Pimms, strawberries, sunshine, punts … bliss!

Posted on August 2, 2006 in Uncategorized

‘Let your boat of life be light, packed with only what you need – simple pleasures, one or two friends, worth the name, a dog, and a pipe or two, enough to eat and enough to wear, and a little more than enough to drink; for thirst is a dangerous thing.’

Jerome K. Jerome, 3 Men in a Boat

This year’s punting party was a roaring success. The sun shone, there was food aplenty, and the Pimm’s flowed as freely as the river.

Five men (and 4 women) in a boatAfter gathering at the Rose and Crown we headed riverwards, settling with our loot on the bank near the Cherwell Boat House. A steady trickle of arrivals left us with twenty or thirty people, keeping the three punts hard at work. Unlike last year, everyone managed to stay dry (i.e. out of the river). In fact, the only misfortune we suffered was the loss of a boat …

Deb Saunders (ex-Oxford Chair), Nadeem Ahmed (Oxford Treasurer), and others were among the first to head up the river. After a longer-than-expected absence had passed, a search party went forth.

Those of you who are familiar with Oxford will know that north of the Cherwell Boat House, not too far away, lies a punters’ paradise: the Vicky Arms. It beckons, beside the river, to all who pass it (indeed, passing it altogether is a rare feat). And it so happened that some of our SYP were unavoidably detained, pints in hand … and not, in fact, lost at all.

mmm...PimmsMost of us spent the afternoon lolling on punts eating strawberries and drinking whatever had been smuggled aboard. Inevitably this meant close brushes with the banks of the river, and occasionally even closer brushes with the trees that leaned over them (a choice picture of one such collision has been omitted from this article).

In between comings and goings people chatted at the riverside enjoying food and good company. We had a good showing from both London and Oxford, and it was great opportunity to get to know people in both chapters better. I’d like to thank the London Committee for their good showing, and also Guy Hobbes, Oxford’s Social Secretary, for arranging such a fab time. And to everyone else: next year, don’t miss it!