Tuesday Guided Tour

We started our Tuesday afternoon tour with Tony on the 13th of September at 2pm sharp. Our guide pointed out the bronze statue of a man on top of Exeter college and pointed out the idea that the statue is looking down at the martyr’s cross set in a circle of cobbles on Broad Street where the three protestants, Cranmer, Latimer and Ridley were burned at the stake. More about their history in a later post about these Martyrs. The Statue is by Anthony Gormley and installed in 2009. It is about 7feet tall.

 

We walked past the Sheldonian where on plinths between the railings are a series of Emperor heads, representing Roman emperors, or philosophers. Each one has a different beard. Christopher Wren is the architect of the Sheldonian and other buildings in Oxford. These heads were installed when the theater was built and then remodeled in 1868 and again in 1970’s. One of the heads has a wren chiseled in its hair in honor of Christopher Wren.

We walked to the back of the Sheldonian past the Bodlein and past the Bridge of Sighs and on to Radcliffe Camera and into University Church of St. Mary’s.

Some of the information and places we visited with our guide were already known to us but he had some other insider information that we gleaned from him.

After walking through the covered market we exited and went onto Turl Street back toward The High with the All Saint’s tower and steeple ahead of us. Once on High Street we continued on to St. Aldate’s to Christ Church College.

Tom Tower at Christ Church College is another architectural masterpiece by Christopher Wren. This school was founded by Cardinal Wolsey in 1525 with its entrance embellished through the addition of Tom Tower, designed by Wren, in 1680. Great Tom, the bell from Osney Abbey, strikes 101 times at 21:05 each evening: the number represents the 100 students of Henry VIII’s foundation plus an additional place funded later; 21:05 signals the student curfew according to Oxford time, which is five minutes behind Greenwich Mean Time.

We would take a tour of Christ Church College on the following day, Wednesday September 14th.

We walked along the Broad Walk through part of the school campus and on to Merton Grove.

We caught a glimpse of the Christ Church College Cathedral through the iron gate along Merton Grove. This is the only cathedral in Oxford and it’s the smallest cathedral in the U.K. Sadly, the cathedral was closed during the mourning period of the Queen and we were not able to go inside to see it.

Dear and Tony our guide ahead of me and to the right is the tower at Merton college.

We are on Merton Street now and this is the front of Merton College Chapel.

Merton college was founded in 1264 by William de Merton, Lord Chancellor to Henry III, the oldest college in Oxford.

Above, between the statues of Edward I and the founder is a relief of a book, the Lamb of God opposite de Merton kneeling in prayer, flanked by John the Baptist and a unicorn.

J.R.R. Tolkien was an alumni of this college. We tried to get into Merton and Exeter Colleges but both were closed on the days we tried, sadly.

We turned off Merton Street onto Logic Lane.

We were drawn to the Martlets on this crest since Dear’s family crest includes these birds.

A martlet in English heraldry is a mythical bird without feet that never roosts from the moment of its drop-birth until its death fall; martlets are proposed to be continuously on the wing.

Off Logic Lane we are back on the High. We cross the street to Queen’s Lane.

Our guide pointed out The Grand Cafe which we never made it to and another cafe across the street that both claim to be the site of the first coffee house in England.

Onto Queen’s Lane past Queen’s College we turn onto New College Lane.

We see the entrance to New College, one of the colleges we did get into on the following day, and continue on to the end of our tour where we are left off at the Bridge of Sighs at the passageway to The Turf Tavern.

By this time after our 2-1/2 hour tour we are ready to quench our thirst. We say goodbye to Tony and hello to the Turf Tavern. We packed a lot of walking and touring on our first full day in Oxford.

Congratulations if you made it through this long post.

Back to the present, a Happy Thanksgiving Day to our Canadian neighbors and Happy Columbus Day here in the USA. 

The Turf Tavern

The Turf Tavern was on our list of pubs to visit while we were staying in Oxford. On Tuesday September 13th late afternoon our tour guide dropped us off at St. Helen’s Passage to make our way to The Turf.

