Sunday, 5 October 2008

Smeagol is free!

It's been a long old time since I've written one of these. To tell the truth I've been largely concentrating on getting my thesis done. Some may not believe it, but I think worked darned hard at this, even if it has taken me 12 months longer than expected. I started writing this as my printer was throwing hate filled vibes at me for making it print 187 pages of concentrated waffle, comprising 29,937 words, a full 9.937 more than you're meant to write. Ah well, what the hell say I.

Even though it was a bit anti-climactic to be sat here typing up my first blog post for ages while my printer was throwing varying amounts of ink at a page, killing time until it finished and I went to throw the sum total of three years work at some poor so-and so who then had to bind it. I did, however have iTunes blaring out music at a volume that they could probably hear at the end of the street (Mark isn't the only one with a taste for loud music!), and I developed an 'I'm finished' dance that I unleashed this weekend at Claire's blessing reception. It's why my knee is currently hurting a lot.

While I was printing I was thinking about the amount of sweat and late nights I've had to throw at my thesis. It's possible that I could have finished it earlier, but it wasn't to be. I don't regret having taken this long; I've had a good time working on this thing. I must confess a certain level of boredom crept in around the 5th re-read, but there you go. The thing on my mind now is what's next?

The answer to that is that I'm not sure. I'm planning on working for a while to fund some travel, and to fund exploration of possibilities. Long term I'd like to remain in academia. I enjoy the learning environment, and I think I could teach reasonably well (at least I could talk lots, I'm good at that). However where I go next is still clouded. I have a dream involving Vancouver and the Rockies, and I'm going to look into making that happen. But for the immediate future, there are several things that need to happen (including finding a job) and these will probably become my focus for the next few weeks.

I do have to admit that this isn't the end for this thesis. I've still got to defend it (Viva) and I haven't got a clue when that'll happen. I'll then have to re-write (again!) some elements before I can (hopefully!) add more letters to my name. I'll take orders for bound copies of my thesis starting at £100, and for an extra £50 I'll even sign it! (That's not serious by the way...). There are a couple of papers in the works, which I'm hoping to finish in the near future, so I'll be more than busy for the next few weeks.

I suppose the only thing left is to say thanks to all those involved. I initially only put those with direct relevance to my project into my acknowledgements, but I mentioned it to Mark and he made a good point. Even though the people I work with rarely saw me, they all had a hand in helping me not go (more) insane over the last three years. So thanks to all of you from Portsmouth Uni, and Bowlplex. You all know who you are.

To finish, two bits of good news!

  1. It seems that Becky has both a blog, and has been lined up for an important transplant. Huzzah to both, but primarily the latter!
  2. Congratulations to Claire and James whose blessing we attended. They got married in Grenada (mutter, mutter) but threw a lavish party for the rest of us who couldn't make it. Much fun was had by all, and hopefully it's an omen for their future.


Anyway, back to relaxing, and waiting for a job offer!