Now this is going to be different. Every day from now on I'll be putting a brief extract from the memoir I'm writing about my ten years in Oxford, on my blog. Over the centuries Kings and Princes, Dukes, Earls, British Prime Ministers, Viceroys of India, American Presidents, giants of industry, explorers, poets, writers and scientists have studied for a brilliant future in Oxford’s hallowed halls.
While working in the heart of academia - I was secretary to the Dean of Christ Church, Oxford's most prestigious college - I lived among the locals; an entirely different experience.
At the start of my journey my family rented a 500 year old house in a quaint little village on the outskirts of Oxford. A year passed and we moved on to what we later discovered was a decrepit and dangerous habitation in the upper story of a grand manor - The Great House - in Great Milton. While there, foreign royalty paid a call, the Great House featured in a movie, and traveling Americans were entertained to a plush B&B experience by our aristocratic landlord.
In the fields surrounding Great Milton my daughters and I had an experience that convinced me that ghosts do exist. Our pet canary nearly met his death when a peregrine falcon swooped out of the sky one morning and tried to make off with canary and cage left sunning on a parapet outside our window. An even worse near-tragedy eventually drove us from our Great House apartment.
If this sounds like a story that could interest you, or if you've ever wanted to visit Oxford, check in tomorrow for the start of an interesting read. There will be daily posts as of tomorrow.
Photo copyright Anne Gordon
Posted by Anne Gordon on Saturday, November 9th 2013.