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  • Placards and banners everywhere I look.
    Pounding (but in a beautifully orchestrated way) drumbeats engulf my ear drums.
    Students shout over and over in union.
    What do we want?
    Free Education.
    When do we want it?
    Now.

    A week ago was the national demonstration for Free Education.
    Along with 10,000 other students, I marched by Parliament.
    With my unstylish blue jeans, tight red jumper and morning hair I grabbed one end of a banner and began to make my way through London.
    I had never been part of a protest, a demonstration, a collective so large fighting for the same thing.

    Students from far and wide united in one cause; long hair, skinheads, anarchists, feminists, those who didn't side with the politic parties, those who did, smiling faces, angry faces, masked faces and by the end, some injured faces.

    Where I was, who I marched with, we did it peacefully, simply walking and chanting our message loudly to every day Londoners, Tourists and then finally, outside Parliament in Trafalgar Square. We cheered when people showed support, laughed at hilarious and witty chants and most importantly we felt empowered to leave the march at the end of the day and do more to achieve our goal.

    Reports later said there had been arrests and damage to property. Fences kicked down so that areas could be accessed for protest.

    Police brutality. One video of a man, walking peacefully within a group that was moving quickly through the city, was brought down by three police officers and injured quite seriously. Black eyes and bruises were later posted on social media.

    My buddy (rule 1 of demonstrations, always have a buddy to look out for you) told me over and over 'I can't get arrested Tom'. She had already been handcuffed at a previous demonstration. She sat back with me and another friend, also a virgin to these kind of things, and talked us through how it worked and what to expect.

    Did it work? Who knows. They didn't listen last time, I doubt they will this time. I think back at the Tom of three years ago, what he wrote about and cared about, and this wasn't it. Now it's important. This is the future we are talking about. I have spent my whole life umming and arring over what my own opinions on things are, and I'm so prone to changing them if someone feeds me a rational understanding. It's difficult to fight with such passion for something when I know that any minute I could be thinking something else.

    Doubting Thomas they should call be, which is ironic because three years ago I was just about to finally admit I was an atheist.

    I don't really know why I wrote this. Probably because at the moment there isn't much interesting going on in my life. It's quite depressing, and I think I'm getting quite depressed.

    It's nice though, to come back to Cowbird to read and share stories.

    It's time for another drink though. I'm getting used to writing in bars. Just pissing away my Education. The one I've paid so much for. At least if it was free, I might be able to afford a pint. I'm rambling now. Bye.
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