Day 1 - Cambridge
11 July 2007 - Wednesday
Our train arrived in Cambridge. We figured out how to call Jen
on the payphone, and then took a taxi to where we were staying,
the Cam Guest House.
Jen was waiting for us when we arrived! She had lots to show us,
and since our plane was late we had to hurry.
Cambridge is a lovely city. Southern England reminds me a lot
of northern Germany, where I spent 3 weeks as an exchange student
back in 1994. It was neat having traffic lights that go red+yellow
before going green, having the windows that open three-ways,
down comforters instead of sheets, and always being worried you are going
to get run down by a bicycle while walking on the sidewalk.
The thing that took me the longest to get used to was the cars driving on
the opposite side of the street; I nearly got run over every time I crossed
a road because I'd look the wrong way before crossing.
On our way to Jen's flat we walked along the Cam river. Here
you can see a barge house-boat in the foreground and some crew-team
boat houses in the background:
We walked across the Midsummer Common:
For historical reasons cows live on the green:
And because of this there are cattle gratings at the entrances:
I was amused by this sign, which I choose to interpret to say
"No sledge-hammering bicyclists except Jesus":
In town we walked by the market:
And continued on where we got pasties (our first British food).
They weren't bad.
Nearby was the Corn Exchange, which sounds funny to American ears but
each town tends to have one. It's where villagers exchanged
grains in the 19th century.:
There were streets that had actual gutters, not their pale American
imitations. In the background you can see a
Belisha Beacon which is a pedestrian crossing with flashing orange
lights (I need to start posting actual scenery pictures
rather than random stuff like this or Kristina is going to get annoyed):
On to part 2 of our first day in Cambridge