first, four days near Oxford to visit at least one new student there.
may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a
good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught
up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
very nice, with all those 13th century spires and the bustling High Street and
all, but much better to install ourselves peacefully in North Moreton and commute
into town daily. The North Moreton House, a 16th century B+B, is a fairly inexpensive
and very charming place to stay, with very kind hosts, minutes from Dipcote on
the Thames rail line into Oxford.
can avoid all those Brits who persist in driving on the wrong side of the road
just by taking the train into the city for the cost of half a sausage.
North Moreton Church, and its graveyard curiously sparsely inhabited. Almost as
if, as in Switzerland, they're digging them up every 25 years and tossing them
into the lake.
main street of North Moreton
We're still looking for the North Moreton pub. We'll try South Moreton next.
is the excellent church in Ewelme, just east of Wallingford, and this is . . .
. . .
Kristin showing off her comfortable pink shoes in the Ewelme
cemetery. There's a story about those shoes, but it will not be told until 25
years after the passing of all participants.
cloisters of Ewelme church
sarcophagus in the Ewelme church, one of a kind probably
a 15th century gimmick, in its own way -- oh, those De la Poles, always going
for the big laugh. The lady neatly carved on the top in the conventional dead
manner, i.e. praying and sleeping at the same time, all dressed in sober and comfortable
nightwear, is Alice Chaucer (the poet's granddaughter), wife first of Thomas Montagu,
the 4th Earl of Salisbury, who was killed at the battle of Orléans in 1428,
and then the widow of William de la Pole, the Duke of Suffolk who was killed in
died in 1475 and here she is -- all cute and pious up there on top and (look at
the sculpted figure at the bottom) all nasty and skeletal underneath. Memento
you're feeling better than you look, Alice.
south of Oxford. We're on the way into the university town on the mighty Cherwell to
visit a brand new student at Somerville College and do a little champagne with
Sir Michael Scholar, the President of St John's College, and Angela; let's save on the train
fare and walk on in along the Thames.
path, and a cute little boat-thing. Readers who vividly recall Conrad's description,
at the beginning of Heart of Darkness, of the Thames stretching out to
the four corners of the world will find this placid scene reassuring.
locks on the Thames at Sandford, about halfway along our little walk into Oxford.
A nice family chugging along the river in their cute little boat, also reassuring
just been four days near Oxford, seeing the sights and making sure that a new
student at Somerville is settling in nicely, driving on the wrong side of the
road and rekindling our passion for basic pub food. Now we're going down to the
north Devon coast for some serious walking. You can see it here if you stay back
a bit and don't block others' view.