Off to Oxford

Train stations are wonderful places! Here we are at London Paddington, on the way to Oxford. And I love the train station. That hangar-like roof, cavernous and held up by a steel skeleton, trains running in an out… The transport arteries, pumping passengers from the heart of the city to the rest of the body. That’s something from a sec 2 compre passage that I’m never going to forget. A very nice extended metaphor!

Well this is a good break from all the recent food talk.

So yes, train stations. Liminal spaces between spaces, a permanent place of transit. How poetically paradoxical. Such is the world we exist in!

The train seat I get is a ‘Quiet Carriage’. Ah! How nice. They should have this system on the MRT… front two carriages are quiet ones, no students in groups of more than three allowed. Or anyone under 12. Third carriage should be for older folks, purple ezlink cards and all, and fourth carriage for parents with young children and strollers. You know, middle carriages, closer to the lifts. Fifth carriage for anyone, and last carriage for noisemakers… Especially those people with mini boomboxes masquerading as earphones. Those people should have specific seats on public transport… Next to each other. Ha!

At Oxford’s Covered Market I have a little butter pork pie. Salty dense pork in a superbly buttery dense pastry. This is the enemy of dietitians worldwide, but it is so good. Nom. Nom.

Christ Church is pretty cool! It’s huge and beautiful, very statuesque. Why isn’t NUS like that? Oh well! There’s the great hall, which is the inspiration for Hogwarts’ dining hall, and the cathedral is pretty epic. I like the stained glass! Oxford is a lovely peaceful town.

A 5km walk takes me to Wolvercote Cemetery, where I visit the grave of the great Tolkien, and his wife. Luthien and Beren…

The serene silence of the cemetery tunes you in to the sounds of young kids playing football in an adjoining field. Bright voices, young life. Would not those in their graves be gladdened to know that life goes on!

Then off to a pub I go. Oh! Pubs are nice. The atmosphere and all that. It really is. I try an IPA… India pale ale. How it came about is really interesting, I won’t spoil it for you, go Wikipedia it! Truly a product of the British empire.

So this is what a university town is like! It is literally dominated by the university: buildings and colleges and faculties everywhere. I like the History faculty building!

Okay very abrupt post but well it was a one-day trip… Possibly appropriate?


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