I am significantly de-stressed since the last time I wrote. On Wednesday evening was the Cranworth Annual Dinner which attracts virtually every Downing lawyer, as well as several from the City too. The food was decent although not outstanding, but the champagne, wine and port flowed liberally due to the usual list of sponsers as long as the menu, so the revelry continued into the night. I discovered that one of my regular readers is none other than my Director of Studies, an interesting revelation that was met with stern admonishment for not having signed the guestbook. Speaking of which, despite clear instruction, very few of you have signed it since the last one was lost (the new one is on our servers and fully maintained by me to prevent that happening again). So if you’re reading now, whoever you are, go and sign.

Post-Cranworth I headed over to J and spent a convoluted night that began in James’ room and spread across town as Radeel, Ian, Philly James (he’s a philosopher, he’s also a James, hence the name), his friend Katie and I sought out food, ending up in Catz (the college) where Ian dropped off for a while. Having roused him we trekked back to Downing with some difficulty when ninety degree corners proved to be a little too much for Ian. We headed out onto the Paddock to watch the sun come up until about six when we headed back inside.

Having got to bed around 8am, it then transpired at 10 that most of K wanted to go into London for the day. So, on 2 hours sleep, I headed off with them for a fairly non-descript day of shopping and dining in London, eventually returning to Downing around 1am. The steak I consumed along with a large slice of chocolate fudge cake at Garfunkel’s in Leicester Square has to be one of the most satisfying meals I can remember recently.

The following day was Philly James’ birthday, so I ended up spending much of the day with J people once again. The night was less adventurous, or at least less mobile, than the previous one. We gathered on one corner of the Paddock which was dominated by the Whitby garden party (at which I hear Cat was voted the new secretary). The medics all seemed to be having a fun time as we popped open several bottles of wine and beer. The party did not move as the medics wound down and disappeared. I briefly headed off to the bar at Irina’s behest, and the girl has bought me the most hideous present I can remember receiving. It’s a bright pink bulbous nose-shaped glasses stand. Positively horrific, as she well knew would be my reaction. It’s so thoughtful that she knows I have to have it sitting on my bedside table. Evil, evil girl. She also bought tinned white crab meat in brine having explained that she intended to get me something I’d never eaten before. As presents go, that was unique. Almost me-ish!

Returning to the circle on the paddock, now replete with incense sticks and glowbands, other James’ friends from home in Guildford arrived and I ended up chatting to Elliot for much of the evening. Glowbands found their way in a bottle of Malibu that glowed suspiciously as two ex-barmen attempted to perform tricks (apparently you can’t teach a new barman old tricks). Another set were wrapped around the inside of a frisbee creating a very cool UFO.

Saturday was the first totally empty day on my calendar and it was fantastic to lounge around with Beccy and some others all afternoon. Hanging with the J crowd has been really chilled and a nice change of pace which is exactly what I needed.