England! part one

I love England. I have spent most of my life wishing I were English. Actually, that's partly why I didn't study in England--why destroy the illusion? No, really I feel that now is not the time for me to live in England, although that day will come, I'm sure. At any rate, imagine my excitement when I took a train from Edinburgh to Kings Cross, London! I was very excited. But part one of my England entries is devoted to Oxford, not London, because that's where I was headed first. My excellent mood even survived the train being late and not arriving until after the tube had closed. Can someone explain why in God's name the tube closes? If the subway doesn't need to close, London's underground doesn't. It's completely insane. At any rate, after a very expensive cab ride and an extensive search for a cash point, I arrived at the bus stop for the Oxford tube, near Victoria station. The cab ride was actually a nice tour of central London. It felt really good to be in a big city again. I had some time to enjoy this feeling as well as notice my own exhaustion while waiting for the bus, which was half an hour late. Finally, after a late train, a cab that got stuck in traffic at midnight (?!) and a late bus, I arrived in Oxford--at 3 am. I went to Oxford to visit my friends Genevieve and Brad from Columbia. Gen is a junior at Columbia, studying astrophysics at St. Peter's College, Oxford, for a year. Brad is a post-grad doing something with poly sci at Christ Church. More about the colleges later. First, let me explain how wonderful Genevieve is. I met her when we were both in the ensemble in a Columbia production of Hamlet. I got sick during the production and ended up only doing one of the performances, but met such fantastic people during rehearsals! Genevieve is not only wonderful for standing outside in the rain for Hamlet, but also for standing outside in the cold autumn air for my bus—for an hour! Thank you Gen!!! Brad was less brave. He didn’t meet me at the bus station, but instead showed up at Gen’s place later.

On Saturday morning, I got a special tour of a few of Oxford’s prettiest colleges. Oxford is made up of lots of small colleges within the larger university. Each has it’s own quad/central area with old buildings and gardens and “keep off the grass” signs. You have to pay to get into them if you’re not a “member” or the guest of a member.

This is the bell tower of Christ Church, which has an incredible quad and beautiful hall. Ask Brad for the entire history of the college, he knows is by heart.

This is Magdalen College, which is very pretty. I don't know why I took so many pictures of this one and not the others, but I did.

This is the beautiful library...

Brad and Gen stading outside some college, I don't know which (Brad, Gen, if you guys know, tell me please):

Really cool gargoyles, I don't know where, but seriously zoom in if you can they're awesome:

Yay for perfect weather and a perfect two days in Oxford. Who knows, maybe I'll be back one day soon to get an advanced degree of some kind!


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