From the land between Wake and Dream. (sea_thoughts) wrote,
From the land between Wake and Dream.

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Moffat and Oxford

Thanks for the well wishes. :) I managed to go back to work last Friday and was well enough to attend the Radio Times interview with Steven Moffat on Sunday. Moff was on good form, very funny and sarcastic. He didn't say much about the upcoming 50th anniversary special or the new Sherlock episodes (of course) but he did refute the silly idea that they filmed in America to get American viewers. He said that in his view Americans were much smarter than that: if they wanted to see America, all they had to do was go outside or switch on their televisions, they wanted to watch Doctor Who because it was quintessentially British, and that the biggest reason for shooting in America was that it was a different, bigger backdrop for the Doctor. Here's some trivia: they originally intended to shoot the whole two-parter in Florida, because that's where NASA is located. However, when they arrived, it looked so much like Cardiff that he and Caroline decided "we have to find something that's SO American, nobody can possibly doubt that they're in America!" and that is why Monument Valley happened. XD He also rubbished the claims that Peter Capaldi was "too old" to be popular with kids as the Doctor, stating that ALL adults are the same age to children, that is, ancient. He spoke of how he was a teacher at 24 and his pupils thought he was as old as the dinosaurs!

Yesterday I went to Oxford for the third time in my life, but the first time driving. It's such an easy drive, only just over an hour, along the beautiful A40 aka the Golden Valley Road. The signs for the Park and Ride are easy to follow, although the buses are supposed to be every 10 minutes and when I arrived, there was a crowd of people who'd been waiting for 30 minutes! Fortunately a bus turned up quite soon after I'd arrived, although it took a while for everyone to get on. Still, we were finally on our way and didn't hit much traffic driving into Oxford, let alone traffic lights (wish it were as easy to get into Cheltenham).

I met jo_blogs at the bus station and we sauntered along to the Bodleian Library, which was having a Magical Books exhibition. The exhibition was about the idea of magic in English literature and where it had come from, so you had original alchemical texts, a 16th-century magician's sigil stone, and medieval manuscripts, along with drafts from Susan Cooper, Alan Garner and C.S. Lewis, as well as the six signs from The Dark Is Rising sequence which were made for Cooper by her husband, as well as the annotated edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, with J.K. Rowling's notes and illustrations. It was open to her illustration of Snape, with the caption "Snape brooding on the unfairness of the world"! XD Very apt!

I was struck once again by Oxford's beauty, with its Cotswold stone and graceful buildings, it's always graceful and striking, even in the rain. I wanted to check out this nice little French bistro in Jericho (yes, there's really a part of Oxford called Jericho) called Pierre Victoire, but when Jo and I got there, the kitchen had closed! There was no note on the door, the sign wasn't turned to 'Closed', and the restaurant was full of customers, all happily chatting with no sign of trouble. We had to leave and go to the Café Rouge next door. The meal wasn't bad, apart from them getting Jo's omelette filling wrong, but I am determined to go back to Pierre Victoire the next time I'm in Oxford and actually sample the food. At least we were able to go to the George & Davis ice cream parlour opposite. I had some Oxford Blue ice cream (blueberries and cream) with Greek Yoghurt and Honey. I've been to the bigger G&D on St Aldate's Street but I think I like this one better, even though it's smaller, it seemed calmer and quieter than the other one.

We wandered back into town, intending to visit the Divinity School (which had been closed to the public for matriculation) but then the heavens opened. We hurried down the street, seeking shelter, and I spotted an unusual sign on a side street. We dived into The Nosebag and went up some stairs to find a cosy, comfortable little café. We only had tea there, but the menu had a lot of choice, including some great vegetarian options, so it would be fun to go back.

After the tea, Jo went back to the bus station and I went back to the P&R car park, then drove home. I thnk I ran a red light, which was silly, but I honestly thought I could get past before the light turned red. I don't think there is a camera on that crossing though, so I might get away with it. We'll see!
Tags: friends, oxford, real life, travelling
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