Editor’s comment: Whatever your results, life takes many turns
PUBLISHED: 10:30 09 August 2020
It’s a terrifying 25 years since I took my A-levels so the results-day nervousness felt by many this week is but a faint memory.
I remember going into school (Elizabeth College, in Guernsey) to find our whether I had the grades needed to take up a place studying philosophy at University College London (UCL).
As it turned out I hadn’t quite hit the mark. My A in maths and Cs in Spanish and French were the same points-wise as the two Bs and a C I needed, but not the right grades. I spent a while on the phone (possibly a pay phone) until I had confirmation from UCL that I was in. How different would my life have been had I studied at Warwick, my second choice?
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I may never have fallen in love with north London. I lived my first year in Camden and a few years in Hackney. I was pretty directionless after graduating and spent a while selling CDs from a bag before moving back home, broke. Maybe that would have happened anyway, or maybe I’d have settled in Warwick, doing whatever folk do up there.
I spent a number of years in Guernsey working in finance and concentrating on my band before moving to Kensal Rise with my then-partner. I worked in the City before, one day, quitting with no plan. I only turned to journalism because a couple of friends recommended taking a course. A few jobs later and here I am.
The last 25 years may have been entirely different, or maybe London and journalism would have come into my life through a different route. There is no way of knowing.
Best of luck to anyone whose family members are getting results in the coming weeks, or getting results themselves, but, remember, however they turn out, there are plenty of directions that life can take.
• We’ll be running live online coverage on August 13 (A-levels) and 20 (GCSEs), as well as reports in the paper the following weeks. Send your stories and photographs to firstname.lastname@example.org
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