Friday 27 April 2012: Where I went today? Uppsala University
I've come to a small town north of Stockholm which amounts, according to friends, to Sweden's Oxford, where Lund is its Cambridge. I'm at a meeting at the University, which is the oldest in Sweden, dating back to the 16th century.
Yesterday evening, we were taken around the Gustavianum - the University Museum - where we got a chance to see some amazing objects including the only surviving Augsburg Art Cabinet and a prototype celsius thermometer. Perched on top of the museum (which is in the foreground of the picture, with the Cathedral towering above) you can see the anatomical theatre, which was first constructed in the 1660s. It made the Edinburgh Anatomy Theatre look positively modern.
After looking around the museum, we were taken to one of Uppsala's 'Nations', student associations which support and complement the official learning and teaching dimension of the University, and also provide a focus for social activities. We were regaled during dinner by the Varmlands Nation choir, and it was one of those moments when you suddenly realise that what you thought would be quite a banal evening was turning into something quite different. The singing was wonderful, heartfelt, high quality. 50 young people who just love to sing. Then one in our number, Lillis O Laoire - a scholar of Gaelic and celtic folklore from Galway in Ireland - led them in a Gaelic lament by Mary for her son at the time of the cruxifiction, which is in the traditional sean nos form of Gaelic song from Donegal in North West Ireland. The choir picked up their lines amazingly quickly, following the lead of Lillis O Laoire and, one way or another, lots of cold hearted academics were brought close to tears. Quite an amazing musical experience, and definitely not what was expected.
I've just realised that my most popular bliip ever was a year ago today. Have a look at my "about Arclight" page if you want to know why. Now I guess it's just a self-perpetuating phenomenon.
This image is part of a 30 day April Challenge started by some blippers/photographers in Iceland
3. In my neighbourhood
7. In my purse
13. Written words
17. The last thing I bought
19. Summer is here!
21. Before / After
22. Good times
24. I'm thankful for...
26. A sign
27. Somewhere I went today
28. At 13:00