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A picture of the cafe and bar with orange lights

The week did not start well. So, I shall start on Friday. Experts in nutrition would, I fear, take a dim view of buckets full of sugar and artificial colourings. Oswald certainly turned his nose up in his haughtiest manner. No matter. Having noted our beloved mascot’s preference for live rodents, Lee, Steven, Richard and I concluded that lurid buckets full of cheap sweets would be more popular than raw mice.

So we prepared for Halloween by scurrying around college delivering a small plastic receptacle full of confectionery to each flat and town house. I can only recommend that you brush thoroughly, rinse with mouth wash and adopt a diet of fresh vegetables, nuts and pulses for the next seven days. 

On Thursday, I was delighted to welcome a large group of South livers out to the JCR for a College matriculation ceremony. The event was a complete success and Oswald was plainly enraptured to have an additional opportunity to hear the oath of loyalty repeated with such enthusiasm and commitment. His vanity was further rewarded as dozens of new photographs of Southies posing beside him in academic gowns were uploaded to the internet. Oswald has a growing sense that his global reputation will soon rival those of Hedwig and his own long dead relative who was last seen at sea with a Pussycat in a beautiful pea green boat. I enjoyed greatly the opportunity to show the new Southies their College and our wonderful facilities. 

On Wednesday I had a very productive meeting with Freya Firth-Robson, President of South College Music Society. The Society has agreed to form a choir that will sing in the Plaza on November 11th immediately after our trumpeter, Charlotte Ward marks the Armistice with a rendition of the Last Post. I am delighted to see early evidence of the musical talent and ambition that exists in South, and I look forward to hearing many and diverse performances at Formals, on College Days and…well is there ever a bad time for good music? Oswald claims Beethoven scares away his favourite variety of field mouse, but I suspect this is a poor excuse from an owl whose speed of attack has been diminished by overindulgence.

Monday was not a happy day. The discovery that South students had allowed students from several other colleges to socialise here with no regard for social distancing and despite the danger of infection left me deeply disappointed. I hope that lessons have and will be learned. Later in the week, I was heartened to receive letters of sincere apology from some of the visitors.