This seems like a long time ago – on the one sunny day of the Michaelmas half term, I met an old friend I haven’t seen in years. We were driving back from Bampton (here frolicking in the leaves outside Isobel’s house), I pointed out how wonderful it was to listen to her talk like it hadn’t been six years since we last met. I’m so glad we have stayed in touch.From Bampton to London. I had a rather lovely walk along the South Bank, even with an Atlantic gale blowing. On my way I met the original man in tights, Laurence Olivier, and had lunch at the National Theatre restaurant. Sometimes I hate London, and sometimes she gives me a gift of a day.And from London to Oxford. The second half of the term was sometimes sad and often stressful, and the weather gloomy and depressing, but somehow we made it to the end of the term.We had one cold, crispy early winter’s day. One. But it was a lovely day.And then suddenly it was time for making decorations and presents, putting up the tree, and learning new crafts.And keeping up with the old.And now it’s Christmas.