Friday, 26 December 2008

Movie meme: I'm not a film geek really...

(x) Rocky Horror Picture Show
(x) Grease
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest
( ) Boondock Saints
(x) Fight Club
(x) Starsky and Hutch
(x) Neverending Story
(x) Blazing Saddles
(x) Universal Soldier
(x ) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
(x) Along Came Polly
( ) Joe Dirt
(x) KING KONG (original)
Total so far: 12

(x) A Cinderella Story
( ) The Terminal
( ) The Lizzie McGuire Movie
(x) Passport to Paris
(x) Dumb & Dumber
(x) Dumber & Dumberer
(x) Final Destination
(x) Final Destination 2
(x) Final Destination 3
(x) Halloween
(x) The Ring (the original and the Hollywood remake)
(x) The Ring 2
( ) Surviving -MAS
( ) Flubber
Total so far: 22

( ) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
(x) Practical Magic
(x) Chicago
(x) Ghost Ship
( ) From Hell
(x) Hellboy
(x) Secret Window
(x) I Am Sam
(x) The Whole Nine Yards
(x) The Whole Ten Yards
Total so far: 30

(x) The Day After Tomorrow
(x) Child’s Play
( ) Seed of Chucky
( ) Bride of Chucky
(x) Ten Things I Hate About You
(x) Just Married
(x) Gothika
(x) Nightmare on Elm Street
(x) Sixteen Candles
(x) Remember the Titans
(x) Coach Carter
( ) The Grudge
( ) The Grudge 2
(x) The Mask
( ) Son Of The Mask
Total so far: 40

(x) Bad Boys
( ) Bad Boys 2
( ) Joy Ride
(x) Lucky Number Sleven
(x) Ocean’s Eleven
(x) Ocean’s Twelve
(x) Bourne Identity
(x) Bourne Supremacy
( ) Lone Star
(x) Bedazzled (original only)
( ) Predator I
( ) Predator II
(x) The Fog
(x) Ice Age
(x) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
( ) Curious George
Total so far: 50

(x) Independence Day
( ) Cujo
(x) A Bronx Tale
(x) Darkness Falls
(x) Christine
(x) ET
(x) Children of the Corn
( ) My Bosses Daughter
(x) Maid in Manhattan
(x) War of the Worlds
(x) Rush Hour
(x) Rush Hour 2
Total so far: 60

( ) Best Bet
(x) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
(x) She’s All That
(x) Calendar Girls
(x) Sideways
(x) Mars Attacks
(x) Event Horizon
(x) Ever After
(x) Wizard of Oz
(x) Forrest Gump
(x) Big Trouble in Little China
(x) The Terminator
(x) The Terminator 2
(x) The Terminator 3
Total so far: 73

(x) X-Men
(x) X2
(x) X-3
(x) Spider-Man
(x) Spider-Man 2
(x) Sky High
(x) Jeepers Creepers
( ) Jeepers Creepers 2
(x) Catch Me If You Can
(x) The Little Mermaid
(x) Freaky Friday (seen both)
( ) Reign of Fire
( ) The Skulls
(x) Cruel Intentions
( ) Cruel Intentions 2
( ) The Hot Chick
(x) Shrek
(x) Shrek 2
Total so far: 86

( ) Swimfan
(x) Miracle on 34th street
( ) Old School
(x) The Notebook
(x) K-Pax
( ) Kippendorf’s Tribe
(x) A Walk to Remember
( ) Ice Castles
(x) Boogeyman
(x) The 40-year-old-virgin
Total so far: 92

(x) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
( ) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
( ) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(x) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(x) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(x) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Total so far: 96

( ) Baseketball
(x) Hostel
( ) Waiting for Guffman
( ) House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
(x) Elf
(x) Highlander
(x) Mothman Prophecies
(x) American History
( ) Three
Total so Far: 101

(x) The Jacket
( ) Kung Fu Hustle
( ) Shaolin Soccer
(x) Night Watch
(x) Monsters Inc.
(x) Titanic
(x) Monty Python and the Holy Grail
(x) Shaun Of the Dead
(x) Willard
Total so far: 109

( ) High Tension
( ) Club Dread
(x) Hulk
(x) Dawn of the Dead
(x) Hook
(x) Chronicle Of Narnia The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
(x) 28 days later
( ) Orgazmo
( ) Phantasm
(x) Waterworld
Total so far: 115

(x) Kill Bill vol 1
(x) Kill Bill vol 2
( ) Mortal Kombat
( ) Wolf Creek
(x) Kingdom of Heaven
( ) the Hills Have Eyes
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
( ) The Last House on the Left
( ) Re-Animator
(x) Army of Darkness
Total so far: 119

(x) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
( ) Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
( ) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith
(x) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope
(x) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
(x) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
( ) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage
( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor
Total so far: 123

(x) The Matrix
(x) The Matrix Reloaded
(x) The Matrix Revolutions
( ) Animatrix
( ) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
(x) Team America: World Police
(x) Red Dragon
(x) Silence of the Lambs
(x) Hannibal
Total so far: 130

( ) Battle Royale
( ) Battle Royale 2
(x) Brazil
(x) Contact
(x) Cube
(x) Dr. Strangelove
( ) Enlightenment Guaranteed
(x) Four Rooms
(x) Memento
(x) Pi
(x) Requiem for a Dream
(x) Pulp Fiction
(x) Reservoir Dogs
(x) Run Lola Run
( ) Russian Ark
(x) Serenity
(x) Sin City
(x) Snatch
(x) Spider
(x) The Sixth Sense
(x) The Village
( ) Waking Life
( ) Zatoichi
( ) Ikiru
(x) The Seven Samurai
( ) Brick
( ) Akira

Total 148

OK I've watched a lot of movies (including many many not on this list that I deem classics)

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

100 things I may or may not have done meme

Bold what you've done. . .As seen at various blogs/.

