Friday, 26 December 2014

Cambridge Christmas

My connections with Cambridge go back a long way. I first visited as a seven-year-old, travelling for a special holiday with my cousin to visit my auntie, for whom we'd both been bridesmaids the previous year. Apparently the two of us just read our books the whole time and were generally not very entertaining guests. I do remember liking Cambridge a lot, especially the baby turtles for sale in the market. Much to our annoyance, our auntie didn't allow us to buy turtles to take home on the plane.

As a seventeen-year-old, I applied to study at Cambridge, and I was mightily impressed by my visits there for interview. I felt that it was just the sort of place where I'd flourish as an intellectual. Sadly, the interviewers, having heard my clueless answers to quite a range of music history questions, felt that I would flourish better in some other university altogether.

One of my brothers impressed his interviewers somewhat more and spent a heady three years at King's - an excellent place to visit - and further time working in the city. And now my sister and my parents live nearby and I visit frequently.

This year I spent the morning of Christmas Eve, beautifully bright and fresh, wandering through the city with my camera. I joined my parents for lunch on King's Parade, dining at a table next to one of the choral scholars from Kings, who was meeting his family before singing the service of nine lessons and carols. I tried fairly hard not to eavesdrop too much, but the talk was a little bit fascinating...

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