We got the lay of the land and found our table # so we could order our food at the bar. Fish and Chips for Dear and Steak and Ale Pie for me.

We found by the end of our stay in Oxford that this was the best run pub in town, in our opinion. We enjoyed a meal or an ale at the Turf Six different times while we were in Oxford. The Staff was always cheerful and the servers were efficient and ready to help with any requests.

Since Sticky Toffee Pudding was on the menu we ordered one for us to share for dessert.

To find one of the passages to the Turf find the Bridge of Sighs and then walk under it to a narrow passage way which will take you down another passageway to the property.

Their name drop board shows all the famous people who have been to the Turf. We heard about it in researching the Pubs from the Inspector Morse Series.

The Turf Tavern (or just ‘The Turf’ to it’s locals) is probably the oldest pub in Oxford. The pub was built in the Canditch (the most outside City Wall) as gambling and betting was not permitted inside the walls of the City.

It’s foundations and use as a malthouse can be dated back to 1381, noted by tax imposed by Richard II. Originally called the ‘Spotted Cow’ the name was changed as it’s reputation grew as a venue of gambling. Patrons would frequent The Turf to mee their “Turf-Men’ and although logic might dictate that this was primarily a horse connection, it seems they would take bets on pretty much anything.

Since then it has become a firm favorite for Oxford Dons, students, Tourists from near and afar and many celebrities all searching the streets of Oxford, to find it’s best kept secret.

This is one of the outdoor patios at The Turf. The ancient city wall and the Bell tower at New College you see looming over the patio. I zoomed up with my camera to catch the gargoyles.

After church on Sunday when most of the Pubs and restaurants in town were full with people getting their Sunday Roasts and other goodies we high tailed it to the Turf again and tried to find a seat. At first the only seat we could find was outside in the patio but when our food arrived we noticed an empty seat inside and asked our server if we could switch and he obliged us. It was nice to leave the patio as some of the patrons were lighting up their cigarettes. I enjoyed a delicious Lamb Roast with standard Yorkshire pudding and gravy and roasted veggies. Dear opted for Fish and Chips again.

Our final visit to The Turf was on Friday afternoon the 23rd of September. This was our last full day in Oxford.

A pint and 1/2 a pint. We ordered something way outside of our usual on this day. A Chicken Wings platter with different sauces, etc. We met a Canadian mom and daughter who were visiting relatives in Oxford. The mom was originally from England and went to college in Oxford. A fun conversation.

If you ever find yourself in Oxford follow the passageway to The Turf, quiet and off the beaten track.

Self Guided Tour

Lot of walking again today with a walking tour book I bought for Oxford. Walked into the Jericho area of Oxford and along the canal. Visited a church, a cemetery. We wanted Fish and Chips and found out several pubs were out of fish and chips!  The Lamb and Flag was closed due to refurbishing. The Eagle and Child has been closed for over 2 years now. Both of these pubs have history with Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Today is open day in Oxford for prospective Freshmen and the town was buzzing with parents and students checking out the colleges, and eating all the fish and chips! We finally dropped off our bag of goodies we bought along the way to the apartment and headed to The Turf Tavern again and they had Fish and Chips. This is fast becoming our favorite and go to establishment. Mission accomplished, back to the apartment with our feet up!

Smoky Sunrise

On Saturday morning we walked the Rotary Trail at Sunrise.

The skies reflect the fact that there are fires in our area.

Our conditioning for walking in England is going well. Hopefully we can continue these walks after we return because it’s good for our overall health.

The small white streak against the mountains above is a plane taking off from the small Colville airport.

At the end of our walk is this section of wild flowers blooming. It’s fun to see the poppies.

We walked the trail again on Sunday at dawn and the sun came up above the mountains at the end of our walk.

It was good to be in the House of the Lord on Sunday to declare together with the ‘Body’ that our Lord and Savior is Worthy of all our praise and adoration.