1. Started my own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than I can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sung a solo.
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched lightning at sea
14. Taught myself an art from scratch.
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning (not good when sleeping in a tent)
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty. (Been there but in 2003 they didn't let you up there)
18. Grown my own vegetables. (grown my own herbs)
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France.
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitchhiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill.
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse (98% totality)
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run. (hit a full rounder once)
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of my ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught myself a new language.
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke.
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had my portrait painted (I had lots of friends who did art at school)
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud.
54. Gone to a drive-in theater (well a mock one in Burbank)
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies.
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check. Amazingly no.
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy.
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial.
71. Eaten caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square.
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle.
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book.
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had my picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House. I've been to the White House; I've never been inside.
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating.
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake. My sister sunk. Heh.
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee. First and second time within 2 hours of each other.
100. Ridden an elephant

Friday, 21 November 2008

Five things meme

Seen this in so many places, thought it would make a nice break from attacking my thesis.

5 things I was doing 10 years ago.

  1. In my first year of a Chemistry degree, enjoying labs and french but not the rest.
  2. About to do to my first ringing society dinner and start a very serious long term relationship.
  3. Loving exploring and discovering London.
  4. Still managing to work, ring, play my flute and sing.
  5. Getting used to having high speed on tap internet on my first computer.

5 things on my to do list today
  1. Bake a cake for a friend's birthday.
  2. Pack for the ringing society dinner and weekend in London.
  3. Work on finishing off a chapter and formatting stuff on others.
  4. Have lunch with my Grandmother.
  5. Chase up my fellow convenors for session at international conference in April.

5 snacks I love

  1. Hot chocolate
  2. Sesame snaps
  3. Jammy dodgers
  4. My Mum's version of Pret a Manger's Love bars
  5. Grandma's chocolate crispies

5 things I would do if I were a millionaire

  1. Find a job that let me do research, teach but in the USA and part-time
  2. Donate to various causes
  3. Go on an international travelling gap year
  4. Buy a house (or several in the USA, UK, possibly a small island off Belize)
  5. Pay off my student loans

5 places I've lived

  1. small village, Northants
  2. London (South Kensington, Turnpike Lane, Edgeware Road, Tottenham, Bow, Honor Oak Park, Wimbledon, Bloomsbury)
  3. Summer Camp, New Jersey
  4. Lusaka, Zambia
  5. another small village, Northants

5 jobs I've had

  1. Music teacher (many different forms including camp counsellor, Saturday morning music school)
  2. Credit controller
  3. Research Assistant
  4. Lecturer
  5. Research Chemist

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Big questions in Geography

In the attack each chapter in turn thesis strategy that is occurring in response to the great PhD meltdown of 2008 I'm currently going through my introduction.

Something I'm finding hard, and I'm sure its the imposter complex along with not wanting to sound big-headed is the contribution of my work to the big questions in my discipline. In my case this is Geography/Environmental Sciences.

Cutter et al. (2002) addressed the issue of what the big questions in Geography are. The article is from an American stand point (similar to Pattison, 1964), having come out of discussions out of AAG# but is useful in shaping my argument somewhat.

Cutter et al. (2002: 307) think that the 10 big questions are:
1. What makes places and landscapes different from one another, and why is this important?
2. Is there a deeply held human need to organize space by creating arbitrary borders, boundaries, and districts?
3. How do we delineate space?
4. Why do people, resources, and ideas move?
5. How has the earth been transformed by human action?
6. What role will virtual systems play in learning about the world?
7. How do we measure the unmeasurable?
8. What role has geographical skill played in the evolution of human civilization, and what role can it play in predicting the future?
9. How and why do sustainability and vulnerability change from place to place and over time?
10.What is the nature of spatial thinking, reasoning, and abilities?

My work fits into (5) and (9) as it involves contamination of resources (water and food), coping strategies that may be sustainable (urban agriculture, food networks, food security), issues of vulnerability (the poorer members of society having less choice and therefore perhaps less concern with risk*) and alongside these questions concerns perceptions and policy relevance.

Alongside my usual pigeonholes of environment and development (including health, pollution, toxicity, sustainability) its sometimes easier for me to say what big questions I'm trying to answer as my work by its very nature is inter/transdisciplinary.

#The differences between 'geography' in the British and American contexts let alone in university departments is definitely a subject for a post all of its own.

* Something that has often come up in focus group discussion with urban agriculturalists in the field is that they say they can't afford (in economic terms) to think about the quality of the food they eat, only getting enough in quantity. I wonder if anyone has done any research at what point in the economic growth cycle people start to become concerned with quality rather than just quantity issues (like when people start spending money on non-essential items).

Cutter, SL., Golledge, R. and Graf, WL.(2002)The Big Questions in Geography, The Professional Geographer, 54(3): 305-317. ( DOI link )
Pattison, WD. (1964) The Four Traditions of Geography, Journal of Geography, 63(5):211-216.

Sunday, 2 November 2008


International Dissertation Writing Month (InaDWriMo) is a variant on Blog a post each day of the month (NaBloMo) which is a variant on write a novel month and I've signed up at Dr Brazen Hussy .

I've had a major thesis melt down this past couple of weeks (which had been coming for a long time) so this has come at the right time.

My aim is to finish the four chapters that are mostly written (have had comments from one or both supervisors) that is the study site, heavy metal levels, food consumption and the risk measures/health issues chapter. Also I want to have the theory and methodology for the last empirical chapter done (this is the bulk of new writing). This is not word busting just sorting stuff out really. Therefore, in an ideal world (but its not in my official target) I'd make a good go at the THQ chapter (which uses stuff from the HM and food chapters). I have all the figures for this from various EGU posters and after my main supervisor's revelation that he is OK with 1000 word chapters it can be quickly writte. Especially as my office next door neighbour got rave reviews for an emprical chapter written in a day. However, I'm newly enthused about getting through the hoops to get the piece of paper so we shall see.

