Experiencing another culture has given me a unique perspective on the world. Now, I feel better equipped to sift through what matters in life. I still can’t tell you the meaning of life, but I can tell you to go watch an English football game. If you don’t see the connection, you need to come to Cambridge and clear your head so you can see the obvious answer. Seeing as you’re unlikely to actually purchase a plane ticket and visit the centre, despite the fact you’d have the time of your life, I’ll just bring some head-clearing Cambridge antics to you.

Egypt! I took this picture at Norwich Castle Museum before heading to a football game. A fine example of Cambridge antics.

Cambridge has given me loads of time to relax. In so doing, Cambridge has given me more opportunities to learn more about both others and myself than a book could ever dream too (that is, assuming books can dream). Virtually all cultures make use of some form of recreation. But before I tell you about my visit to Norwich to watch the Canaries play the Wanderers, I want to break the word “recreation” into two pieces: re-creation. Woah. Here’s my theory: when one becomes totally immersed in play, the self tends to disappear, and when it returns, parts of it have been re-created. In light of this, I’m thinking of signing my blog posts with a different name each week.


Ferdinand Risola, your writer, enjoys playing this ancient game with his study abroad mates.

Why do we play? What’s the problem with never recreating ourselves and just becoming stagnant, boring people? You’ve surely heard the proverb, “all work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy.” Well, maybe Jack realized some great truth about himself and decided he’d rather become dull than risk moving on to something else. Take a second and think about that.

Here’s a picture I took on the streets of Cambridge shortly after it had rained outside. I thought the watermarks looked like a person. For purposes of illustration, pretend this is Jack.








Well, here’s what I think. Behind the force that drives humans to create ways to pass the time with one another lies a desire for community. Communities are ever-changing, so a person who tries to stay the same is going to run into trouble if he or she ever wants to fulfil the basic human need of spending time with people.

I like people, so I embrace the change play has to offer. That’s why I went to an English football game when I don’t even watch English football. That’s why I found myself cheering alongside other fans when the Canaries scored a goal (twice). That’s why I love being in Cambridge so much.

Click the above picture for a video for the chant Norwich county does when they score a goal.



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