Friday, 26 February 2016

Getting Ill

It is a well-known fact that I am almost never ill. The Wardens tend to sail through winter without so much as a sniffle. But this week has thrown all that. I've spent a not so jolly week fighting a rather yucky virus and am still snuggled under my blanket as I type. It means that everything has been rather knocked off course which is somewhat frustrating for me - I am a schedule/planner type person.

So, what else have we been up to? Well, D started his new job which involves a lot more commuting too and from London. But so far, so good. I headed up to Edinburgh to give a talk at my alma mater. It was a rather peculiar experience actually (being back at a research series I used to attend), but the talk went well and I had a super chat with a really sparky bunch of PhD students. The whole weekend was rather derailed as the Edinburgh clan was all sick. But it did mean I stayed over with Granny which was just lovely. And I got to potter around the city, eat at Valvona and Crolla, have coffee with one of the world's most wonderful ladies and work along the seafront.

After a rather chaotic January, the aim has been a quiet February of taking stock and re-energising. As it happens my body appears to have forced me to stop for a while! All the January projects are now signed off (so expect many pages of proofs to arrive in my inbox soon!) and the new Spring projects have begun. Unusually for me I am really just focusing on two main projects until we head off to Australia - an article for a journal that I am editing (don't worry, I promise to get someone to properly peer review it!) and a book chapter on Drama in the 1930s. Both involve me going back to the theatre of the between-wars period, and I'm really enjoying getting reacquainted with Auden/Isherwood and the vibrant energies of the Workers' Theatre Movement. On top of these, I seem to have rather a backlog of administrative bits and pieces - hundreds of forms to fill in etc. It is one of the perils of starting at a new institution - you have to catch up first!

We are about half way through the Spring term now, but we have a short break next week for Enhancement Week (reading week by any other name), then two more teaching weeks before a three week Easter break. It is rather nice to be entering this fragmented phase.

Apart from work things (and getting ill) I have largely been spending time watching the Six Nations, reading Dostoevsky (which I am really into now!) and spring cleaning. At this time of year I like to have a proper clear out and I'm about halfway through this task now. I've been reading a lot about the benefits of minimalism (something that is very close to my heart) and systems (something I am just exploring) and have been inspired by both.

Anyways, Friday evening has arrived and I'm looking forward to a peaceful evening of cheering on Wales and eating hummus. Hoping that the next time I write a post I won't have a cough anymore.

Wishing you a beautiful, fun-filled weekend