And so it’s all over. In my last ever university exam I didn't read the question properly and only realised this half way through my last ever university essay.
For all that I would like to say I finished my 18 years of education with a flourish of intellectual brilliance, reality suggests hours of lectures and notes didn't even enhance my basic skills of reading and understanding.
Thankfully, that minor blip didn't hold me back from a 2:1 degree classification, but this head-in-hands moment does make me wonder if all I have to play with is knowing a lot about not much. Or, as Socrates put it: “As for me, all I know is that I know nothing.”
Not that it matters because I got a piece of paper at a fancy ceremony that says I'm clever. Not that that matters either, because it isn't getting me or my year group much in the way of a real job.
But for four weeks since the end of exams my friends and I have lived in blissful ignorance of unemployment, career aimlessness and the end of our interest-free overdrafts. Looking back now I see a beautiful Hollywood montage sequence of special memories and highlights.
The sequence starts with buckets of water being thrown over my head. As is customary in St Andrews, final-year students get soaked after their last exam – don't ask why. Friends line up armed with water guns, buckets and bottles and the recipient doesn't care that she is freezing because it's all over, it's the physical shock that accompanies the emotional and mental turbulence.
Then there was pier jumping into one of the bays on the east coast of St Andrews because it made sense at the time. And before I knew it I was looking at mini me's and their parents at the beginning of Grad Week.
Finally, I donned the black academic gown and carried a folded, cherry red hood. The past five years and a brief exile in Paris had been leading up to one walk across a stage but it felt like it took far longer.
Three words said by the Principal – et super te – as she doffed me on the head with the cap (once believed to be made from John Knox's breeches), someone hooked my hood around my neck and that was that: I became a graduate.
It sounds pathetic but I did feel different the next morning. My identity had changed overnight and as a graduate, my status in life is now synonymous with the big bad world: debt, unemployment and desperation. That's how the media portrays it and, asking around, it seems accurate.
People raise eyebrows if you answer positively to the question common in every Grad Week conversation: “And do you have a job yet?”
It is widely accepted that few graduating students have any formal employment that isn't in a shop or restaurant. I am lucky enough to have a job but it might last only until September.
And let me bask one more time in the Hollywood sequence. The end of the week was marked by the Ball. I had my hair backcombed to a height Amy Winehouse would have been jealous of and a perfect dress and high heels.
Everyone was there and everyone was happy. Better, I suppose, to remember friends who will head off to far flung places in their finery quaffing cheap fizz and laughing over silly things. I can't actually remember the end of the ball but that might be for the better too.
It took me a day to recover from the party and on the second day I gathered everything up, locked the door to my flat and got on the bus away from the little town which has only three main streets and for nine months of the year has over 6,000 students.
Fitting the cheesy coming-of-age tone of the week, it felt completely appropriate to have a little cry as the bus left the golf courses and the North Sea behind.
Of course I was crying for the friends I might not see for a long, long time and the momentous end of an era. But I was also crying in part because I was terrified of what happens next. I don't know what will happen to me. The new Graduate.
Rachel Hanretty has been HeraldScotland’s student blogger but will continue her story as a graduate entering the world of (she hopes) full-time work.
Rachel's graduation picture by Dawn White
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