|Oxford is a university town, with 20,000 students and hundreds of lecturers and tutors living there. As well, there are the tourists and the rest of the residents, most of whom either work in the university or in the tourism industry. It makes for an interesting mix of shops with everything from tailors making dinner suits to souvenir shops, shops selling books old and new, dozens of cafes, many expensive shoe shops, every type of jewelry and quite a collection of places dealing in organic / local food, like the organic butcher at left.|
| I had lunch amongst a whole lawnful of graves (right) at an excellent and very busy cafe serving seasonal, vegetarian, organic meals, called 'Vaults'. I took this photo early in the day but by lunchtime it was full. |
Before lunch I went on a tour of the university colleges, which date from the 12th century. The most astonishing thing to me was the quality and huge expanses of immaculate lawns which are not allowed to be walked on by the students or they are fined! I would love to use those lawn areas to grow vegetables!
This little bilby dates from the 18th century and is a feature on one of the walls of a college renowned for zoology.
This is the dining room of Exeter College where Alex will be living from next month.
Today there was a French market at Gloucester Green, selling all sorts of produce from these enormous tomatoes to bundles of garlic and shallots (below, right) as well as bowls of olives and stalls full of pastries.
I bought some olives for tomorrow's picnic with the bloggers. I am really looking forward to the get together and to meeting Patrick, Steph and all the bloggers. Then I really will have something to write about!