Christ’s College Cambridge

Coming down from my room in Christ’s College. Light rain on neat green table cloth lawns. Stripes laid down with precision. My father used to mend the mowers that cut these lawns. I see him standing in a doorway as if long ago, frowning over the lay of the pile as if still alive. The bells of Great St Mary’s gently reflecting from oatmeal coloured walls. Sandstone blocks of history, the observers of learning. Darwin and Milton walked these paths, out to the Fellow’s garden, wide trimmed healthy bright green in the morning sunshine. Sharp and low slivers of light in the face like a dagger, silver and flashing through the branches of the oak above.

The old black street lamps with their hollow ring of light in the early morning mist but now barely visible as the sun throws it’s weight across the lawn. Conifers and holly with their apple green berries of autumn bordering the curving path towards the quad. Through the arch and past the grand dining hall where noise is collected on plates by young hopefulls and removed to bins across the corridor by local youths.

The chapel to the far right, silent, dark, and housing that smell of all churches, sits waiting to be noticed, but things have changed.  We walk around the quad, many textures and surfaces, each with its own story. The Master’s Lodge, crest above the door and climbers searching through the stonework for somewhere to grip and cherish this holy building.

Rain lighter now, Chinese tourists peering from the barrier that separates history from reality by the porter’s lodge at the entrance gate. They look, they photograph and talk, for once, in respectful whispers, as they share a sense of vulnerability in the presence of something much greater than they.

Home is where the heart is – find out where your heart takes you in those moments of reverie and then let it lead you there.

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