Downtown

Today John and I ventured out of Headington to centre city. We hadn’t been there in a while (going to work doesn’t count), and I think part of the reason we were hibernating was to avoid the usual crowds that nice weather brings. Considering that today was another British summer day, the people traffic was surprisingly tolerable. And I’m glad we got out, because it led to some nice photo opportunities. John might be made at me for this, but…

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We went to the newly-opened H&M, and that happened. We also went to the Botanic Gardens, which of course were closed, but at least I got a good shot of this punter.

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Punting is one of those activities (I won’t call it a sport) that looks fun, but is only enjoyable if you’re the puntee rather than the punter. Pushing a little boat down a canal with a metal pole is much harder than it looks. And even if you’re the puntee, you’ll either get bored after 10 minutes or feel guilty that someone else is doing all the heavy lifting. I could get into a much more detailed rant about punting, but let’s save that for another blog post.

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This is the Magdalen College tower (I think), and as I took this picture, I thought back to last spring, leaving work early and cycling over the High Street bridge to meet my aunt and uncle who were visiting from Italy. It was when I still liked my first job, and felt excited about the possibilities that Oxford had to offer. I was a tourist that day, showing other tourists around. Somehow, seeing this tower looming before me made me feel lucky to be here, and by “here” I mean more than just the geographical location. Seeing the tower again today, I felt the same spark. As much as I complain (to myself, mostly) about where I currently “am” (in terms of a career, and countless other categories by which we measure success), it feels good to let go of that once in a while in favor of being a tourist again in your current hometown. The city still has much to offer and I intend on soaking it up…on those rare occasions I decide to leave the house.

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