Last days in Cambridge

I’m posting this from a laptop charging station in the Minneapolis airport. Since I got up at 5 this morning in Cambridge, it’s already been a very long day and it’s only 3:45 pm (right now) in Salt Lake City. Just got to power through another few hours in the airport, a few more hours on a plane, and then I’ll be home in SLC! I thought I’d take advantage of some of my 45 minutes of free airport wifi to do something to engage my brain a little bit and write up this little life update. I pretty much had my normal work routine for the rest of last week, and I spent the weekend doing a bit of rowing, a bit of running, a bit of tourism, and a lot of packing! Once again, I’ll let the pictures do most of the talking.

Some gorgeous flowers at Churchill, on my way to my last formal on Friday.
Some gorgeous flowers at Churchill, on my way to my last formal on Friday.
Downtown Cambridge was super crowded on Saturday, thanks to graduation. This is the tip of the iceberg.
Downtown Cambridge was super crowded on Saturday, thanks to graduation. This is the tip of the iceberg.
The worst crowds were near King's and the Senate House. Between graduation and the fact that it was a completely beautiful day, the streets were packed with tourists, students, and families.
The worst crowds were near King’s and the Senate House. Between graduation and the fact that it was a completely beautiful day, the streets were packed with tourists, students, and families.

Of course I picked graduation as my day to be down in the middle of Cambridge, trying to do tourist things and buy Cambridge swag. It’s amazing all the shops weren’t sold out of everything.

Graduates mingle on the Senate House lawn.
Graduates mingle on the Senate House lawn.
Soon-to-be graduates queue outside the Senate House in anticipation of receiving their degrees.
Soon-to-be graduates queue outside the Senate House in anticipation of receiving their degrees.
The front  court of King's College. Getting in the front door for free (the tourists have to buy tickets across the street and then walk all the way around to the back) was a pretty sweet feeling.
The front court of King’s College. Getting in the front door for free (the tourists have to buy tickets across the street and then walk all the way around to the back) was a pretty sweet feeling.
I decided to skip the inside of the chapel, since I saw it already with Elise (and the line was ridiculous).
I decided to skip the inside of the chapel, since I saw it already with Elise (and the line was ridiculous).
Student rooms at King's. I'm kind of jealous.
Student rooms at King’s. I’m kind of jealous.
Lots of punters out and about.
Lots of punters out and about.
Got pretty lucky with the weather on the weekend!
Got pretty lucky with the weather on the weekend!
Inside St. John's College (also known as
Inside St. John’s College (also known as “the other big fancy one”).
More impressive views of St. John's.
More impressive views of St. John’s.
Tourists (like me) check out the
Tourists (like me) check out the “Bridge of Sighs,” which connects two parts of St. John’s across the Cam.
Here's the outside (it's nicer than Oxford's, I think, and Venice's as well.).
Here’s the outside (it’s prettier than Oxford‘s, I think, and Venice‘s as well).
More majestic St. John's.
More majestic St. John’s.
Big impressive entrance to...something.
Big impressive entrance to…something at St. John’s.
View from Magdalene Bridge.
View from Magdalene Bridge.

I thought I wouldn’t have time to do anything but pack on Sunday, and I was mostly right…but I still managed to fit in baking another batch of chocolate hobnobs for my house and going for a nice run out Madingley Road and back through Coton, along the paths I first ran in Cambridge. I managed to avoid the nettles this time around, and although most of the wild blackberries (or “brambles”) were still green or flowering, I found a few delicious fruits on my way back to the house.

First blackberries are just starting to come in. Nice way to come full circle with my time in Cambridge.
First blackberries are just starting to come in. Nice way to come full circle with my time in Cambridge.

I’ve got mixed feelings about leaving Cambridge, and “dead tired in an airport” may not be the best time and place for me to adequately articulate them. It was a year (well, 10 months) of ups and downs, and there are definitely things I feel I missed out on among all the wonderful opportunities. I’m really sad to leave all the awesome people I met, especially at Churchill, as well as research that I just felt I was really taking ownership of and that is going in a really interesting direction. At the same time, I’m excited that I get to spend a few weeks relaxing at home with my family, and to start up a new chapter of my life at Harvard. Going to Cambridge was an incredible privilege, and though it wasn’t perfect, I’d definitely do it again.

I’m about to get kicked off the wifi, so I’d better post this. Time to wander around the airport for a few hours. 🙂

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