Since my last posting, I have found much more satisfaction and enjoyment here than I was previously experiencing. It takes some time to become familiar with a place, and I have always found that for a place to feel like a home it has to first feel familiar. That’s not to say that I have run out of things to explore and discover. Quite the contrary in fact, I am discovering just as much now as I did when I began a month ago. Case in point: at 4 am just last week, when I was finishing up my two papers due at 9 am, I discovered how everyone else was still asleep, how dark it still was, and how much I still had left to do! My discoveries have not all been purely academic though. With what free time I do have, I am spending it on jazz clubs, pubs, evensong services, autumn walks, art galleries, British television, cooking and exploring England. Just the other day, in fact, after I finished those essays, I awoke at 3pm and went for a beautiful walk around the parks of Oxford, and visited Oriel, Corpus Christi and Merton Colleges. I also went to Christ Church Picture Gallery and perused their renaissance pieces. Later that evening I enjoyed some fine dining (McDonald’s) and then went on to a Classical concert. Later I went in for a seasonal ale at my favourite pub called Chequers, which has wonderful red leather chairs, the kind which you would see by an old fireplace in a Victorian library. And to top it all off, I finished the night by making oreo milkshakes with friends and watching episodes of Arrested Development. All that in one day! Granted though, most of my days aren’t as leisurely as that. Most of my time is taken up with working away in some corner of the library, but that’s okay because it’s what I came here for.
Earlier in the week I was off in Dublin visiting an old friend from High School which was a real treat. Unfortunately though, the one full day I had of sight seeing was shortened somewhat, as I accidently slept in until 3:30pm! That’s alright though, Fortuna compensated me by putting a Lithuanian model next to me on the plane ride home. I can’t remember her name or how it was pronounced, but she was very beautiful and gave me a lot of candy! We chatted the whole way and she told me all about the life of an international model, and I told her all about Oxford. She suggested I consider part time modeling, and I demurred by pointing out the size of my giant nose. She seems to believe there is a market for big nosed models, so maybe if Oxford and TWU don’t work out I will be a model…
This afternoon I was out and about for a pleasant and tranquil stroll along Addison’s Walk, which is a path bordering a deer park, enclosed by giant oak trees. This walk was a favourite of Tolkien and C.S. Lewis and a favourite of my father’s and me also. Tonight is jazz night which is my favourite night, and tomorrow I and some mates are going to see a play called ‘History Boys’. It’s all exciting and it’s all memorable…and furthermore it’s (relatively) inexpensive for students!
By tomorrow however, I do need to be working hard again and also making some big decisions. I get assigned my first tutorial essay question tomorrow (I have been a 5 day mid-term break) and so life will be back to the library. And tomorrow is the day by which I have to decide whether to stay in Oxford for the spring term or to come back to TWU. I haven’t yet come to a definitive conclusion, though I have thought and prayed about it a lot. I won’t take up any more space here concerning it, but I’ll tell you of my decision next time.