I've been waiting for a taxi for some time now when a huge group of students wearing false glasses arrive. Preoccupied by the “Geek Party” they're soon to attend, they're oblivious to anyone else around them, excitably chattering and unthinkingly rushing forward as soon as a taxi arrives. We've followed the system and are doing the British thing - waiting in a queue of equally weary folk. Realising I may well spend the night outside Royal Cars if I'm not assertive and continue to allow this queue-jumping, I charge towards a taxi as it pulls up, climbing in the back, ignoring the protests of a wide-eyed boy and girl who claim I'm being aggressive.
Living in a “student city” like Leeds guarantees a population surge every September with the influx of returning students or newbie freshers. Although I was a student once in this very city, it is now over a decade since I graduated and at times, I find it almost impossible not to be exasperated by the flocks of fresh-faced students over-running the city.
Having been infuriated last summer by the tendency for everything to shut down during the university holiday period, I recognise the positive impact the student population brings. As an ex-Leeds student, I'm also of course grateful for my degree and all the fond memories I have from my student days but I can't help but quite illogically resent this student invasion.
Perhaps I'm envious of their lack of responsibility and the prospect of new beginnings but this inexplicable feeling I have, seems to be one I share with a lot of friends who were frankly grateful to have finished their degrees and finally be earning money. There may well be the perfect basis for a sociology thesis here but lacking such a degree and the jargon that accompanies it, for the moment I'm going to call this phenomenon The Post-Student Paradox and continue to display the unfathomable symptoms that go with it.