Classes: Classes are settling in at this point. I still have a ton of reading for them (in fact, I’m procrastinating reading right now by updating my blogs… Whoops!) and they are still quite enjoyable. It’s much better to be taking them here than at Tech, despite the fact that 10 weeks of work is smushed into 6! The atmosphere here is so much more conducive to feeling academic! Or so I’d like to think!
Oxford in General: On Monday, I visited the Turf Tavern and the Eagle and Child with my parents. These pubs are my favorites that I’ve visited so far! The Eagle and Child is where the Inklings used to hang out and write and it’s really cute and small and the Turf is built on the edges of the old city wall and is where Bill Clinton famously (or infamously) “didn’t inhale” when he studied at Oxford.
I went to the Oxford Science Museum twice, once with my parents on Wednesday before they left :( and again on Thursday with my European Intellectual History class. The museum is extremely small and has a very eccentric collection. They have a blackboard that Einstein wrote on when he lectured at Oxford, some of Alexander Fleming’s things that he used in discovering penicillin, a first edition of Copernicus’s book, and lots of vintage cameras! In class, we were also given time to explore Blackwell’s, which I loved.
Expeditions Outside of Oxford: On Tuesday, I went to Highclere Castle (aka the filming location of Downton Abbey) with my parents. Unfortunately, it was raining when we were there, which prevented me from exploring the gardens, but the castle was really cool! I got to see the rooms that they use in the show! Apparently, they were filming there up to a week before we visited! Madness! They also have an Egyptian exhibit there — one of the earlier Lords of Highclere, the Earl of Clarendon, funded many excavations in Egypt, including the one that found King Tut — which was interesting to see.
Highclere Castle aka Downton Abbey!
Me at Downton Abbey! It’s like I’m one of the Crawley sisters :]
Saturday, I took the train to London! I first went to my favorite place in the world, the Victoria and Albert’s Museum. I had really wanted to see the Ballgowns: British Glamour since 1950 exhibit, so I checked that out and then went meandering around the museum. I found this really awesome theater exhibit that included old props, costumes, set designs, and all sorts of fun things. Let’s just say I was nerding out a little! I then hightailed it to Albert Memorial to meet my friend. We then headed to Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street to browse and be typical tourists and then went to the National Gallery. The Gallery is huge! We got to see one of the paintings we spent a long time studying in our Art class, the Arnolfini Portrait. Afterwards, we walked around Seven Dials, which was very quirky, and then went to Knightsbridge to browse the other big touristy shopping area before I left for Oxford.
Eros in Piccadilly Circus