Monday, June 5, 2017

Cambridge Part 2

Thursday I took a different group of students to Cambridge for a walking tour and punting tour. This group is studying the British influence on residential education, so our focus of the tours was to learn more about the colleges and we went inside more of the grounds than the previous visit.

 I mentioned a bit about Trinity College in my previous Cambridge post and here is a close-up on Henry VIII from the front entrance. In his right hand there used to be a sceptre, but many years ago  it was replaced with a wooden chair leg as a prank - which still remains in his hand to this day.
 We entered the college grounds this time and were able to view the inner courtyard. Cambridge is full of traditions that are still upheld, including only allowing Fellows of the colleges and their guests to walk on the grass. As visitors, it was forbidden for us to step foot on it off the path.
 There were many statues of famous alumni in the chapel building.
 Most famous is Isaac Newton.

We also toured the inside of King's College chapel, which took almost 70 years to build from the mid 15th to early 16th centuries. It features beautiful stained glass windows, many Tudor family emblems, and an intricate ceiling.

 During WWII, Cambridge was bombed by the Germans and the stained glass panels were all carefully removed so that they could be protected. It took 7 years to replace them all back in their proper spots.

 This clock it outside Corpus Christi College, which was unveiled to the public in 2008 by Stephen Hawking. The creature at the top is a "Chronophage", which means "time eater" from the Greek chronos and ephagon.  You can watch it in motion here.
On our punting tour we learned that this door was the source of many pranks for the students of St. John's College. Supposedly, shortly after new freshmen would arrive and before they learned their way around the buildings, older students would rearrange the fire exit signs to lead to this door, then pull the fire alarm to watch the newbies rush out and plop into the river.

After our return to London and bidding the students a goodnight, I headed back to Kentish Town and treated myself to a pizza from Franco Manca, a local sourdough pizza chain.
As much as I love Via 313, it was nice to enjoy some traditional Italian pizza - complete with chili infused olive oil like what you get in Italy.

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