A day trip to York

I've got an interesting relationship with York.

I went there for university in 2010 and at first couldn't believe my luck. I'd wander around the city centre so grateful that I'd moved to such a beautiful city.

I met some great people and have some really fond memories of parts of my time there.

However, my whole experience there wasn't rosy, and by the time I left in 2013 I had a very different picture of the place.

My mental health had taken a bad turn and that combined with other factors meant I left university in a pretty wobbly place.

I'd retreated into my shell and the Sophie who set off to university was not the same person who emerged at the other end.

I'm so proud of my degree (English Literature) and there are parts of my time there I loved, but York ended up carrying the weight of some very tricky memories and a lot of struggle, anxiety and sadness.

Since graduating in 2013, I've only returned once for a couple of hours, where I pretty much went to one coffee shop and left again.

Last week, I returned to York.

Despite the fact the weather on the surrounding days was awful, Friday was bright and breezy with not a drop of rain.

We wandered the streets of the city centre and the Shambles.

We went to the Castle Museum, to stroll down the Victorian Street and explore the prison.

We tasted our way through York's Chocolate Story.

We ate great food.

We visited York Minster in all its beauty.

We tracked down my old favourite cupcake shop and met the new, lovely owners.

I fell back in love with York all over again.

I've replaced those memories of struggle and defeat and retreat with happiness.

I've restored my first picture of York: a beautiful, historic city full of so much character and wonderful people.

It was more than just a day trip. It was a day of correcting those memories which had got a bit tainted along the way.

It was a marker of how far I've come over the past couple of years.

It was one of the best days out I've had in a long time.

Sophie x


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