Decided to go and visit my parents instead. It's a 2-hour drive, nearly all A14 and M1, first time I'd driven that far on my own (and first time I'd done motorways on my own). I didn't get lost, I didn't do anything stupid, and I did get a chance to listen to lots of tapes (The Shamen, "Boss Drum"; Alisha's Attic, "Alisha Rules the World"; Mary Chapin Carpenter, "A Place in the World"; Kate Bush, "The Kick Inside").
As always, I felt my spirits start to lift a little as the landscape started developing contours. Cambridge's flatness really does depress me; I need mountains in my life! In the meantime, though, even the rolling Wolds country helped a little bit, especially with the setting sun pouring red-golden light over the fields and hills.
My parents fed me nice food (tuna steaks marinaded in lime & ginger, with new potatoes, asparagus and broccoli) and lots of wine. We watched "Who Wants to be a Millionaire", and bits of the Old Grey Whistle Test on DVD; and we talked, and generally just relaxed. I got plenty of sleep, and then spent Sunday sorting out Stuff in my room. Sifted through heaps of paper and threw out loads of rubbish: council tax bills from rented house in Oxford; letters about fire extinguishers in College; heaps of random crap from St Aldate's, etc. Also put aside piles of books to go to charity shops.
Most of the stuff I've got rid of was Oxford-related -- papers from my time as a student, or books that I bought because I thought they'd come in useful some time while I was studying English. Somehow I feel as though I don't need to hang on to it all any more. I'm still hoping to go back Oxford in the not-too-distant future, but if I do it'll be on different terms, for different reasons. It won't be to reclaim the opportunities I missed as a student, but to start a new chapter of my life.