Monday, 13 April 2009
Visitor from Brazil
I had a nice surprise today. Mimi Liang - the head librarian from the British School in Rio - was over in the UK and came up to Cambridge to say hi.
Cambridge was packed with visitors but we went on a tour of the city. We had a look round the market, and the lovely Round Church and walked through the gardens at Magdalene, which were ablaze with daffodils, bluebells, primroses and snakeshead fritilliaries.
I took her to Kettle's Yard museum - the fascinating house that used to belong to Jim Ede, stuffed full of paintings by his friends - Christopher Wood, Alfred Wallis, Ben Nicholson and others. I had forgotten just how special that house is. All our searching for a house in Cambridge and the truth is that Kettle's Yard is probably the one.
I'm afraid it would be closed to visitors if we owned it though.
Walking back into the centre we looked in St John's College with its lovely bridges and then went for a cup of coffee in Heffers Bookshop. From there we walked through town heading in the direction of the station, popping in to Pembroke College on the way, huge carp moving around the pond like sharks, their fins sticking out of the water.
It was nice to see Mimi and catch up on news of all the great librarians at the British School. They made me feel so welcome when I was there, though as I said to Mimi, I felt frustrated that I did not really see Rio. I spent most of my time in the back of a car or in school libraries. I didn't walk around the place the way we walked around Cambridge today and that is what I always want to do in a new place - walk around and have a cup of coffee and just see what goes on. I like seeing what people eat, what's in the shops, what music is coming out of people's cars.
Maybe next time. . .