I love designing research, carrying it out, talking about it, doing posters, but have an issue with writing. I'm also really missing teaching this term (I've been banned so I don't get distracted).

I probably should also mention that I don't really like working on Sundays. This often becomes not working the whole weekend, something I'm trying to change or sometimes I work half of Sunday. Sometimes its weird as after ringing, church, coffee its 2pm and I'm raring to go.

Friday, 4 July 2008

US States

Well, its the 4th of July, the day the US celebrates kicking out the British once and for all. So while my American friends enjoy a day off and fireworks (I still shake my head at the difference in attitude in fireworks between here and there) I thought I'd give a brief resume of the US states that are ticked off, I've been to more than the below but they are edited highlights. I am a bit of a travel geek evidenced by the itinerary I sent to my parents and sister for my upcoming trip (which I am so counting down the days to, haven't quite got down to hours, but am close).

New York: NYC (June 2001, September 2001 [a whole post in itself], August 2003), Hamilton (August 2006)
New Jersey: Elmer (my home for 9 weeks June-August 2001)
Pennsylvania: Philly (June 2001), Wynnewood (August & September 2001), Reading (August 2001)
Washington DC: (August 2001)
Massachusetts: Boston, Amherst (August 2001, September 2001)
California: LA, SF, Merced, Yosemite (August 2003)
Washington: Seattle, Vashon (August 2003)
Oregon: Portland (August 2003)
Illinois: Chicago (August 2007)
South Dakota: Rapid City, for Mount Rushmore (August 2007). I was so surprised by South Dakota, it was filled with National Parks, another place I want to spend some more time.
Colorado: Denver(August 2007), I adored the whole feel of Denver and Colorado, I'd love to spend some more time there and go to Boulder.
Utah: (August 2007) Train from Denver to San Francisco went through Utah, I got off the train in Salt Lake City as I'd done so much about the Mormons in GCSE History when we did the American West.
Arizonia: (August 2007) Flew into Phoenix, drove to Flagstaff, visited Grand Canyon and Sedona.
Florida: Orlando and Key West (August 2007) on Dad's tour, Key West was my choice to chill out after the rest of the trip. We drove through Miami and I would have liked to spend some more time there.
Georgia: (November 2007) for a friend's wedding
Texas: (November 2007) visiting friends in Austin while I was out there for the wedding

This trip I'm not going to any new states this time (unless a certain someone has other ideas) but am picking up some new places. Its going to be good to re-visit DC and Philly along with spending some time in LA in less of a tourist mode. We are however staying in an amazing B&B in La Quinta for Joshua Tree. This is a place that has lots of the features that we talked about in a dream house, except being by a lake instead of the sea.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

the past two weeks or so...

Random points from the past two weeks or so (in no order so whatsoever chronologically or of importance).

* Five days in South Wales with Mum, sister and Grandmother. View from living room was the sea (and the north coast of Devon if clear). Walks on the beach, sun, sea, and an awful lot of writing.

* Coffee , Lunch, canal side walk. pretty train journey, lots of good conversation (including some while we're on trains going on opposite directions) on different occasions with a good friend. Although we've known each other for 9 nine years (with some ups and downs) this friendship has really developed into something different and deeper in the past six months. Where it goes neither of us knows but are happy in the friendship.

* A good friend from the USA being over with a people-to-people ambassadors trip. Last time I saw her was the day after her wedding in November, and will spend the weekend with her in August on my way back from the west coast to the UK going via Atlanta.

* A series of very emotionally honest emails with the boy triggered by me discovering some old emails from four and a half years ago in the college email changeover and sending a bit to him. Nothing brand new from either of us but sharing stuff neither of us would have done a couple of years ago. This along with some amazing text and a 2 hour skype conversation confirms the fact that to quote something from Glamour magazine this month about long distance relationships "you have to write your own love story". The boy and I know what we have and are OK with it, despite that fact that it doesn't have a name. Also knowing he is looking forward to my trip as much as I am is very reassuring.

* I have an outfit for the boy's sister's wedding, and shoes and the most amazing earrings. I'm not normally this girly but its a fairly important thing for us and I'll be meeting most of his extended family en masse.

* Writing is getting there on the thesis. I'm very much in the get it done and over (my finances really need this to happen) and its progressing.

Friday, 13 June 2008

My life as a flikr mosaic

I really like flikr and need to get myself organised with it and put some of my photos up.

So from Cady.

1. type your answer to each of the questions below into flickr search.
2. using only the first page of results, pick one image.
3. copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into big huge lab’s mosaic maker to create a mosaic of the picture answers.

the questions:
1. what is your first name?
2. what is your favourite food? right now?
3. what high school did you go to?
4. what is your favourite colour?
5. who is your celebrity crush?
6. what is your favourite drink?
7. what is your dream vacation?
8. what is your favourite dessert?
9. what do you want to be when you grow up?
10. what do you love most in life?
11. what is one word that describes you?
12. what is your flickr name

I'm amazed at some of the things that came up, a steam train is not the first thing associated with my secondary/high school.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

What Advanced Degree Should I Get

Pretty accurate seeing as I'm doing Social Sciences, my thesis is more physical science than humanities than I thought it would be when I started out but...

You Should Get a PhD in Liberal Arts (like political science, literature, or philosophy)

You're a great thinker and a true philosopher.

You'd make a talented professor or writer.

Monday, 26 May 2008

Book List

From Maude in Progress .

The top 100 or so books most often marked as “unread” by LibraryThing’s users.
Bold the books you have read, underline the ones you read for school, italicize the ones you started but didn’t finish.

