I’ve been to Oxford for a couple of days this week, a favourite place of mine. We did a little clothes shopping, much looking at shoes, many meanders around the city, and re visits to our favourite places. The Botanic Gardens is one such place; I’ve seen it twice in early spring so it was good to visit in late summer, to see some of the empty beds full and verdant. I love it there any time of year; here are some images.
The gardens are not huge, just the right size in my opinion, and the River Cherwell runs along side them. If you are of a slightly evil nature, which of course I’m not, there is a certain amount of entertainment to be gained from watching people attempting to punt the rather oversize craft…
At this time of year you can marvel at the enormous Victoria amazonica lilies, in the Lily House. I think they can grow bigger, but the largest here was about 1.5 m across.
Naturally I took many images, well, nearly 500, not just of the Botanical Gardens. Don’t panic, they’re not all on my blog, but they will serve as reference material for future work. This is as close as I get to a jungle, I’m sort of the Birmingham version of Le Douanier Rousseau, but not famous, or a customs officer.
I love an old water butt.
A gateway at the gardens and some views of the vaulted ceiling in the tea rooms at St. Mary the Virgin, one of the best places for a tea break. It features in Lewis frequently. Yes, I do watch Lewis and shout ‘I’ve been there!’ Sad but true.
About 25 years ago I went to the Pitt Rivers Museum, and at that time, as it was a day trip, just walked through the Natural History Museum. This time, although I was out to convince my friend of the wonders of the Pitt Rivers [she agreed] I was more interested in the Natural History Museum. It is absolutely glorious, sort of old fashioned, ie lots and lots to look at and no interaction stuff, which can be overdone, as they have admitted at the Natural History Museum in London, but also with funky displays and much wit. I seriously need to live in Oxford, I could go there every week; 3 hours there only chipped at its surface.
One of the elephant skeletons on display. Many of the animal exhibits were very old, and I am aware that they were collected in a way which these days we would not find particularly comfortable or appropriate.
One of the many display cases.
And some details of some of the displays.
A beautiful echinoderm, one of the many carved capitals, and a fossil nautilus shell that had a fascinating brocade like pattern on its surface.
And here is a view of the Pitt Rivers Museum, from one of its two galleries. There are other exhibition areas too, as it’s had quite a re vamp since my last visit. You could spend thousands of hours there and still find things you hadn’t seen on each visit.
Walking to the station to come home, a rainbow. We had one sunny day, and one wet one, which is quite a result for an English summer break.