Things I Will Miss About Oxford

My experience of Oxford is best summed up by my friend Johannes’ catchphrase (uttered with a sigh of contentment and A-Ok finger sign): “Ah, happy days!”

Arriving in Oxford, my expectations were ‘lofty’ at best, ‘borderline delusional’ at worst (my preparation involved watching Brideshead Revisited, Harry Potter and every collegiate movie/series I could get my hands on). And yet, appraising this place 10 months later, I feel somewhat vindicated. For me, the romance of Oxford has been real.

In less than a fortnight I will leave this beautiful place for good. I will desperately miss:

My friends

Ox51  Ox50

Having a tribe drawn from all over the world (Germany, Sweden, Canada, the US, France, South Africa, Hong Kong, the UK…), feeling like Anne Shirley forever waxing lyrical about kindred spirits and bosom friends.

Rowing

Ox45  Ox49

Being part of a boat club with a 156 year history, watching the sun rise on the Isis (almost always worth braving the dark and cold for), the carnivalesque atmosphere of the Torpids and Summer VIIIs ‘bumps racing’ regattas.

Endless sandstone and beautiful buildings

Oxford47  Ox3

Passing under the Bridge of Sighs each day, the afternoon sun catching on the Rad Cam, gazing out over the city from the Varsity rooftop terrace and Magdalen tower.

Spending time in the colleges

 10July6 Ox29 10July11

Enjoying the secluded gardens, grand halls and cozy MCRs. The endless stream of garden parties, exchange dinners, and wine and cheese events. Calling Magdalen home, as alumni like Oscar Wilde and CS Lewis would have done.

Post-prandial MCR hang-outs

Ox6  Ox26

Lunching at the OKB terrace or on the New Building lawns, then retreating to our Central Perk/70s Show basement of an MCR (for the coffee machine, bottomless biscuit jar and to waste while away hours).

Formal halls, banquets and balls

Ox10  10July13Ox11  11July16

Gussying up for an evening of multiple courses, obligatory port and second desserts in a beautiful setting. The extravagance of the May and June balls.

Seasonal changes

Ox42  Ox39 Ox18  2June4 Ox34  10July19

Witnessing autumn slide into bitterly cold winter, the unfurling of snowdrops and cherry blossoms, the brief window of Magdalen fritillaria, then the explosion of spring verdancy and flowers. Trinity term heralding the start of punting, croquet and Pimm’s.

Constant entertainment

Ox12  Ox8

Never being short of something to do: concerts at the Sheldonian, talks and seminars, improv comedy at the Wheatsheaf.

My courses

Ox2  Ox7

Challenging tutorials, interesting course material, being pushed by brilliant professors and peers.

Weird traditions

Ox53  Ox24

Being bemused and amused by subfusc, matriculation, exam carnations and trashing, May morning, and the ‘Oxford way’ of doing things.

Revelling in the rich history of this beautiful institution, and having my own place in it.

2 thoughts on “Things I Will Miss About Oxford

  1. Could things have been any more perfect?! I’m so glad you wrote this blog so we could get a feel for all these amazing experiences
    Cannot wait to see you in person soon though! xx

    Liked by 1 person

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