I always finish a book even if it’s a struggle. From this list I don’t see much I had to read for school. Perhaps a reflection of once you get GCSE English at 16 you don’t need to satisfy any other English requirement. For GCSE English we did 1984 (but I’d already read it I was and am a bit of a George Orwell fan), Macbeth and Flowers for Algernon. We did Romeo and Juliet in Year 9 (8th Grade) along with a bunch of 20th Century young adult writing. The Aeneid was the set text for the literature component of my Latin exam so I’ve read it in both English and Latin. I found it bizarre that I did Latin literature and never French. Especially as I did a total of 7 years of French. I have read Camus, Beckett and a couple of other things in French though (when I had time to attempt to stop my French getting rusty).

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
One Hundred Years of Solitude

Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion
Life of Pi : a novel
The Name of the Rose

Don Quixote
Moby Dick
Madame Bovary
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice

Jane Eyre
The Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov

Guns, Germs, and Steel (Although I've read it for teaching my undergraduate tutorials and lecturing about environmental determinism, as opposed to having to read it for a course I was taking)
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler’s Wife
The Iliad

The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway

Great Expectations
American Gods
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran : a memoir in books
Memoirs of a Geisha
Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canterbury Tales
The Historian : a novel

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World
The Fountainhead
Foucault’s Pendulum
The Count of Monte Cristo

A Clockwork Orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King

The Grapes of Wrath

The Poisonwood Bible
Angels & Demons

The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray

Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
To the Lighthouse

Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time


The Prince
The Sound and the Fury

Angela’s Ashes : a memoir
The God of Small Things
A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present
A Confederacy of Dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything

The Unbearable Lightness of Being
The Scarlet Letter (brought and read my first time in the US, I also re-read all the relevant American literature I had at the time including the Buccanneers by Edith Wharton)
Eats, Shoots & Leaves

The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion is this (?)
There is Confusion (?)
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Freakonomics : a rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an inquiry into values
The Aeneid
(in English and Latin, I was a geek at school and did Latin in my lunch hours)
Watership Down
Gravity’s Rainbow
The Hobbit (in Junior School)
In Cold Blood : a true account of a multiple murder and its consequences
White Teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield

Thursday, 22 May 2008

Life happens...

So in the past month I have (in no particular chronological or meaningfulness order)

* Been to a celidh (aka barn dance, square dance). I'd forgotten how much fun they are and we're planning on going to more. Unfortunately I'm going to be in the States when the Proms celidh is :-(

* Marked a whole load of exam papers. Personally, the incentive that worked for me (developed over my increasing teaching load over the last couple of years) is chocolate and sweets after so many papers marked.

* Written more than I thought on my thesis. Still having silly blocks over tiny silly things such as graph drawing but its all part of the process.

* Had some interesting conversations with friends. Why is it when you're single people decide to tell you they're interested even if you've known them for 9, 7 or 5 years (and know you're 'involved' with someone)?

* Been travel advisor to quite a few people on Vienna, New York, Zambia, London, San Francisco, Seattle and Portland. I love travelling and sharing stuff about cool places with people so seriously considered just becoming a travel agent.

* Won a prize at a conference for my presentation. Quite a big thing but my non-uni friends don't seem to get how big a deal it is for me.

* Got shocked at how much petrol prices have risen just in the time that I've had my car (less than six months) a 10% rise. Luckily my car does just under 40 mpg and most of my journeys are at around 50 mph but its a bit shocking especially compared to how much petrol is in the US. I can't really complain about the weak dollar as I'll save far more when I'm there this summer from the exchange rate than suffer due to high oil price double impact.

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Meme for the week

From Semi-Charmed Wife .

Apple juice or orange juice?

Are you a morning or night person?
Night. I can do mornings if necessary but used to have a mug that claimed I was allergic to morni

Which do you prefer, sweet or salty foods?
Generally sweet.

Ninjas or pirates?

What was your favorite childhood television program?
Button Moon.

Are you a collector of anything?

If you could be any animal, what would you be?
A monkey.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

What’s your favorite color?
Blue (and variations of it).

Do you believe in extraterrestrials or life on other planets?
Not sure.

Do you believe in ghosts?

Ever been addicted to a video/computer game? Which one(s)?
Tetris (but it was my final year and a major procrastination tool).

You’re given one million dollars, what do you spend it on?
A house in the UK and one in the USA.

List three of your best personality traits:
1. I'm loyal.
2. .
3. .

List three of your worst personality traits:
1. I don’t cope well with stress.
2. I don't give up soon enough on bad things.
3. I procrastinate easily.

List one thing you wish you could change about yourself:
Having more confidence in myself.

Any tattoos or piercings?
Just pierced ears.tattoos, all before I turned 16. I’ve had two removed with lasers, so I currently have one. No piercings except the ears.

Are you mostly a clean or messy person?
Messy except in the kitchen and bathroom

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?
Near a certain someone. Generic description of place would be near the coast, but with some hills nearby so its not too flat.

If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?
At the moment new places to visit list includes Iceland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Mozambique, various Greek Islands, Mexico, Nicaragu

Name one regret you have:
Staying in not one but two bad relationships too long.

You’re about to walk the green mile, what do you have as your last meal?
Seafood risotto and a really good chocolate mousse/terrine. Accompanied by good wine, with a decent gin and tonic aperitif and followed by good coffee.

Name one thing not many people know about you:
My liking for trash movies and books.

If you HAD to change your name, what would you change it to?
Something a bit more Welsh maybe, although its common I like Jennifer and its diminutie forms. Maybe Bronwyn or Ester.

Do you believe in the afterlife?

List five goals on your life’s to-do list:
1. Finish my PhD.
2. Live in the USA.
3. Get married
4. Visit all the continents.
5. Have a child.

Monday, 21 April 2008

April days

So I have been super busy.