Hope your extended Labor Day weekend is going well and you will have rest from your labors today!

Oxford Archives ~ Doors and Fences

‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.’

This is a post from my archives from 2014.

Oxford Day 6 040Our tour guide in Oxford, July of 2014, said that there are stories about this door being an inspiration to C.S. Lewis on the writing of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe as he was housed behind this door from time to time.

Oxford Day 6 039

Oxford Day 6 041and just to the right of this doorway was this…

Oxford Day 6 042…the lamp post that served as the model in the story.

Good story if it’s true and you can see the inspirations are there. The Chronicles of Narnia are a favorite of mine.

There is so much great history to hear about and see in Oxford. We are already talking about spending at least a couple days in this city the next time we visit Jolly Old England. 

Back to the present. Not just a couple more days but our apartment is booked for 9 days!

Oxford Day 6 113

This fence with “Head” posts is in Oxford England close to the Bodlein and and next to the Sheldonian Theater and Old Ashmolean. Each post has a different head.

Oxford Day 6 080

Last night while Dear and I watched an episode of Inspector Morse they drove on the street next to this fence. I enjoy seeing places we have walked when we watch shows like Morse, Inspector Lewis, or Lord Peter Whimsy series from Dorothy Sayers mysteries.

Oxford Day 6 080

Oxford Day 6 079I didn’t have a lot of time to research why there are heads on each of these posts and information about them isn’t an easy click away.

During our 2022 visit to Oxford we do intend to take in the Sheldonian and a few museums, too. I found this Youtube description and some history of the Sheldonian.

This is my last archive post of Oxford. The days are ticking down for our trip in September.

Early Morning Conditioning

Monday morning at dawn we enjoyed a beautiful sunrise. We decided to head to the Rotary trail again to continue our walking conditioning.

An early morning walk on this trail is a real treat.

We continue to plan and condition for our trip to England in September. Our longest walk in Oxford is only 4.2 miles and those miles involve stops along the way so we are confident we should be good, conditioning on our 3 mile walk without stops on the Rotary trail. While on the trail we listen to sermons and the latest are from 2 Corinthians.

2 Corinthians 3:18 ~  And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

After our walk on Monday morning we came home and got to work, me with mowing, and Dear with finishing his work on the mount for our snowplow.

Snow this winter will be the test on whether this mounting and plow will work well.

We were in the upper 80’s today which was a nice change to our upper 90’s and low 100’s. For the rest of this week we have some Spokane shopping, some granddaughter soccer fun, a dessert get together with our church family and the Northeast Washington Fair.

Are you looking forward to anything this week and weekend?

Trinity College ~ Oxford (Archives)

This is a post from my archives from July of 2014. We traveled by train to Oxford from the Cotswolds leaving our rental car behind which is a very good idea when visiting Oxford. 
Oxford Day 6 094
You can read about the history of Trinity College by clicking here. After our walking tour of Oxford on our 6th day in England Dear and I enjoyed some lunch and then walked about on our own. We visited two more of the University of Oxford Colleges, Trinity and Magdalen. We had to pay a small entrance fee to walk about these colleges.

Oxford Day 6 096

Oxford Day 6 112

Oxford Day 6 110

Oxford Day 6 109

Oxford Day 6 108

Oxford Day 6 100The Chapel was consecrated in 1694 and was hailed by contemporaries as the most magnificent Chapel in the University.  Its dynamic integration of architecture, sculpture and painting is unrivalled amongst surviving ecclesiastical interiors in England.

Oxford Day 6 106

Oxford Day 6 107Deposition of Christ ~ (copy after Andrea del Sarto) by Gaetano Cannicci, 1870.

