Splash the cash: money diaries


By Anonymous

The Croft Magazine // Retail therapy? One student shares their spending decisions during the week before a lockdown announcement.

Day 1, Wednesday, £7.90

8:30am: Get out of bed and get ready. Speedily cycle to Pret in an attempt to get a table. The allure of free coffee means that Queens Road Pret has been rammed with Bristol students recently. Meet a friend and throughout the day make our way through 4 free Pret drinks each (big up Pret for the first month free).

1pm: Friend and I are bored of Pret so head back to mine. On the way we grab an Eat a Pitta (£3.90) because we are starving and because we must live up to our stereotype as Bristol students.

7pm: Head to the White Rabbit for a pint with friends (£4). Quite frankly the amount of time I spend here is slightly embarrassing.

11:30pm: I make some toast and a decaf coffee and head to bed. I’m currently reading a book called ‘The Lonely Century’ which is really interesting but a bit heavy for bed time.

Day 2, Thursday, £14.80

8am: Another early start! Today I am off to the Isle of Wight with my mum. A spontaneous trip before another potential lockdown…

11am: I run to the bus stop and buy a student single to Temple Meads for £1.80. I then stop off at Tesco to buy a classic meal deal for £3. Have been trying to meal prep much more this year and not buy food out, but alas I ran out of time this morning.

3pm: I realise I’ve forgotten my swimming costume, not ideal! End up running to the nearest sports direct and spending £10 on one.

4pm: Get the ferry to the Isle of Wight and meet my mum there. It is lovely to see her!

11pm: After watching the news (another lockdown is feeling much more likely), I decided to read. I’m taking a break from ‘The Lonely Century’ so instead choose a book called ‘One Day in December’ on my kindle. Although it is incredibly trashy so I don’t know whether I’ll stick with it.

Day 3, Friday, £0 (cheers mum)

9am: Hotel breakfast followed by a swim.

3pm: After a relaxing morning of walking and swimming we head back to the hotel for an afternoon tea – such a treat!

7pm: We buy picnic food from the local supermarket and eat dinner in our room whilst watching the movie ‘Late Night’. It was pretty good, not my favourite though.

Day 4, Saturday, £23

9am: Another hotel breakfast followed by a drive and a walk around a lovely area called Cowes.

1pm: I end up buying a coffee flask for myself (£20) and some rock and postcards as little presents for my friends (£3). We stop off for lunch and I have a very good hot chocolate.

7pm: Boris finally makes his speech and another lockdown is on its way. Oh well, I suppose it was to be expected. We go for a swim to cheer up.

Day 5, Sunday, £3

9am: One final hotel breakfast followed by frantic packing and leaving the hotel so we can catch our ferry back to the mainland.

12pm: I say bye to my mum as she drops me at the station, and buy another meal deal (£3) for the train home.

7pm: Back in Bristol now and I have some home-made sweet potato and leek soup for dinner.

Day 6, Monday, £24

9am: Get up and get ready. Off for a spontaneous trip to Bath today with some friends.

11am: £3 on a student bus return and then £5 on a day return to Bath.

12pm: Buy 3 books from a charity shop for £6. One of them is ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ which is what Ratched (2020) on Netflix is based on, so I’m excited to read that.

2pm: We stop off for a lovely lunch at this vegan café called Green Rocket, I have the gnocchi which is delicious (£10).

Day 7, Tuesday, £14

10am: My friend and I decide to go for a wild swim in Clevedon Marine Lake. The bus ticket return is £5. When we get in we realise it is absolutely freezing! Definitely glad we did it before lockdown though.

7pm: Head to the pub for a pint (£4) and end up getting another one for free because the pub was running out of everything we ordered!

9:30pm: Head to the co-op for some pre-election snacks (£5) before my friend comes over to watch the results.

Total = £86.70
This week was definitely not a normal week. I was far busier than usual, and after Boris announced lockdown on Saturday night I went a bit crazy, justifying everything by telling myself that I simply won’t spend as much during lockdown (which is true!).

Featured Image: Epigram / Lucy O'Neill

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