This past week I was at a conference in Vienna, Austria. It has over 8000 participants from around the world and deals with all manner of Geosciences. Last year was my first year there and I spent a good amount of time worrying about missing something useful and getting lost in the conference centre. This year, despite co-covening a session, I was more chilled out.

More people from my institution were at the conference this year than last, I ended (as I thought I might) drinking a lot more than normal. Not having to drive home makes a difference. I also was braver about networking this year and ended up going for dinner a couple of times with people who submitted stuff for our session who work in my general subject area. However, I think I am recovering from stodge overload due to Viennese cooking.

I shared an apartment in a central location with an old office mate. She was a post-doc and now has a lectureship outside of London. We hadn't caught up properly for ages and it was so nice to be able to do so and have an easy going relaxing room mate experience.

So on Saturday we went to Bratislava, Slovakia. It cost 14 euros return took less than an hour and was a good day trip. Bratislava is developing (tell tale signs of investment banks, property management companies, property rental companies) and is a mish mash of architectural eras. Beautiful in a slightly shabby chic way, nice to see a city not sterile and reminded me of Prague 10 years ago.

Apart from that I had a PhD progress meeting (a college 6 monthly requirement). They depress me preparing for them but the meetings make me feel more optimistic. My supervisors tell me I'm too much of a perfectionist and I'm not far off.

Which is a good thing as I've got a ticket to the USA booked. I LOVE planning trips abroad. I'm going to the boy's sister's wedding in Philly, staying with him and his housemates in LA, then flying back via Atlanta to stay with my friends whose wedding I went to in November. We are either taking the plane from Philly to LA or the train. Travelling together is on our to do lists (long story about our whole involvement deserves its own, probably multiple, post). I jokingly suggested doing some this trip by train. This would involve taking a train overnight from Philly to New Orleans, stay overnight in NO then take another train to LA spending two nights on the train. We would get sleeper accommodation incl food and drinks and it would be a good way to catch up properly. But the boy has started a new job so is about to start negotiating time off so we'll see.

Sunday, 6 April 2008

Cool Meme

From several people ( ProfGrrrl , Dr Medusa , Anastasia amongst others)


1. Go to

2. Type in your answer to the question in the “search” box.

3. Use only the first page.

4. Insert the picture into your Blog.

1. What is your relationship status?


2. What is your current mood?

Lonesome Chair

3. Who is your Favorite Band/Artist?

kate rusby

4. What is your favourite movie?

before sunrise

5. What kind of pet do you have?


6. Where do you live?

Typical Steerer's eyevies

7. Where do you work?

Kings college church

8. What do you look like? (Apparently)

Kate Winslet my fav. actress

9. What do you drive?

Renault F1 and Clio in Mirror on Roof

10. What did you do last night?


11. What is your Favorite TV Show?

Life on Mars

12. Describe yourself:


13. What are you doing today?

14. What is your name?

Geog Quiz

15. What is your favourite candy?


16. What is your favorite drink?

iced tea

Friday, 28 March 2008

A dress and memories

I was unpacking some things that had been in my Mum's storage before she moved house. Amongst them were some clothes, in particular my dressy dresses, the ones I wear for formal dinners (black tie) and more dressy weddings.

And I came across it. A dress that brings back so many memories from when it was purchased to every time I wore it, a dress that so has its own personality. Normally I'm not like this with clothes, I abhor clothes shopping unless I'm in the mood (and weirdly if I'm in the US, perhaps as I suddenly become 2 sizes smaller and tops are long enough).

So I brought this dress at what is now Topshops flagship Oxford Street store in June 1997. I'd been to an open day at the college in London where I would start my undergraduate career in Chemistry (I switched to Geography somewhere else after two years but thats another story). After looking around the place and deciding that it was really where I wanted to go (above Oxford or Cambridge) I decided to go shopping for a dress for the upcoming sixth form party.

In the basement where there were concessions for other small designers. I found it, a floor length, pretty much backless dress, that clung in the right places, fairly high necked and strapless, with a slit up the back so you can walk. Basically the first dress I brought that flaunted my femininity but not too much that I was out of my comfort zone. It was reasonably priced and with a student discount under thirty pounds (my maximum budget). I remember showing the dress to friends when I got back home and them being slightly shocked, it was me but not expected.

I wore the dress to multiple compliments, for me the geek of the year this was unusual. I think I enjoyed challenging people's opinions of me. I got a kiss from the boy I liked (another chapter in our long drawn out relationship) and got scared. I got asked whether I was engaged to a good friend of mine that night, something that shocked my and my supposed fiance so much we laughed for about five minutes. (He was the first of my friends from home to get married though). I had an amazing night at that sixth form party, partially because it was after a summer concert at the local theatre in which I had played in several groups, had a couple of solos go well and sing in the chamber choir finale. Going from the natural post-concert high to a party meant everyone thought we'd been drinking already.

I wore the dress to a post-production party a couple of weeks later. The english class had adapted "Room with a View". I had ended up getting involved with stage crew, partially to manage a good friend who is a designer not a stage management person. We thought we invented the idea of a prop table! It may have played a part in my most short lived dating episode (dating someone to make someone else jealous, very silly and not worth it, particularly when the object of your desire is doing the same thing!).

I wore the dress to a couple of freshers balls (along with my very plain black dress, which has a history associated with it). It became my clubbing dress in London being worn to Turnmills (now sadly closed), Ministry of Sound, Fabric, Heaven amongst other places (it shocked my most recent ex that I once was into the club scene). I wore the dress to my new college freshers event two years after my first experience of starting a degree course.

I hadn't worn the dress in years. So when I found it I wondered did it still fit. My weight went up when I first started university and has fluctuated since. However, I knew from another dinner dress I'm about the same size as I was as a 17 year old (I don't know how but I'm not complaining). The dress still fits, it still makes me feel good and I would feel fine wearing it on a night out. Not to a formal dinner but for something else.