Oxford Day 6 105

Oxford Day 6 104

Oxford Day 6 101

Oxford Day 6 103

Oxford Day 6 102

We were in Oxford the summer of 1974 briefly on our way to Blenheim Palace with our Singing group before we were married. If my memory serves me correctly it was in Oxford that I purchased the tea set for the Teapot I bought in Canterbury in 1973 on our singing group tour (Royal Albert, Moss Rose). In 2004 on a Literary trip to celebrate our daughter’s graduation from high school we visited Oxford for a day. We parked in a park and ride outside of town and took a bus to the city center and set out to find all the places that C.S. Lewis and Tolkien were known for. We had lunch at the Eagle and Child. We spent some time at Magdalene College and walked the path where Lewis and Tolkien walked. After getting back to our car we ventured off to Wolvercote to try and find the cemetery where Tolkien is buried. With our daughter’s determination we finally did find it and found his gravesite.

Back to July 2022 here in the States. We hope on our journey this September to attend Evensong at Trinity and at Magdalene colleges. Since our time in Oxford will be extended from just several hours to many days we hope to enjoy more leisurely visits to much of Oxford that we didn’t have time to see in 2014. We’ve also been researching churches in the area to attend on the Sunday we are there.

Early Morning Walk

On Sunday we left our country bungalow at 5:45am to drive to the Rotary Trail for an early morning walk. It takes us 10 minutes to get to the parking lot for the trail.

Our path was pleasant and the early morning coolness was good for a walk.

We were treated with an eagle sighting.

We are resolved to get many walking miles in to get conditioned for our trip in September.

It was wonderful to be serenaded by many birds.

This trail borders the golf course but no golfers were out yet. We only met 3 other humans walking this morning.

The Canadian Geese were honking as they got booted from one of the greens.

This walk, 2.9 miles, takes just under an hour to complete so we were home in time to breakfast, shower and head to Sunday School and Church. A wonderful morning!

On the schedule this week is completing the painting of the exterior of the house, have our kids over for a meal, prayer meeting, watering, harvesting our garlic, our weekly mowing/weeding and a trip to Spokane to restock some essentials. What are you up to?

Time Well Spent

Uncle Joshie and Auntie Lolo arrived late on Thursday night for a few days in our neck of the woods. When they arrived after being delayed by roadworks on Highway 395 between Chewelah and Arden we chatted for a while then hit the sack for a full day of fun on Friday.

Auntie Lolo took most of these photos, by the way.  Thank you, Laura!

The 8 of us gathered on Friday morning for breakfast at our country bungalow. Katie and Andrew were stuck on the westside and not with us all for this gathering. After breakfast on Friday, Josh and Dan headed out to golf, Dear worked on some much needed  maintenance on the lawnmower and the girls and JJ met up to walk on the Rotary trail.

It was sunny and hot and humid and we persevered.

After our walk and golfing and naps everyone gathered again at our country bungalow for dinner and fun until bedtime for our grands. For dinner we made Chili Verde which had some great spice depth with sides of rice, veggies, corn and flour tortillas.

The grands showed off their skills on the Big Wheels.

Bedtime came as usual and the grands and their parents headed home for the evening. A full good day for us all.

On Saturday duty called and Josh and Laura headed to our local kids mountain for the day while Dear and I worked on the lawn after a few days of delay because of rain.

I mowed the front and back lawns and Dear weed wacked.

The kids went to the Farmer’s Market, played pickle ball and worked on dinner for all of us.

After our delicious meal on our kids mountain we opted for a walk down the driveway.

 

A great spot for a selfie before we tried to beat the mosquito bites on the way back up the driveway!

On Sunday we all gathered at church and then enjoyed lunch out before Josh and Laura headed to the airport and home. One of the highlights of our church morning was that JJ was willing to go into his Sunday School class with no regrets or resistance so mommy could attend the service in peace. Addy has been willing and happy to attend Sunday School for a while now.

Hope you all had a good weekend. We are grateful for the good times we spent together this weekend.

Pelicans on the Pier

I was happy that these Pelicans were resting instead of flying so I could get my photos.

Back here in N.E. Washington State we have entered a dry warm cycle which means I’ll need to start watering the planters.

Dear has started painting the exterior of our home. When it’s complete I’ll share some before and after photos. Enjoy the last weekend in June!