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Cambridge Photo Diary

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1oam…

Our train is booked for 10.30am yet at 10am I find myself still faffing about  under a sea of clothes trying to decide what to wear (story of my life). As the minutes tick by I seem to be getting more and more irate with myself. I want to wear my new JOY co-ord so that I can photograph it in a pretty setting, yet the weather outside is grey and gloomy so I’m worrying bare legs may be a mistake. Maybe I need a jumper in case it gets cold? Maybe I should wear sandals but bring a sturdier boot in case it starts raining? I begin packing an extra bag of paraphernalia for all of these eventualities I’ve concocted in my head before stopping myself realising that carrying a bag full of clothes I don’t need around Cambridge all day is going to be beyond annoying. After a few shoe dilemma’s I decide to wear the original outfit I planned and worry about the weather later…


11.30am…

Due to my morning wardrobe freak out, we of course miss the 10.30am train and after a check and re-check, decide we should be able to get any train to Cambridge using our specified tickets. We aim for the 11.30am train but somehow still find ourselves rushing on route to Liverpool Street and only just make the train with seconds to spare. We flop down on our seats, exhausted before the day has even begun only to hear the conductor announce that the next stop will be one much closer to our home. We look at each other, slowly realising that we could have avoided all that rushing around on tubes and overgrounds  in favour of a simple walk to our nearest station, and can’t help but laugh. ‘At least we’re on the train and on our way’ I proclaim before moaning that I’m now without a cup of tea and feel like I’ve run a marathon on an empty stomach…

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1pm…

As we arrive in Cambridge the sun is shining bright and suddenly my worry over being too cold seems ridiculous. Instead I begin stressing about the opposite; my outfit being overly autumnal and wishing I’d chose to wear sandals. Luckily the wind strikes up to remind me that we aren’t in the South of France and I decide to try and stop fretting over garment troubles. Having left the house in a hurry without breakfast and surviving an hour and a half train journey without my usual morning cuppa, we’ve got one thing on the brain and that’s food. GB has one request – a good Sunday roast (beef preferable) – and I have another – lunch by the river – so we set about finding a traditional English country pub where we can tick both options…

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1.30pm…

The walk from the train station is further than we imagined, and we don’t exactly know where we’re going so we’re just following the crowd. So far we’ve passed a number of chain restaurants but no country pubs so we keep moving along the high street in search of the main city centre hub and more importantly the river. We get slightly distracted when we spot the beautiful Downing College grounds open to the public, all washed stone walls and pretty tree lined streets. I don’t dare ask that we do outfit photos, as I know GB is starving, but secretly I think this would be the perfect location to shoot my co-ord. Luckily GB suggests it and we start snapping some shots on the grounds against the quaint wooden doors and cute greenery…

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2pm…

It’s a wrap on the photography session and I’m pretty happy to have them out of the way and be free to enjoy my day, no longer worrying about what I’m wearing or how I’m looking, thank goodness GB suggested doing them then. But by now we are absolutely ravenous and the hunt for grub has stepped up a notch. 3G mysteriously disappeared the minute we arrived in Cambridge so we’re operating on the old school, follow your instincts, method. Clearly our instincts are severely out of practice after relying on our iPhone’s for so long as soon we’ve passed through the town centre and ended up at the river, but not the right side of the river. We’re getting harassed by students offering punting rides for no less than £28 each (day light robbery!) but with each person we ask where all the good pubs are, we get closer to the realisation that we’ve walked in the wrong direction and may have to back track significantly to get close to the pubs we’d googled on the train journey here. We decide we’re faar too hungry to be backtracking and instead duck into the nearest pub that has a seat. It’s not by the river and it looks suspiciously like a dodgy version of Wetherspoons, but it is close to the river and more importantly it sells food, which at this point is all we care about…

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2.30pm…

As soon as we take out seats in the garden area on a rickety table surrounded by some old men who are much more intoxicated than is proper at 2.30pm on a Sunday in Cambridge, we suspect we may have made a mistake. But we stick with it because we can think of nothing except food by now. We stick with it through lemonade’s from a dud pump, through terrible service and wrong orders being delivered, through a lack of cutlery and a lopsided table, and even through an extremely disappointing roast dinner to which GB looks most forlorn by…

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3pm…

We pay and leave the establishment with haste, desperate to be back outside in the sunshine and leaving a bad experience behind. We decide to walk off our disappointing meal and take in the Cambridge sights. I take some photos of the tourists punting down the river before walking back through town in the direction the students had pointed us in when asking about pubs. We take in the famous Kings College, buzzing with people who are blatantly ignoring the ‘stay off the grass’ signs in favour of posing in front of the gates. We amble through the pretty cobbled streets and peruse the little shops we pass with everything from homemade fudge to college hoodies…

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4pm…

We’ve passed all of the pubs we had been trying to find earlier, each of which look much nicer than where we ended up but now we’ve got a different culinary delight on the brain – I’m keen to enjoy a cream tea. It’s one of my favourite things to do in a quaint little town and I’d been especially excited about enjoying a scone and jam in Cambridge. We hunt down Fitzbillies, recommended through the interweb for having the best Chelsea buns in town and upon seeing a beautifully kitsch window display full of retro cameras and vintage tea sets, I’m sold…

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4.30pm…

It’s busy and frantic in Fitzbillies and the indoor decor is a world away from the window displays leaving me fairly disappointed at my ornament free table and bare walls. The service is a little off and our overpriced food arrives at different times, my scone not even warm. But compared to our lunch experience it’s like a five star venue so we giggle at the monumental bad luck we seem to be having and munch our way through our cakes happily…

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5.00pm…

We consider taking a Chelsea bun away with us for the journey home but seeing as the cakes didn’t live up to expectations, we decide against it and instead head back to a small sweet shop we passed on route. It reminds me of Fred and George’s shop of curiosities in Harry Potter which can only be a good thing, and we enter the tiny cave full of thousands upon thousands of retro sweet tubs. We are quite literally like kids in a, well, sweet shop and as we reach the counter get flustered trying to choose between the endless options. Our little weighing scales keeps on edging up and before we know it, we’re exiting with £5 worth of pick n mix for the train home…

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6.00pm…

We collapse in a tired heap on our train home, this time knowing that we can travel all the way home and not have to traipse across London on the tubes, which makes us happy indeed. All things considered we decide we had a splendid day out in Cambridge, despite our bad luck with eating establishments. No matter what happens we find a way to laugh our way through and today was no different. I flick back through the photos on my camera and marvel at how pretty Cambridge is, and give myself props for choosing what turned out to be the perfect outfit.

BB

x

 

7 Comments

Linda

I am exhausted just reading this! But, you know what- it shows that life isn’t always perfect and sometimes you just have to make the best of it! At least you can laugh! Great blog!

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Jaclyn

I know me too! I think blogs often give the impression that life is perfect all the time so sometimes it’s nice to open up about the ‘reality’ of a blog post hehe x

Reply
Kath Warren

This was wonderful. And now I really want to visit Cambridge. It’s so nice to read a post that is honest and fast paced and, as you said, rambly. Loved it! x

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