Oxford is first and foremost a student town. It beams with a (sometimes not so) quiet, omnipresent aura of academic quality, and unfaltering (self-)importance. Radcliffe Camera, probably the most widely known building in Oxford, certainly has an attraction that goes beyond being a tourist magnet. Once home to the Science Library, it now houses additional reading rooms of the Bodleian Library, one of the many in town. Despite recent rumours of Oxford university’s somewhat colonial attitude and “laddish” subculture, it remains an icon of classical education. It also reminds me of Dorothy L. Sayers’s words: “It’s later than you think. But it’s never too late.” These words are now engraved into Harris Manchester College’s clock tower, in recognition of the college’s growing population of mature students. Its bells also toll at two minutes past the hour, proving there is hope for me yet.
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