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My personnal blog on pretty much everything. Dev posts goes here, non-dev posts goes here too.
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Computer Science & Engineering school, D -2

Posted 08-29-2016 at 10:22 PM by SolarLiner

It's like everything is going to change.
And it should be right? I live in Toulouse, France, which is in the south of the country. I was born there, and the 18 first years of my life have all been concentrated there, with a few exceptions if we start accounting for the trips I took to Germany and Illinois. (Chicago was pretty great!) Everyone that I physically know, everyone that I love, live within a 100 km radius of my current home. My family and friends, past girlfriends and crushes, that history teacher that made me love history for a year in middle school, up to that math teacher in 11 grade with whom I was talking about astronomy and computer science. (With the logical intersection of that, of course, being Orbiter and Space Engine). I know nobody past that 100 km range, at least physically.
And tomorrow morning that comfort bubble of mine is going to stay here around the city, while I will step outside of it, 320 mi north into Blois, a "small" city some 90 mi south of Paris. It's going to be one hell of a trip, the reason being I never done a 6h trip, nor a long trip with which I'll be driving during parts of it... And I hate long car trips. You're constraining yourself to a single seat for the duration of the trip, and while there are stops everywhere (and it is recommended to do long trips in chunks of 2 hours), it is still eating up a whole day.
Then it's getting to know the new city, getting to know the new apartment complex I'll now spend my days in... Alone. See, that's the defining factor here. I'm barely 18, I just turned into an adult literally 2 months ago, and suddenly I'm thrown off the familial cradle because there's a chance I could end up doing my dream job... Which I still don't know exactly what it will be. All I know is, it needs to have code in it, and it would be better if it touched cyber-security, because I plan on taking that path. But 6 months ago I wasn't worrying as much as I am now. Is this also because I'm now an adult? Did I get infected by it? Is it curable?

Next to that, the fact I'll be studying in an engineering school doesn't feel like much. It's literally everything new to me, but it's like our senses; it's a logarithmic scale, that on top of the huge stacks of "such new, very shiny" things barely makes a difference anymore.
And the thing is, I don't really know what to think of the school yet, but seeing how they handled application files, it doesn't leave a good feel...
I had sent my application on the end of July, expecting not to get a reply until mid August because the school was closed. But then, nothing returned, no emails, no actual mail, nothing. I ended up calling them, for them to tell me "the applications are still being reviewed" (look at the title, we're two days before the start of the semester as I'm writing this). I needed to know because in the process of filing an application form, you are asked for two wishes for our second foreign language (the first one being automatically English), and also asking to apply in the international section of the school, where most of the classes are in English, and is destined to foreign students, with ~30% of the places available for French students as well. They (or we, depending on if I'm in or not) start a day earlier than the rest (and in my countdown I'm assuming I'm in). Which means I don't really know when I start. And they don't either. And there is no way for them to know the level of English for any of the French students that apply for the international section. I would think there is at least a rendezvous somewhere to evaluate, but so far, nothing.
So I don't know. I don't even know where I'll be, all I know is, it's gonna be great.
But then, I don't take that as a first impression, because it'd be like being Greenpeace evaluating oil refineries - it's always going to be the worst. And being bad in Administration tasks is secretly the national sport here ...

But in all of this, the most bizzare is; it feels surreal. No, not surreal, dream-like. Not in the way that it's all looking good and feels amazing, but in the way that I'm going to wake up and think this was all made up, that I should have seen the weird stuff that happens within dreams that suddenly seems okay, that I should have made a reality check (I just did and I can't breathe while pinching my nose nor put my finger through my hand, so there's that). Even though I unplugged my PC earlier today to load it in the car, even though my bedroom is depressingly empty, even though I've said goodbye to friends and family, and that I'm "wasting" precious sleep time to write this because tomorrow I'm waking up early to try to arrive there at a reasonable time... It feels like a complete staged act, I've been on the lookout for hidden cameras, that it is some kind of Truman show.

Am I ready for this? Aw hell naw. Will I ever be? I don't think so. I believe if I try to maintain as much of my current daily routine as I can, it'll be okay enough for me to manage. If I'm watching Quantico tomorrow night, I know I did good enough.

But the only way to know, is to experience. I'll slip into my blankets and sleep the night. A new everything awaits me.
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