Normally my memories are so lucid when associated with place and landscape (I'm a geographer it figures), this is one of the few pieces of clothing that I can remember vividly the experiences each time I wore it.

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Evidence of Snow (in a very British obsession with the weather)

So a couple of images (from my phone so not fantastic). One from my bedroom window. We had around an inch of snow. Bizarrely my boots (fabulous for teaching in) were the safest thing I could find to walk to church in. I forgot about my walking boots, but it was early in the morning. Its tried to snow a couple of times today and we've had some hail.

Sunday, 23 March 2008


I woke up this morning to see abiout 3 cm of snow on the ground. This is not normal, neither the amount or presence of snow or the timing.

Yes, Easter is early this year but snow in late March is not usual.

Dad's is located in a place that is so central and away from the coast that moisture has run out by the time it reaches here whether the front comes from the East or the West.

It was fun walking to church this morning in the snow (the last time I did this was when it snowed on Christmas Eve a while ago) and made decorating the cross with spring flowers seem that bit more special.

Sunday Scribblings: I just don't get it

I Just Don't Get It.

Something that slightly bugs me is the inability of some of my long time friends in London to get the fact I actually teach and its not a minor thing. I've taught more than most grad students do here as my old advisor left at quite short notice so I was on a p/t teaching contract (the year I was 1.5 people: p/t RA, p/t lecturer and p/t PhD student). Some people don't seem to get that I can't go on holiday as I have to teach on a Monday afternoon and you can't just move a 2 hour lecture for 60 students easily. Especially when the 10 week course in a very short term is taught by 4 people who have agonised over the order of lectures. It must be said these are the same people who didn't really get the fact I had a proper job with an office with my name on the door. Perhaps because they've known me since I was an undergraduate.

On the other hand people who I have know since 2001 (as opposed to 1998). who met me in a context where I was employed to teach (albeit music to 8-17 year olds) don't seem to have an issue with it. Perhaps because they're mainly american and therefore PhD students teaching is the most normal thing in the world.

K posted a while ago about how being a grad student isn't a formal job but it is and people don't get it. Yes, you set your own hours (convenient when friends from far away are in town) but this means that you work when others don't so calling at any time of the day may interrupt one day and not another.

Rant over...

Friday, 21 March 2008

Five years

A couple of days ago was the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq.

I remember watching the situation unfold on tv comparing it to images and reporting in the first Gulf War. The contrast was amazing, the impact of embedded reporters, my greater knowledge of the region (I'd taken a course of territorial disputes the previous year in amongst the other Asia and Africa centred course of my degree). In the first gulf war the son of the village librarian served in the army and wrote letters back to his old primary school which were read out in assembly. It provided an interesting insight to a 10 year old. Compared to a 22 year old at a college which was the centre of the student stop the war movement (people slept in college nights before big marches). I knew it was inevitable but wished there was another way. In the back of my mind was that if it turned into another Vietnam quickly my american male friends were liable for the draft. I knew really that it wouldn't happen, and that if it would they would escape it like their fathers and uncles had (enter seminary, rabbi school, medical school abroad) but it was scary. My feelings about whether the war was and is justified are very separate from my concern for people are serving in theatre and their families, who deserve our support and respect no matter what our morals say about the situation.

Saturday, 8 March 2008

Five things this week

This week has been mixed to say the least.

1. The RAC (a British equivalent of the AAA) are very efficient in coming out quickly and fixing ill tyres. Particularly useful when you are driving to the station to take the train into London to give your last lecture of the year. I made it with 20 minutes to spare (to the amazement of the wonderful department admin staff). If I had been late it wouldn't have been too bad. I work on the primary school adage that a child can only concentrate for as many minutes as they are old. Therefore with undergrads I work my lectures in 20 minutes chunks and Monday's lecture was on my field of study complete with cool 20 min video (that is also partly on YouTube). But all panic re-arranging of the lecture was needless. However, I did lecture drinking a cup of tea for the first 15 minutes.

2. There are lots more academic blogs out there than I originally knew about. This week I've been discovering good ones by females in academia which is cool and nice to know I'm not the only one struggling with writing.

3. I have two chapters overdue to my supervisors. They're nearly done and I'm aiming to have them in their inboxes by the end of next week. The large carrot is that once they're not my responsibility (albeit temporarily) I can book my flight to the US for July/August to see the boy (a family wedding of his is a very convenient excuse).

4. I finally feel happy with the new office setup. I used to have my office space due to my job (part-time PhDs don't get desks but part time RAs do). We moved into a new building about 2 years ago into a room for 12 (but there were generally only about 6 of us in). When I changed from p/t to f/t there was a re-arrangement of rooms and the old researchers room became the final year PhD room so everyone moved around me. I loved being with the RAs because of the people but they've all left (bar one) either to permanent lectureships or back to home countries. I've had some amazing room mates who have helped my PhD. The RAs were chatty, final year PhDs not at all (an old resident of the room called it deathly silent when she came to visit me). After 4 years of a very productive but conversational environment its taken some getting used to. However, the new residents are a bit more chatty (I suppose its tough coming from a room for about 35) and we've all got used to each other. I adore my next door neighbour we've got on well since we started together, just never got to talk much and there is a tea rota in place.

5. Three people I know had interviews on the same day this week. All went well but they're all waiting to hear. Fingers crossed as they all really need/want to move.

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Coffee, coffee, coffee

I was surveying the cupboards for coffee this morning and had forgotten I had such an interesting collection.

I've just finished my jar of fairtrade Kenyan medium roast so am onto using cafetiere (french press in USA) coffee. I do have an expresso machine but its currently in a cupboard so it was too much hassle to get it out, set it up. However, I do have some very nice Lavazza Italian expresso for it.

So I ended up drinking Australian coffee (yes, Australian) that my sister and Dad brought back from the Whitsunday Islands on their trip there for Dad's Jim'll Fix It*.

