Sláinte mhath!

and a happy new year! I hope 2008 is a great year for everyone, with more ups than downs.

I had a good christmas, although was ill with tonsilitis, my cousin got taken into hospital then kicked out on christmas day and the family was rowing about it as him mum and dad buggered off to leave him to drink on christmas eve, and came out in spots after being allergic to medicine they gave me, fell out with my mum, but in the end it was all good and I love my family to bits.

Had macaroni cheese, chips and then a tin of roses at my auntie belle’s (shes about 80) and she asked me questions about my boyfriend:
– what job does he have? is it well paid?
– does he go down the pub?
– does he eat real food like pies?
– how tall is he?
– is he funny?
– does he have a middlesbrough accent?

then after showing them a photos in which he is wearing a cap
– does he have a burberry scarf?
– does he know that middlesbrough is the worst place to live in the UK?
– what is in his hair? paint? (my boyfriend has black hair with white patches in it. this explains his nicknames of badger, PAP (prematurely aging pom, although i tell him in gaelic pap means tit) and highlights, the latter he tells me is because when you watch him play cricket you’re already watching the highlights.

just sent an email to the professors at work:
Dear Jane, Miltos, Robert and Hugh,

I know we have a meeting coming up some time soon so I wanted to write to you before then to let you know what the situation is, what I’ve been thinking about and what can be done to move forward.

I received more sequencing results before Christmas and I still haven’t cloned the ARP homologue from Ceratopteris. At the moment I just feel very disheartened, disappointed and frustrated. It’s not just the cloning: I feel it’s almost every part of my project that isn’t really going anywhere. Of course PhDs aren’t straightforward and there will be successes and failures but I feel like for almost two and a half years I haven’t had any data to really analyse, further questions to ask, and one of the outcomes of all this is that I haven’t really felt challenged or excited during my PhD. The challenge and excitement of data analysis and further questioning is something that I really want; I can work hard and I will work really hard if it reaps rewards.

I chose to do a PhD because I like science. I like molecular biology, genetics and testing hypotheses. However, my project is becoming one of characterising the appearance of leaves and meristems and this is another reason I am not enjoying my work at the moment as I find science lacking the aspects I enjoy unfulfilling.

So, the lack of progress and the change in direction of my project means that at the moment my heart isn’t in it. I am going to Australia for 2 weeks from the 25th January. Jane, you said I would not be able to continue with my PhD if I went to Australia, so I don’t really know what to think or do at the moment. All I know is that I don’t want to quit; I do like science but I am not enjoying coming to work.

Thus I’m trying to decide what the next step should be and would appreciate your thoughts and advice. I would like to know if it’s possible to write up my work for a Masters degree. Or perhaps another option is changing my project and therefore lab entirely. Any other ideas or opinions you have I would really like to hear.

I hope we can have a meeting in the new year to discuss this. Thank you for all your help and support academically and with problems not just at the bench.

Yours sincerely,


I didnt say anything about the fact i also dont like work because jane does my head in, because ultimately she decides whether to kick me out or let me do masters and whether to pay me, maybe I should have said something, i dont know.

anyways I hope 2008 is better than 2007, onwards and upwards. All that matters is being happy and all the makes you happy is good family and friends around you, really.

Health and happiness to all of you and your friends and family!
Sláinte mhath!



3 thoughts on “Sláinte mhath!

  1. Ooer. Let’s sit back and wait and see what they say.
    Sorry you too were ill over Xmas but here’s to 2008. It’s been hot so far…..

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