshing.

Primarily: young kids, 18, starting their first degree at Alma Mater next September. My name tag was colour coded for 'alumnus', so they came to me asking for advice and guidance. Yes, it was amazing, yes, it will be the greatest time of your life, yes, this is an exciting topic, yes, yes. Yes. Yes: the answer to every eternal question. I partly envied them; I partly wished I was like them all over again, starting in the quadrants, halls and cloisters of Alma Mater; I partly felt proud to have been there and to have studied there.

Walking home, I felt lighter and stronger: a good thing in this bout of depressive low I am going through.

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