Sunday, March 18, 2012

Free Day in Oxford!

This is my second free day since I got to Betel (my first one was in Madrid in December). Ah! How I valued and needed a chance to just be away for the day.

(This doesn't have anything to do with my trip...we pass this pub every time we do our food donations run. Does this strike anyone else as funny, or is it just me?)  

Sheep in a field in Birmingham

Amanda and I in front of the pub where C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien used to meet every Tuesday with their group called the "Inklings"

There are a lot of bicycles in Oxford!

A typical street in the city center

Me in front of a door to some famous place (forgot which one now...oops)

Me in front of the BEST PLACE EVER!! The Bodleian Library, which claims to have every book ever published. You have to pay to go in for a tour, so we didn't, but just being that close to all those books was a happy place to be. (In addition to their very large building here, they have miles of underground storage.)

Courtyard in the Bodleian Library

They had a glass case displaying some of Haydn's music. Is this the perfect song for me, or what? ("The Knitting Girl")

Lovely street view

Never in America would you have the entrance to a little Panini shop be such an elaborate archway! 

Lucy and I in front of Christchurch (Lucy was our gracious hostess and tour guide--she was the best! You will probably remember her from my time in Betel in Madrid. She was volunteering there at the same time as me, but she was from Oxford and invited us to come visit.)

View from inside the gate at Christchurch

Garden at Christchurch

Sign on the wall of the "Eagle and Child" pub, where C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and others met regularly

Lucy and me in the Eagle and Child

My lunch--Chicken and mushroom pie with mashed potatoes and roasted vegetables. The puff pastry on top of the pie was unlike anything I had ever tasted. Yum!

The grounds at Blenheim Palace, birthplace of Winston Churchill

Amanda and me in front of Blenheim Palace. You had to pay 11.50 (in pounds) just to see the grounds, and 20 pounds to see the inside of the building. That would be about $15.75 and $30, respectively. We didn't have much daylight left, so we just saw the grounds. Next time I want to see inside! Check out the website for just a taste of how amazing it is inside:

Panoramic view of Blenheim palace from the front gates

So in exploring the grounds, we had great fun, especially me, because I decided to give into my monkey-like impulses....

Then we found another amazing tree which all of us just had to explore.

Lucy and Amanda 

Amanda inside the tree

Me up on top

Me being crazy and hanging upside down

After exploring Blenheim's beauties, we drove through the picturesque town of Woodstock, just outside of the palace, and the went back to Lucy's family's home for dinner. It was a wonderful, jolly meal with lots of banter and laughter and an amazing dish called "Beef King David." Lucy's family is wonderful and it was a treat to get to meet them. 

Then Amanda and I headed back to Birmingham on the train, fresh and ready for another stint at being in Betel. Yay for free days! But even more YAY for participating in God's work in this ministry!!


  1. And "Lucy" herself showed you the place where the Inklings met - how appropriate : )

  2. I love all the pictures!!!

  3. What an awesome place. God is definitely blessing you for the good work you are accomplishing.


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