In highschool, my dream university was Oxford, without good reason other than its prestige. I had seriously contemplated applying to Oxford before nanotechnology at Waterloo won me over…whaaaa? Perhaps the whole “going to Oxford” thought was just a constant mindset in a clueless highschool student (who was doing relatively well academically and regarded as “smart”) who thought she’d aim for the best of the best. Why I chose Waterloo (with no regrets)…is a long story for a sunnier day.
Having been in the UK for almost 3/4 of a year, I still haven’t paid a visit to my ex-dream school. Instead I visited its biggest rival – yep, Cambridge. Perhaps I really should have considered Cambridge in the first place since it’s much more renowned for science and engineering while Oxford is for the politically and humanities-oriented minds. Anyway, the reason why I went to Cambridge was simple – it was convenient. From Stansted airport, at least, which was where I arrived from Glasgow. If I wanted to get to Oxford, I’d first have to head to central London and take a train from there, which would take way longer than if I just went to Cambridge from Stansted in a less-than-one-hour train ride. Oxford, I’ll get to you eventually.
Cambridge felt more like a tourist attraction than an academic institution, but let’s be fair – I was only there for a day and a half. To visit the various famous colleges, there’s an entrance fee to be paid – £8 for King’s College, £7.50 for St John’s College, £3 for Queens College, £2 for Trinity College, etc. I understand the high entrance fee for King’s College as it is the most well-known landmark of Cambridge, but apparently the entrance fee for St John spiked because some scenes from the movie “The Theory of Everything” were filmed there. Great. And that was the one I wanted to see. So let’s go inside for a quick look.
The entire reason why I wanted to visit St John’s College and chose it out of the many college with entrance fees was to see the “Bridge of Sighs”, which I’ll get to later. Only the name itself got me curious and costed me £7.50. Oh well. Here’s a frontal view of the New Court at St. John’s College, a photo made possible by my handy-dandy phone which has a panoramic mode (I still suck at taking panoramic photos though). Sorry, Mr.Nikon, you lose this time.
Inside the chapel at St John’s College. In truth, the King’s College Chapel is probably grander and more impressive but I can’t say – I didn’t pay the fee to access King’s College.
Another court in St John’s – I lost track of the names of the courts. First Court? Second Court? Third Court? No idea.
And now, what we’ve been waiting for since the beginning – the Bridge of Sighs. I was actually quite disappointed that there was construction going on at the bridge 😦 So I wanted to see what the Bridge of Sighs was all about because its name just sounded so melancholic and depressing. The original Bridge of Sighs is found in Venice, Italy, and it is said that the “sighs” are those of students going into exams. Sounds about right in a place like Cambridge.
This building covered in green (and other colours, but mostly green) foliage was my favourite in St John’s. Imagine waking up, looking out the window and being greeted by the scent of green leaves every morning. Then again, if you look at it from another point of view, this could look more like a prison than anything else…ha!
New Court from another angle, just before we left St John’s and said goodbye to Cambridge. Of course my visit to Cambridge was not limited to only St John’s College, and I really hope I will have time to write another entry on Cambridge but as you are probably aware, blogging time has decreased significantly lately and might stay this way for the next while 😦 I will try my best to keep this blog alive though, so worry not! Meanwhile, why not head over to Picture Worthy or The Food Gallery for a stroll? 🙂