Sunday, 23 June 2019

My very last

A lot of things happening in my life now are happening for the very last time. To anticipate irrelevant reactions: I am not in any way upset about it, I am just stating a fact.

I gave my last lectures already in the previous term. I did my last PhD examination in April. This coming week, I will have last supervisions with my masters students. I will do my very last grading in July.

I attended the last Evensong and the last formal dinner. I attended the last guest lecture and the last end-of-year celebration. I attended the last college Governing Body meeting and Fellows' dinner. I attended a set of last supervisors' dinners. I have one last committee meeting on Monday.

Then I will have my last Long Vacation. Typically, Long Vacation means research time. Now, I will indeed have a vacation. I will be vacating my office.

Now is my last chance to do some things I have enjoyed in Cambridge. I have already missed the last chance to go to Evensong at King's Chapel – they only do it in term time. Maybe I should go to Fitzwilliam Museum one last time. Maybe I should go to my favourite garden, Clare Fellows' garden, one last time. Maybe I should go to Anglesey Abbey one last time. Maybe I should go to Ely one last time.

Actually, maybe I should go to London and see Rosetta Stone one last time. Or the Great Bed of Ware. Or a musical.

I have already taken the last chance to go to the Orkney Islands (I will write about it separately). I have definitely missed my last chances to go to Skye, Lake District, Durham and other places that have been on my list for years. Don't tell me I can come back – you know very well that I won't.

I have the last chance to visit some friends with whom I have for ever and ever said: ”We must get together one of these days”. There are very few days remaining. Just a handful of days.

I have the last chance to go to restaurants and tea rooms where I haven't been.

There are many things I will never do. I will never go punting (other than with a guide), or attend a May Ball or a dinner at Trinity.

I have bought my last bottle of shampoo, my last box of tea, my last bottle of cooking oil. I have just received my last railcard.

I have my last hairdresser appointment, my last dentist appointment, my last gym sessions.

It may all sound rather depressing unless you think that afterwards, everything, absolutely everything will be my first. 

Last walk along the guided busway?