Canals, churches, colleges, and a wander down the river to the apple orchards.
We wound our way along the train tracks zipping past Towns and villages. Our car filled with school girls chatting on their way home for the weekend. Our hands filled with fat bagels and our mouths stuffed with fat bagel bites. We were on our way to Cambridge.
Rachel and Chris were waiting, and we were treated to a top notch tour of all the famous colleges, walking their grounds, admiring the architecture and feeling quite like we had found ourselves at Hogwarts with Harry Potter. We enjoyed a fun evening at Jesus College dining with the students and masters, we got dressed up for the occasion and stood and sat with tradition as the grace was said. We attempted to eat something called Potted shrimps which are a traditional Lancashire dish made with brown shrimp flavoured with nutmeg. The dish consists of brown shrimp in nutmeg-flavoured butter, which has set in a small pot. Cayenne pepper may also be included. – Wikipedia, although a favorite of James Bond writer Ian Flemming we found it rather, er, an acquired taste.
Cambridge, although cold for me, unveiled some lovely weather, and we punted on the cam, poling up and down with much hilarity and various near death experiences both for us and the ducks that cautiously plied the same waters as us. Good thing too as all the Swans in England belong to the queen and none of us fancied a hanging for skewering a swan!
We were afforded delightful views of the colleges and picnicked in our boat before heading back home.
The rest of the weekend consisted of a wonderful walk to some orchards where we had tea while reclining on deck chairs spread out in a field among the trees. The walk wandered over hill and through the woods along the more wild section of the cam river. We spotted little redbreast robins scampering in the black berries and other wildlife included cows, pheasants and on another day a fat water vole treated us to a high speed chase with a moor hen all of which should have been voice-overed by David Attenborough.
The orchard was first planted in 1868, and it has been a tea garden since 1897. It was home to famous English poet Rupert Brooke, who occasionally wrote about the garden in his poems. The Tea Garden has also been visited by authors such as Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath, famous economist John Maynard Keynes, and eminent scientist Stephen Hawking. – source
Later We watched a mighty English game of cricket and ate sandwiches while Chris played. The weather held and Spring really smiled on us, showering us with blue skies, sunlight and plenty of pretty wild flowers.
Chris and Rach whipped up an amazing breakfast fit for kings as well as a super supper and introduced us to the Chelsea buns from Fitzbillies- I had to take their international delivery service card with us and it’s sitting right now on my notice board daring me to make an order!
Cambridge really is a cute little town, and well worth a visit. We were lucky enough to get a “behind the scenes” look, but there’s certainly plenty to see and do, and the parks, gorgeous colleges, churches and cobbled streets are full of stories and history. Just makes you want to bundle your books up with a belt, write a paper at your desk, then enjoy a pint overlooking the cam with your fellow colleagues while you discuss the state of the world. Jolly good, I daresay!