This. Obviously I’ve instagrammed the shit out of this – I went the whole hog on saturation, filters and that teardrop thing – but I swear the Magdalen tower vista was at least 70% this beautiful IRL as I went for a rain-slicked jog (ok, powerwalk).
I had my first tutorial. The tute system is pretty unique to Oxbridge; typically, you’ll write an essay, then meet up with a Professor (and maybe 1 or 2 other students) to discuss it. I was super intimidated as I walked into my Professor’s college suite; a room replete with wainscoting, ceiling mouldings, wrought iron fireguard, mantelpiece, divans, wingback chairs, writing bureaus, bombe commodes… (ok, now I’m listing fancy furniture). But then my Prof bounded into the room, whipped out a metallic turquoise yoga ball, and started bouncing on it like he was in a Space Hopper Race. He was so encouraging (and high energy) – it was less Cold War interrogation scene, more Macaulay Culkin/Disney age-switcheroo movie.*
Captain’s Cocktails: Our first college rowing party of the season was held in the Oscar Wilde Room. Even the Lucille Austero-strength G&Ts weren’t enough to distract from the fact that there was a disturbingly enormous portrait of a sultry, lounging Oscar Wilde taking up an entire wall. I was going to photoshop his head onto a Mills & Boone cover to give you an idea of the steam/creep-factor, but I’m in the common room and I’m pretty sure a few seniors overhead me muttering ‘Oscar Wilde porn’ a few minutes ago, so yeah…not going to fuel that fire.
Erg Trial: The most torturous 10 minutes of my life. I spent the 2 hours following twitching on the floor like a Kafkaesque cockroach, before nibbling on a Kinder Bueno and falling asleep in the shower. Again.
I finally bought these books!
I felt incredibly guilty because (a) they’re heavy hardbacks so I’ll end up seamailing them back to Australia which means they’ll end up costing like $152 each and arrive covered in barnacles, and (b) I have enough reading/rowing/’rithmetic to do without them. BUT I’ve been lemming them for ages. Like breakfast and orthopaedic shoes, books by hilarious and inspiring women are non-negotiables in my life. I might stash them in my unironed shirt drawer though, to prevent me from reading them til end of term.
*If Macaulay Culkin were an expert on the enforceability of surrogacy contracts, and not booby-trapping burglars.