Tuesday, March 1, 2016

my daily commute

Today, friends, I shall give you a virtual walking tour of my favorite route from The Vines into downtown Oxford. This is a route that I walk or bike most days, and I always enjoy the commute. One super sunny and clear Friday I decided to walk and take lots of photos. 

This is Pullens Lane, the lane that goes by the Vines. There are usually a handful of people walking along it going to and from their various activities. 

This postbox (collections starting at 9 am and ending at 4 pm Monday-Friday) is only a couple hundred yards away from The Vines, and it is quite handy to mail postcards from.

I walk down Harberton Mead, which is a windy road down the hill that opens into the driveways of many grand houses. Trees are blossoming here, blissfully unaware that to begin blossoming in the middle of January is a thing not to be done. 

I bike past a large open field with a church on the other side. 

Daffodils also missed the "don't blossom until March" memo. There are cheerful daffodils all over the city, in parks, pots, and window-boxes.

Volkswagen campers make me think of childhood camping in Montreat. :)

This is Harberton way, a walking/bike path through the water meadows. Sometimes, if it rains enough, it floods:

This water doesn't look all that deep, but for about 20 yards it was over my ankles. Thankfully, my leather boots are also waterproof. 

Once I get into town, the English Faculty Building (which has the English Faculty Library and lecture rooms), is under five minutes' walk from the end of Harberton way. The view from the EFL is lovely. That's Holywell church, which has a lovely, albeit somewhat eerie cemetery.

Unfortunately, the EFL itself is rather hideous. It's a testimony to the fact that even Oxford could not escape from 60s architecture.

Thankfully, however, most buildings are appropriately charming.

This is Holywell Street, just down the road from the EFL.

New College is on Holywell Street. "New" meaning founded in 1379.

The Alternative Tuck Shop is a dear little sandwich and pastry shop that is a favorite with students. The line is out the door during lunch time, and they handle the lunch rush quite well. They make all sorts of sandwiches to order, and you can get them grilled or on ciabatta or wraps. The pastries also look delectable. There's a point to the name, too. 

This is the Tuck Shop. On the same road, it's basically a kiosk where you can buy postcards, tabloids, candy bars and junk food. So you can go to the Tuck Shop or The Alternative Tuck Shop. I'll take the Alternative Tuck Shop anyday. In fact, I might grab lunch there tomorrow. 

The end of Holywell Street is the end of my journey. I can either go into the Bodleian Library and hit the books or pop down High Street to pop into Blackwell's bookshop, which has a delightful cafe on the second story. Or simply wander through town, enjoying the unique atmosphere that is Oxford.


  1. How delightful! What a beautiful commute.

    Love, Mom

  2. thank you for sharing your walk/ride with us.
    really charming and you are enjoying.
    so happy for you, kate.