Bucket List Check #13 - A Return To Oxford England
Having done a half loop around the western part of Scotland, Mike and I made our way from Inverness back to Glasgow, where we planned to take the evening Caledonia Sleeper Train from Glasgow to London. Unfortunately, we found out at the Glasgow train station that there were mechanical problems with our train, and they offered us instead a bus, to take overnight. Uhhh....no thanks.
So we ended up staying overnight at a nice hotel right in Glasgow Central Station, and took a Virgin train the next morning. Travelling first class on the Virgin train was quite nice, as stewards were constantly coming up and down the aisles offering snacks. Wifi was spotty, but Mike was able to work, while I focused on binge watching Season 4 of Outlander.
We arrived at Euston train station in London and took a cab to get to our rental car. Our plan was to head out 51 miles northwest, towards Oxford.
I had studied at Trinity College in Oxford many years ago, as part of a summer program through my alma mater, Georgetown University. Interestingly enough, Oxford University consists of 39 colleges, of which Trinity College is one of them.
Founded in 1555 by Sir Thomas Pope, the college is home to 400 students and has beautiful gardens, a wonderful dining hall and on-campus living quarters. The College (during the time I stayed) even had it own Pub, where you could get a pint and play darts.
They do charge a few pounds for admission to most of the colleges, Trinity College included.
Standing in front of the old apartments where I stayed during college. I was on the second floor.
Entrance to the Pub (if it is still there...which I assume it is!)
The old dining hall, where they would have twice daily tea service, when I was a student there, back in 1996. Looks a bit like Hogwarts...
The old library I used to study in. Only students were allowed to enter. Maybe I should have brought my old ID!
We continued on, and I wanted to show Mike the Covered Market, which is right in city center. The city had developed quite a bit, with a lot more restaurant options. Back in the mid 1990's we used to go to the Covered Market for lunch because you could grab an amazingly good sandwich there pretty quickly.
I took this photo of this tree found near city center of Oxford, which I thought was interesting. I wonder how old this tree must be...
Moving on, I had plans to take Mike punting, which is basically a small boat that you push around with a giant stick. Similar to the gondolas in Venice... just without singing. I had done this with a group of friends and it was a fun, memorable time! If you are in Oxford during the summertime, I highly recommend, if the weather cooperates.
Photo Credit: Hark1karan.com
Sadly, the weather was not cooperating with us and it was, in usual British fashion - cold and rainy. So we set aside our plans to punt that day, and instead opted to eat an early dinner at The Trout Inn.
Panoramic view of The Trout Inn, from the nice patio. Perfect in the summer!
Set by the river (the same river where you go punting), the Trout Inn used to be a hole in the wall pub. Now, it looks like it has been completely renovated into a nice restaurant and pub. I was delighted to see that they still had peacocks, who wander around the grounds and occasionally, still tried to sneak in...
Here you can feast on delicious burgers, or the old English standby, fish and chips, and delight in the many English brews.