August 21, 2007

Wonderland and more!

Pinch me… will u, for I was in the midst of a place where all literate people across the world, dream to be. THE OXFORD UNIVERSITY… Spellbound and Awestruck I was…by not only its beauty, but also due to the fact that I was finally there. Pawan and Neha were in the same mode – while they told me some of the interesting facts.

Speaking about facts; it was right here in Oxfordshire that the Adventures of Alice in Wonderland originated. The journey began one afternoon in July 1862 at Folly Bridge, Oxford, one of the most famous alumni of Christ Church college – the mathematician Charles Dodgson, known to most people as Lewis Carroll, took a girl called Alice Liddell and her two sisters (daughters of the then Dean) on a rowing picnic, up the River Thames to the village of Godtsow.
During that journey, he told them the tale of a girl called Alice who goes looking for an adventure. 10 year-old Alice, loved the story so much so, that she him to write it down. This resulted in the epic tales of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland; first published in 1865 under the pen name Lewis Carroll and have gone on to be a favourite with generations throughout the globe.

Coming back to reality, Christ Church is the largest of the Oxford University colleges. Its grandeur owes much to the pride of one man, its founder, Cardinal Thomas Woolsey. Christ Church College boasts of a cathedral inside – a unique thing. The architecture is remarkable…People from all over the world come to see the essence of this much talked about institution, but one wonders what captures the interest of the teenagers and younger children in the college premises. In ‘Harry Potter’ lies the answer. Wondering what Harry Potter has to do with Oxford…? Well… While watching Harry Potter movies, ever been awestruck with the Hogwart’s dining room which roomed more than a hundred students, staff and of course not to forget the Ghosts… of legends, while Prof Dumbledor gave most of his speeches. Well Oxford it was… where its been shot.

That’s not all – Oxford University comprises of 39 colleges in all and every college has its own USP – Right from top politicians to businessmen all have had their roots here. Oxford boasts of having taught Bill Clinton, Oscar Wilde (Magdalen College), Albert Eiensten (Christ Church College) and the list goes on including over 14 former Prime Ministers of UK. Our very own Indira Gandhi studied here at the Somerville College.

The Turf Tavern age old Pub– is a must see, It is located down a narrow winding alley between Holywell Street and New College Lane, close to the old city wall, which can still be seen here where the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Bill Clinton and the now Crown Prince of Japan have spent leisure time.Just behind the pub – is the house of Edmund Halley – a geometry professor who spotted the Halley’s Comet.

Phew! After a 3 hour literate tour – it was time for some punting - the best thing to do in Oxford apart from spending time at the university. A 20 pound boat ride was in order - A 30 minute guided tour with some complimentary Pepsi or some English wine for the more intoxicatingly inclined on board was the best way to end this trip.


Dinesh Akula said...

dont worry i am fine and i am in london right now....

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