Oxford summer theatrics


in Oxford

Amidst the drilling and pounding in Wadham today, I realized that Oxford University during the summer is much like a theatre between shows. The set undergoes modification and repair; the wiring and lighting gets tweaked and redone; and nearly everyone present is out of character. As such, it is unusually interesting for the kind of person who likes to learn how magic tricks are done, and unusually challenging for those who would rather not know.

Luckily, I fall within the first grouping. I suppose it is somewhat ironic that the great flood of tourists see the colleges while they are being sandblasted and re-paved, the quads while their grass is dying from the ban on lawn watering, and the gardens while they are kitted out as theatres for summer productions of Shakespeare and Wilde.

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Lee August 15, 2006 at 7:22 pm

That explains why Oxford is so full of the kind of annoying people you get in Saturday night audiences in the West End – loud American tourists in particular. Though Oxford is an interesting barometer of international affluence. This year, the number of Spaniards is quite astounding (they go around in packs of 100 – no exaggeration) and the number of Chinese continues to rise, outpacing the number of Japanese significantly.

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