Known as “The City of Dreaming Spires,” the university buildings of Oxford include some of England’s finest architecture, dating back to Anglo-Saxon and Norman times. For more than 800 years Oxford has been home to royalty and scholars, and today tourists come from around the world to visit its historic sites such as the Bodleian Library, the Ashmolean Museum or Balliol College, founded in 1263. Huge buses fill the city all year round, clogging up streets that were laid out in much less congested times. It’s something to consider if you’re ever thinking of driving across the city.
Caught in the midday traffic, I’m about 20 minutes late for my meeting with pianist Tord Gustavsen. Once I arrive and make the usual apologies, it’s immediately apparent he’s one of those guys who isn’t fazed by anything. The 34-year-old Norwegian projects an aura of calm that seems to fill the space around him.