Thursday, August 4, 2011

This is not goodbye, just see ya later!

I must say now that I am sitting in this very hot internet cafe in Mastatal, Costa Rica, I am reflecting a lot on my trip to Oxford. It was cold but it wasn't hot and sticky like it is here. We didn't sleep with bugs, spiders, lizards, or the cockroaches just the occasional moth. I thought the spider on my wall at the Jesus Graduate Housing was bad that doesn't even compare to this!

Never the less Oxford was amazing. To the friends I made, to the weekend adventures, to the findings on my final research project.

My final research project in Oxford turned out to be great. I learned about old British buildings and what today is new. I learned that after World War 2, 11 new colleges were built and with that come this need for change. 11 somewhat modern colleges were built. I did one case study on St.Catherine's College. This had some modern aspects but also keep some of the traditional aspects of the colleges around centuries before. The exterior of St. Catherine’s college hides the modern interior. Jacobsen, the architect, strived for classical symmetry throughout the college. The courtyard went against university traditions. It wasn't completely closed in and it allowed for space to freely flow out in vast quantities. It failed to capture the Oxford quadrangle mystique. And the heights of the buildings were too low in relation to the width of the squares. But with modern changes to buildings in Oxford came some positive fed back. They thought, even though the detailing was repetitive, it was excellent. They also praised the workmanship of St.Catherine’s college; it was of a quality rarely seen in Britain during this era. They also thought the formal dining room was splendid. They also liked the roof system, it looked like the windows were supporting themselves and it gave off this magnificent feel to the room. So overall change can be good even though the people in the town might not agree with it.

St. Catherines street view

Formal dining hall

Pictures of St.Catherines Courtyard
Overall I learned a lot from my research project and Gawon was a great research partner. Not being an architect major I was a little nervous that Gawon would have the uphand but I think I held my own pretty well.

Since this is my final reflective blog I would like to say thank you to Brian and Faye for an awesome trip. As well as Chuck for all the great pictures and a great gardern party!

I wish I would blog more because I have so much to say about Oxford and how wonderful my experience was but on a timed internet service and no free wifi I must wrap it up!
I can't belive all the AMAZING people I meet in Oxford, UW Seattle students our wonderful people to work with and ro spend 6 weeks with. I would do another study abroad with this group of people to a heart beat!! :)
Ya me despido. Gracias por todo. Que te cuides

More pictures below: but of course you can find the majority of pictures on my facebook! =)