I rediscovered where my Zambian coffee had gone (back of a cupboard behind hot chocolate powder). I have three types, one brought direct from the coffee plantation and two that were grown within a couple of hours from the capital and sold in the supermarket. These range from medium to very strong and need a bit of extra brewing. I did my work/thesis research in Zambia so its nice to have coffee that I know where it comes from and is ethical. As an aside instant in Zambia, much like the rest of Southern Africa generally contains chicory and therefore is no effective at 7am when it needs to wake you up. Therefore, I got into a bad habit of visiting one of the Greek bakeries on my way into meetings to pick up a coffee (and more often than not a pastry too). Seeing as I was in charge of buying drink and biscuits for group research meetings there, I made sure there was decent coffee (generally from Egypt for some reason).

The best airline coffee I have ever had was on Ethiopian Airlines, really smooth not as strong as I thought it was going to be, and amazing service.

I also have Taylors of Harrogate variations, this is a Yorkshire company that has been fairtrade for years (before it became trendy). One of them is half caffeinated and half de-caf so perfect for late night drinking.

I refuse (at home at least) not to drink coffee that is fairtrade. I've known about fairtrade since my childhood, mainly due to Traidcraft at Church. I did my undergrad at a place that charged less for fairtrade coffee and tea (before they got rid of the non-fairtrade stuff altogther). My current university is designated fairtrade. I've just finished lecturing about development in the global south and touched on trade issues. I know its become the trendy thing now but its a small thing to do and per cup the price difference is so minimal.

And I'd never buy or willingly drink Nescafe. Just don't get me started (baby milk, rowntrees, blue smarties, kit kats etc).

As for tea, I work near the original Twinings tea shop in London. As its cheaper and has a wider range (and lovely staff) I go there to buy my tea. When I buy my usual stuff (earl or lady grey, ceylon, ceylon orange pekoe i.e. anything that doesn't require milk) I always pick up a sample tea bag for around 25p to see whats around (rhubarb and roibuis anyone?).

Seeing as I'm living on my savings and a bit of teaching this year. I've cut down on my coffee shop habit. However, I've always gone to the college place (where its cheap but has few opening hours) or Neros (voted the best coffee of the cafes here). I dislike Starbucks not only due to some of their business practices but their coffee is not good and overpriced.

* "Jim'll Fix It" was a TV programme in the UK where people wrote in asking for Jimmy Savile to fix it so they could do certain activities. My Dad's company after you've worked there for 25 years gives you £10 000 (just under $20 000) and 6 weeks extra holiday for two years. Therefore its got the nickname of the Jim'll Fix It. If you have no desire to take up the extra holiday (he gets over 6 weeks per year anyway, the joys of UK/EU employment law) you can retire 6 months early (i.e. at 59.5 instead of 60, everyone can retire at 60 there too). So he took my sister to Australia and New Zealand and he and I went to the USA last summer (plenty of posting material in that).

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Mothering Sunday

Today is Mothering Sunday in the UK. It varies with Easter so is very early this year. This also meant that it falls a day before my Grandmother's birthday and the weekend my Mum moved into her new home. This meant that my sister and I cooked a meal for them at my Mum's new place. Between watercress soup (cooked last night while watching Sense and Sensibility), garlic and rosemary lamb and birthday cake accompanied with rose Cava we were all very full. Going to church and still getting a posy of flowers to take home for my Mum reminded me of all the years I've done that (the only year I got given a posy as a Mother figure I was still at school teaching Sunday School!).

This past year I've gained a new appreciation for my Mum. She always is very insightful into my actions, pre-empting things that haven't really crossed my brain yet. When it comes to relationships with the opposite sex we're even more alike. During my break-up she was amazing and is totally supportive of me moving abroad. Although she isn't one for traveling she's said that if one of her daughters moves abroad she'd visit them. So if all goes to plan in a couple of years she'll be visiting the west coast of the USA.

I thought it would be weird with my parents living apart (they've been separated for nearly 2 years now but were living in the same house until it was sold). While she's been living at Grandma's we've gone out for coffee, cocktails, desert and the cinema far more than we would have otherwise. I think its marked the transition phase more than anything else (despite me not living at home in a under 18 sense for a long time).

I admire my Mum for going back to college and doing the equivalent of a first year of a degree and that she wants to complete it when she retires. Mum's side of the family is full of strong women, its a matriarchal Welsh clan. I was lucky enough to know my great-grandmother and there are some treasured photos of four generations of us together. My Grandma is very strong willed, she refuses to accept her age (but grudgingly obliges in cases such as last month when she was knocked over by a Great Dane).

I feel very privileged to have Mum and Grandma as my maternal role models. They're not perfect but more and more I see how they have shaped the person I am today, and the person I want to be. Now I'm happy when people say they can definitely tell we're related and I hope I can have a valuable relationship with any future children I have.

Saturday, 1 March 2008

7 things

So stealing an idea from the bluefish . Seven things about this week.

1. I survived an earthquake. I have now been in an earthquake larger than one my friends who live in Los Angeles have experienced. Details from the USGS .

2. I'm not on a small island in the Bristol Channel with lots of people I know. I have been the past two years, but couldn't go this year as I have to teach on Monday. This is not as bad as I thought it was going to be. I'm not sure how I could deal with certain people, but its nice to get messages saying I'm going to be missed. But I am missing a pirate themed fourth birthday party:-(.

3. My Mum has moved into her new house. Its very nice but needs some wall colours toning down. Hot pink and lavender bedroom anyone?

4. Errors are fun. This is what I keep telling myself while considering the quantitative errors for all of my PhD thesis work. One of my supervisors is obsessed with errors so they have to be spot on, but it means that I will be OK on them for my viva.

