“It’s difficult to meet new people if you don’t like to party”

“It’s difficult to meet new people if you don’t like to party”

A room of one’s own

14-06-2023 · Interview

Céline Camelot (18, Dutch/French), a bachelor’s student of European Studies, lives on Dorpstraat in a 70 m2 apartment with a kitchen, bathroom, two bedrooms and a living room. She lives with a roommate. Their total rent is 1300 euros per month, of which she pays half (650 euros).

When Céline Camelot opens the door, she is dressed neatly in black. Does she always dress this formally? No, she laughs. “After this interview, I have a negotiation simulation for class. I have to act like a member of the EU council and talk about Russia’s invasion of Crimea.” And yes, she’s a bit nervous. (A few days after this interview, she reported that everything went well and she had a lot of fun.)

Ancient Greek and Latin

She enjoys studying European Studies, as she is interested in politics and history. “Especially how people treat each other, how they behave.” This began in secondary school, where she spent a lot of time learning ancient Greek and Latin and becoming familiar with the history of classical antiquity.

Painted canvases

Canvases painted by Camelot and her roommate decorate the living room wall. Opposite the colourful wall, a green dinosaur teddy is sitting on the air conditioning switch. The two roommates are the only students in the apartment building; the other apartments are inhabited by working people. They are good friends and previously lived together in a student house in Maastricht with three other friends. They moved because they were having problems with the landlord; he would come into their home drunk and yell at them, trying to intimidate them. It was neither a safe nor a healthy environment. Fortunately, all of them were able to find alternative accommodation.

Although the two sometimes cook together, they have different tastes in food. She doesn’t like to cook and prefers to eat premade meals, while he loves cooking spicy food which she doesn’t enjoy.

Rows of books sit on her desk, in the sunshine. She used to read a lot and wants to get back into it. She doesn’t like serious books, but prefers reading something with a bit of humour in it. Her favourite is a Dutch novel entitled Ik geef je de zon. It’s about the lives of two twins, Noah and Jude, as they fall in love, go through the ups and downs of life and grow apart. One of the reasons why she likes to read is that she is a real introvert who needs time alone “after meeting people, to recharge”.

Introvert

“I like being around certain people I know well, and I enjoy hanging out in places I’m familiar and comfortable with.” She’s a bit shy and quiet, and often finds it difficult to talk to people in her class. “Everyone already has friends and they like to party together”, she says. “I don’t – it’s too noisy and crowded for me. It’s difficult to meet new people if you don’t like to party, as that’s what students mostly do.”

But things have changed since she joined a social group that her roommate has begun to refer to as “Mob Mentality”. The idea behind the group is simple: members come to events like game nights and cooking evenings, sometimes even inviting strangers to join them.

She goes home to Zaltbommel every week, which she thinks is “quite often for a student”. She mainly goes home to take driving lessons and to visit her family. “I usually spend most of my time relaxing in my room.”

Phone addiction

She can’t live without her mobile phone. “My phone is an addiction and a distraction. I use it to escape and to procrastinate on studying.” She spends most of her time on TikTok, engaging with funny content that is sometimes political.

Kathryn van den Berg

Author: Redactie

Photo: Ellen Oosterhof

Categories: news_top, People
Tags: room,student room,European Studies

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