Good day, my dear readers!
Last weekend I went on a trip to a small village in the area of Wiltshire. It was part of the HOST program, which gives international students the chance to spend a weekend with a host family in different parts of England – sort of as an opportunity to get out of London and experience the countryside.
My host family was very lovely and they took me to see Salisbury Cathedral on Saturday. For those of you who don’t know, Salisbury Cathedral was used as a filming location in the mini series Pillars of the Earth (after the novel by Ken Follett). Because of that I always wanted to go and see the Cathedral for myself but had never gotten around to do it. How excited was I that I spontaneously got to visit this beautiful work of art!
In pillars of the Earth they have a lovely little model of the Cathedral before they built it:
In the actual Cathedral, they also have a model of how it could have looked like back in the days when it was built:
I thought that was a great way of showing the building process, giving us a glimpse into the past. Apparently, Salisbury Cathedralw as built in only 38 years – a very short time for such an enourmous monument, considering that it was built in the 13th century. In comparison, the Cologne Cathedral took rougly 600 years longer to construct, even though they started around the same time…
I find Salisbury Cathedral a very beautiful work of architecture and I tried to take a few more artistic pictures. Here’s what came out of that endeavor:
Currently, the Magna Carta is on display at Salisbury Cathedral. Of course I had to see that one, too! But to be honest, it is “just” a piece of parchment with incredibly tiny letters on it. It is written in Old English AND with abbreviations, so there was absolutely no way I could decipher even a single word. But you can go ahead and try it, I took a picture of it! (Excuse the reflections, of course the document was well protected under glass.)
Apart from that trip to Salisbury, the rest of the weekend was also great. My host family showed me their village and we talked about god and the world – quite literally. I also got to watch a match of Cricket – not the most exciting sport in terms of rapid movement and such, but it was more fascinating when I finally started to grasp the concepts and strategies of the game. Am I now officially British? 😀
Needless to say I enjoyed my countryside exchange very much and I am very glad I had the chance to go. If you, dear reader, are an international student in London, you might want to apply for a HOST stay yourself!
I am now revising for the upcoming exams – I can’t believe this will be my last exams in quite possibly ever! I’ll do my best to get through them and then run down the home stretch called “writing the master thesis”. Well, let’s hope for the best!