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04 August 2015

July 2015

So, four days late. Did anyone notice? I have my excuses - work has been super busy, life outside of work has been busy, lots happened over the weekend, the weather sucks and I've been feeling ill. Time for bed nice and early soon, see if that helps (though it's unlikely to help with the bad weather). You know what's worse than having to hang all the washing inside to dry? When you then go and spill juice on the nearly dry washing and have to go wash it all over again!

So what as been happening to keep me so busy you ask? Well it seems sort of hard to remember July right now, I'm pretty tired. Let's see, I'll work backwards from last week ... I have started job hunting again, but this time with the knowledge that when my contract ends there'll almost certainly be another one waiting for me. Yet I'll job hunt anyway, because maybe an opportunity to take a step up will come along. Plus Nathan started a new job and I can't have him catching up to me in the wage department - I do have a PhD after all. At work things have been busy because the meetings that I was hired to coordinate all happened in the first three weeks. So last week was nice and quiet but the three before that were hectic, with longer days than I usually work, long hours spent setting up meeting rooms, packing down meeting rooms, guarding the catering (and then helping eat it at least) and running around on all sorts of silly errands. I'm glad it's all over. Now I have to try and get all of our assessment panel members paid, but we're having issues with our financial processes so it's slow going. And when the decisions are made about what research is going to be funded, my job will be to help get the contracts all arranged. So that will be new for me, hopefully it will be interesting.

Outside of work I have been struggling to keep up with my tutoring, with the long days I have been working. We have been doing somewhat lazy lessons, making and colouring in our own periodic table. Now back to physics, but my being a biologist leaves me at a bit of a loss to answer all her questions. We did take a weekend trip to the observatory though, that was pretty cool. Got to look through the big telescope - I have to say, Saturn was not what I expected. I guess I expected to see something that looked a bit more like the pictures you can see on the internet, but then they are probably from fancy orbiting telescopes or something. Through your usual telescope Saturn looks like a tiny stamp or cutout, of a planet with a ring around it glowing white on a black background. So a bit underwhelming.

And despite a heavy workload this month I have actually had a bit of a social life. Nathan's new job means more nights home, even on the weekend, so I made him go ice skating with me at the temporary rink they put up on the waterfront in winter here. It was fun but a small rink and so crowded, even at 9 pm. Full of kids with those frames to push on the ice so they don't fall down - they definitely shouldn't offer those, how can anyone skate while trying to avoid a traffic jam of plastic frames supporting children? This rink also had an ice-slide alongside it, that you went down on inflatable rings. It didn't look very high but for me it was still scary and I screamed a bit on the way down. All five times. It was more fun than skating on a crowded rink.

Then to keep the skating theme going, I went rollerskating for a friend's birthday. She saw 'roller disco' and assumed it would be for adults (in Europe they refer to nightclubs as discos so I can understand her confusion). So there the four of us were, at an event definitely aimed at children. There is a roller rink in one of the suburbs that does lessons and fitness classes and stuff, and sometimes opens up on a Friday night for a 'disco', for just a gold coin donation. It turns out it's not just roller skates either, there were roller blades and kids on scooters, and even one small child on a little bike. Roller blades are clearly the most popular so there were none of those in our sizes, we had to choose roller skates. Which none of us had used before. It is sort of the same, but entirely different way of balancing, and turning and stopping. So in an hour of roller skating, I knocked two children over. Luckily neither cried, but the first had a scooter and I landed on it - the handle jabbed me right in the belly and it hurt! There's even a little bruise. After an hour we were definitely ready to leave, and the few other grown ups on the rink turned out to work there, and be the MCs and DJ, who started to get the kids to try and focus on playing games like freezing when the music stopped. It was difficult both because it is hard to stop, and most of the kids weren't much interested in the game. We definitely had to leave before another started.

So it's my bedtime now, I guess I'll have to regale you with stories about the dog another time. See you all soon I reckon.