Monday, November 8, 2010

Amidst My Weekend Escapades...

Stonehenge is right up there on the list of places that are way more amazing to see in person than you could ever have imagined.

It's hard to describe the feeling that these 5,000-year-old rocks gave me. I went there this past Saturday with two friends from the Stanford-in-Oxford program, and I think we were all in awe.

- R

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Hoping to get back in the saddle!

To follow up on Rachel's post...I'm also looking to get back in the saddle as soon as possible. I don't think that I'm ready to try my hand at polo yet (lack of hand-eye coordination might be a small problem) but I'd be happy just trail riding somewhere at this point. I've never gone more than a month without riding so I'm definitely starting to get a little antsy. Hopefully I can start riding a bit at the eq. center near my homestay-- can't wait to see if my Italian is good enough to get me some jumping lessons! Should be interesting to say the least. Now that I'm not riding though, a lot of the time that I would usually spend at the barn has been taken up by traveling so I guess I can't be too sad :) Here are some photos from Venice and San Gimignano over the past couple of weekends:


San Gimignano

More later when I don't have papers that I should be writing!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Back in the Saddle

Since Oxford is a university with as many (if not more) student clubs and groups as Stanford, I've taken the opportunity to get involved. I've joined the boat club for my affiliated college, Corpus Christi, super early and cold mornings out on the water and all. Now, my two years in the Bay Area haven't quite dispelled my native New Mexican wonder at actually seeing water, much less substantial quantities of it, and I'm also not the most coordinated rower - but oh well. It's been an exciting new challenge, and it gets me out of the library.

More excitingly, though, I've had the chance to go out and play polo! I've missed the horses a ton since I've been here (to the extent of having frequent riding-related dreams), and although the polo club here is rather loosely organized and my schedule's often packed full, I've been able to make it out to ride twice so far. My questionable ability to connect mallet to ball notwithstanding, it's been a lot of fun, and today we even played a mini-chukka three on three! Granted, it's an entirely different kind of riding, but pulling on my boots, getting back in the saddle, and coming back smelling like horse: almost nothing makes me happier. Especially when I also get to enjoy the idyllic, sprawling green fields and fall colors of the English countryside. The polo ponies are so agile and clever, too, I can't get over it. Now those horses know their jobs!

I had the wild notion that it'd be fun to go foxhunting, too, but I think that idea will fall through...

- R