Thursday, October 9, 2008

Photo Diary: Downtown Oxford

After a few days mainly characterized by vast amounts of walking and attempting to stop spending money, I now have another photo diary to post (and looking through my album, I see that I took a crapload of pictures, so this may have to go in two parts). This covers downtown Oxford (Broad, High, and Cornmarket Streets) along with some (read: one, more will come later) shots of the Bodleian, and Balliol, Merton and Christ Church colleges. After I was done meeting my psych tutors today, I just, uh, took the very long way home. And get to truck all the way out to North Oxford tomorrow to meet my writing tutor, so I'll take more pictures then, and I also need to get started on my first official Oxford assignment (YAY). It's for psych, about social cognition in infants. But that's the boring stuff. The pictures are more interesting.

The entrance into the Bodleian quad. As you can see on the left, a great deal of Oxford is being renovated right now.

The Sheldonian Theatre, where 'freshers' get to go for Matriculation. Which is, they put on silly gowns and do a lot of prancing about. Since I am not a fresher, nor enrolled at the University for the full duration of my undergraduate work, I sadly get to miss dressing up and prancing.

Looking from the Bodleian down Broad Street. Balliol is just a bit further and on the right.

A peek into Balliol, which depending on who you ask is the oldest or second-oldest college in Oxford. Amusingly, the board just to the bottom of the shot claims that it's the oldest with a founding date of 1263, but they might want to take that up with University College, which claims a 1249 founding date.

Almost at the corner of Broad and Cornmarket Streets. Just to the right there is a small church and a graveyard.

And this is the graveyard. Probably haunted, like most of Oxford is supposed to be.

My camera has a bewildering habit of deciding to flash or not to flash (it must be the electronic Hamlet) whenever it wants (or does not want) to, so this picture is a little dark. In any case, this is one of the oldest buildings on Cornmarket Street, at the corner of Cornmarket and Ship.

Looking back down Cornmarket.

A part of the Examination Schools, which are apparently hiding all the lectures in Oxford.

Cobbled Merton Street, which leads off High Street.

A corner of Merton College.

A better look at the tower.

And the front of the Merton tower. As you can see, it was actually a lovely day, which evidently is something of a rarity for England, but I'm getting a bit spoiled, since both today and yesterday were so nice. And as I was leaving, they actually rang the bells, which was both unexpected and quite nice.

One side of the front quad of Christ Church College, which is one of the largest, most beautiful, and most tourist-centric colleges in Oxford.

The other side of the front quad.

The distinctive bell tower of Christ Church. Again, my camera playing shenanigans with the lighting, also partly due to the shadows.

I just realized I forgot to get a picture of the staircase into Hall, which I could swear was the one where they filmed Harry and Co.'s arrival at Hogwarts in the first movie (it looked awfully familiar...) That is bothering me. In any case, since bits of Christ Church were used for Potter, it's probably shown up somewhere.

Christ Church Hall. I am now realizing that several of these photos are a little blurry for some reason, which is annoying. I didn't think I was waving the camera around.

Looking the other way in Christ Church Hall.

The interior of Christ Church Cathedral, but this picture is also rather blurry for some strange reason. Clearly, supernatural activity.

The altar in Christ Church Cathedral.

Looking back to the bell tower from the entrance to the cathedral.

This is I believe the entrance to Queen's College, with the spires of Magdalen (pronounced, bewilderingly, Maudlin) in the background.

Somewhere on High Street. No, I can't remember where.

In any case, there will be more pictures tomorrow, since I'll take a detour through the Bodleian on my way back from North Oxford. I ran a test route on Wednesday and am halfway certain I know where I am going, and I have proved to be remarkably adept at navigating, but even then, this could end in humiliating failure.

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