Cambridge, February 17.
This week Cambridge has had another cold spell, and undergraduates have had some more skating on ice which was dangerously thin and appallingly rough, it is true but still ice. It is and that there is nothing nearer than the Ural Mountains to protect Cambridge from an East Wind. It has certainly seemed so to us walking to nine o'clock lectures these last few mornings.
We are now getting to the time of term when those people who have been buried under piles of work in the University Library and such haunts of learning for the past few weeks begin to tire and take to giving parties instead. One is now daily besieged with invitations to luncheons, teas, sherry, dinner, and more peculiar functions. Work is temporarily put in the background, to be reinstated as an immediate reality when we find at the beginning of next term that these all-important yearly exams are only a month ahead. But for the present gaiety is king.
In the spare time from pleasures most people seem to be hopping in and out of theatres, and not only as spectators. During the last week the Mummers, the largest of the University dramatic societies, has been giving admirable performances of Shaw's "Heartbreak House"; this week the newly opened Arts Theatre is giving us an Ibsen cycle. Meanwhile all one's friends seem to be doing something in the grand Amateur Dramatic Club production of "Julius Caesar," which is taking shape in its rehearsals very promisingly for its performances in the last week of term.
But there are others of one's friends who mysteriously refuse cigarettes, invitations, drinks. Astonished at such reformations, one finds they are only temporary. That part of the University which scorns to prepare to act is preparing to now. At the end of this week the Lent Races, precursors of the Mays which crown the rowing year next term, take place, and the chances of the colleges are everywhere eagerly discussed. And of course the Varsity boat is entering its final stages of training for the annual race against Oxford in about a month's time. The golfers, too, are preparing for their university struggle. In fact, the air is full of everything but work. That will come soon.