5. My college chapel is still an oasis of calm in the madness (especially in London). On a tough day its so good to stop in, pause, reflect and pray. Its also lovely to hear the choir and organ practice drift up into the department and our office.

6. Friends, even if on the other side of the world are an amazing blessing and support. Its actually quite useful to have people to talk to when you're out of sync with the timezone you're in.

7. In line with point 6 (and a previous post this week). The internet, instant messaging, email and online voice programmes are such a boon when it comes to keeping up friendships.

Leap year post

So taking the meme idea from Revd Dr Mom.

But this seems to be more a general recollection of that time in my life. Two leap years sets takes me back to school.

29 February 2004: First year of my part-time job/part-time PhD. Struggling to do PhD work outside of my classes apart from stuff associated with work. Relationship wise I was single, having dated a couple of guys in quick succession in late 2003/early 2004. This was mainly to get over the boy not wanting a long distance relationship, it didn't really work. This period of time was when I was at my most promiscuous. Not something I'm particularly proud of, and not necessarily would do the same again, but don't totally regret it.

29 February 2000: This was when I was starting to realise my first undergrad degree really wasn't for me. If it was a week day I would have spent it in lab, playing with chemicals. I was with my first long term boyfriend (who by the end of the year I would no longer be with).

29 February 1996: GCSE year at school which means I was hanging out with some unhealthy relationships, but saved by Saturday morning music school friends. We either had just or were about to compete in the National Festival of Music for Youth regionals in concert band. In this year we actually got through to the finals in the Royal Festival Hall in London. We were writing our Records of Achievement, which bizarrely I'm following my 16 year old aspirations (on a varied timeline).

29 February 1992: School, first year of secondary school. Not much was happening, I was finding my feet a bit.

29 February 1988: This would be my first year at junior school, I was probably off sick at home. That school year I spent as much time off school as in, which may have been a good thing as I was bored out of my brain. That year I had chicken pox, suspected German Measles and multiple chest infections. I brought chicken pox home and it spread to Gillian and my poor Mum, who hadn't had it before. Dad had to stay home from work to look after us all.

29 February 1984: I was at playschool. I think we had snow around this period of time looking at pictures of me and friends (who I am still friends with now) in family photo albums.

29 February 1980: Mum was 6 months pregnant with me!

Thursday, 28 February 2008

Things I've discovered this past week

So a quick review of things I've discovered this week.

(1) The reasons that certain people have not been replying to my emails. Yes you may be now with my ex, but I split up with him. To be honest you're welcome to him.
(2) That I can give a lecture that I have spent not as much time on as I should have, and get away with it. Not an experience I'd willingly repeat, but good to know.
(3) That my house can survive a 5.2 earthquake
(4) That it is easy to initially think a truck had crashed into the house, at the start of an earthquake (despite the fact that there is no probable cause for a truck to be within 50 m of the house).
(5) That despite knowing the theory of what to do in an earthquake I actually stayed on the sofa and thought cool. I'm hoping that if I was somewhere that earthquakes are potentially larger (e.g. LA) I'd do the right thing (drop to the ground/find a doorway or desk).
(6) My undergraduate institution continues to produce a good newsletter, my Mum liked the pretty picture on the front (a 16th Century Indian print).
(7) Not so much discovered, but re-affirmed the joys of Skype.
(8) I am more like my parents than I would have liked to admit 5 years ago.

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Moving on, my friends and other animals

So I split up with a long-term boyfriend (3 years) nearly 3 months ago. We met when he joined a society I've been part of since I was an undergrad. As a consequence a lot of my friends became his as well, in one case a good friend of mine became his best friend. So despite the fact that aforementioned personage had been saying to my ex for nearly a year we should split up this person now ignores me totally. OK, so he's being immature and to be honest it shows his true colours. What galls me more is that his girlfriend who I've had a on-off really close friendship with appears to be ignoring me when he's around and not online etc. I went to the pub with this group of people this week and discovered that my ex appears to be seeing someone I had confided in a lot. In no way am I bothered about them seeing each other (she's welcome to him) more that it explains why she hadn't responded to any of my emails. So talking to a certain someone about this tonight, he said in a "divorce" stuff like this always happens and I'm being mature about it. I'm being a lot more mature about it now than a couple of years ago but I suppose I'm galled by the fact that these people who I thought were good friends aren't. All I can say is that I'm very glad that I have a support network outside the society I met the ex at. Even if a large proportion of it is not on the same continent, thank goodness for the internet, IM, skype and email.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Some of the reasons I should maybe relocate to the USA

So when I was 16 we had to set out our plans for the rest of our lives in what they called our "Record of Achievment". Mine went something like get a degree, do a PhD, go and do a post-doc in the USA then decide what to do Well with a changing of degree subject, university and doing a part-time PhD I'm at the same point I would have been if I had gone along with the original plan (formulated by a naive 15 year old who had some other weird ideas, all that are substance for other posts).

In 2001 having switched I taught Summer Camp in the USA, met some amazing people who continue to have a huge impact on my life. I returned in 2003 (post degree holiday), 2006 (for work), 2007 (a: holiday with Dad post job, b: friend from camp's wedding) and each time I go to the USA it doesn't have the sense of other that places outside the UK have to me (including the country in Southern Africa where I've spent over 9 months for my thesis research).

So this week it seems I've spoken more to my friends in the USA than here. Partially because of working late and the joys of instant messaging or skype and email. And I mean really talking, helping me figure out stuff and being supportive in the crappy week I've had. Coming out of a long-term relationship that I really thought was the job really made me evaluate what I wanted and working and living in the USA for a bit is really on the cards. The factor of a potential amazing relationhip is a push/pull factor, but not the only one which makes the pressure slightly less (and thats a whole other set of posts).

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

First Post

So I figure that seeing as I read so many blogs I should have one of my own. I guess that if I can write for my thesis I can write here, lets see if I manage to keep it up.