Cambridge Privilege

>>  Wednesday, March 28, 2018

My friend's daughter has gone to Trinity College Cambridge.  She's always been a bright spark and I am happy and proud of her.  But our visit there a while back left me with mixed emotions.

It was an enormous privilege to go into the buildings.  We went into the Wren library with cases showing papers by Newton, Chaucer and many others.
The whole place is about tradition, walls that have stood for hundreds of years.  Student's names painted over their room doors and on boards.  Porters in bowler hats.
A dining hall like Hogwarts.

The students don't cook for themselves, they don't clean for themselves, they have someone come in and make their beds and empty their bins.  They are told not to take a part-time job.

This is the life that the elite lead before they start to run the country and control the lives of people that understand the nature of being 'normal' and not having someone to scrub your toilet for you.

Obviously friend's daughter gets good bursaries and friend is not worrying about how to pay for the rent plus cost of food etc  I am already starting to wonder how I am to bridge the gap between Cog's halls of residence rent and her living loan she will qualify for next Autumn, let alone the general cost of living expenses like food and books.

Friend's daughter attends a lot of formal balls and goes to events listening to great speakers.

It truly is a most amazing place.
But I am bitter that this life is not the life that the majority of people live and yet this is the life of connections, life long clubs and has students happy to burn money in the face of homeless people
We had a really lovely day there and I would love to go back and spend more time with friend's daughter.  She really is a special person.
We did an eye-spy trail booklet that I have had for many years as friend and I had always been planning a trip to Cambridge when the girls were young and we never got around to it.

Cog was too ill to go with me so it added to my odd emotions for the day that I was doing the trail without her.

I'm so happy for my friends but also stuck with a sense of life really does deal some shit blows at times.
As we searched up and down a shopping street for a particular clue we walked past the same homeless lad a few times, he was young and looked so cold and tired.

It seemed so unfair that he sat there within a 100 yards of the gateway of a University College that has £1 billion  in net assets.

I gave him a £10 went down on the floor with him for a while and asked him how he was doing whilst my friends carried on clue hunting.  I told him about a program I'd been watching on TV about homeless people living in tents and asked him where he was sleeping at the moment.  Then I felt guilty for harping on, I wondered if I needed to reground myself from the elitism by talking to him or whether I just needed to find my own place of superiority when everything else had made me feel small.   He was a nice guy, too polite, I think, to be impolite if I had said anything stupid and he made me feel happy.

I  wonder a little at how a University is allowed to own so much when so many students now will not be able to attend University because of the rising cost.  I guess there will always be the haves and have nots.  But the divide seems so wide sometimes, it screams along the streets with restaurants gearing up for the champagne drinkers that will come later and walk past the young lad lying in the doorway.


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