A Post Long in the Making

27 06 2011

First of all, sorry for taking so long to update you all (although some of you are certainly happy cos you don’t have to read what I write). But I have been quite busy and been up to so many things, I had to check my calendar to see what I got up to. First up was a visit to Belfast to meet my supervisor there. This was the third time I met him, though I have been in contact with him regularly via email. So On Wednesday 15th May I made my way up to Belfast, to be there ready for the meeting next morning at 9am. I planned the trip to allow me some time to go around Belfast on the Wednesday, and luckily had some gorgeous weather allowing me to wander around the city and take in some sights. Thursday was a day at the University. I will write more on that in myresearch blog in the coming days however, as I do not want to bore you about my research here.

On Friday, I then woke up as usual ready for my day at Uni. However I received a special call from Bernard asking me about my plans for the weekend. He does not normally call, but Oh well, I thought it was a nice thing. However before saying goodbye he asked me whether I was able to pick him up from the airport that night, and that is when the rollercoaster began. YIPPIE!…he decided to come on a surprise visit. That meant that I first had to organise my room a bit, and keep up with the Uni stuff. That evening I had a birthday party for one of the girls from the School of Biotechnology, Markella. I headed to her birthday party, but then had to leave early to go pick up Bernard from the airport at around midnight. Fortunately, Ross offered to drive me to the airport to pick Bernard up, which made things much easier, since buses stop running at this time (thank you Ross). We arrived a bit late to pick up Bernard (though it was because the plane landed very early), and then headed home.

The weekend was a packed weekend. We went shopping, visited the Street Performers World championship in Dublin (great event, really enjoyed it, even though it rained), went to the Jameson Distillery Tour (where we got selected to get a whiskey tasting…though at 12 noon it might not have been the brightest idea, but it was great fun), went to Monika’s for the evening where she told us all about her trip to China for a conference and Zahra and Ali showed us the photos from their trip to Malta and Italy. Then Monday, I made my way to the lab, since I had a couple of things I had to do after my visit to Belfast and so on, whilst Bernard entertained himself in the city centre. That evening, a good friend of mine, Marco, was visiting Dublin and DCU, with a group of 9 other Maltese for a course on Science education and inclusion, organised by AcrossLimits from Malta and DCU partners. So that evening, Bernard and myself joined the group for dinner at the city centre.

Tuesday morning, was time for Bernard to leave 😦 :(. However since Marco et al were in Dublin, I ended up going out to dinner with them most nights. The whole group was a great lot. I really enjoyed myself with them and we really had a great time. I hope they did not mind myself butting in to all their evening activities, but oh well, they seemed to be OK about it. It was a good craic as they say in Ireland. The group finally left on Friday afternoon (Boohoo, but thank you Marco for the goodies weeeeee, and Bernard too 🙂 ).

The weekend was here again in the blink of an eye. Oh I forgot, I went to a softball game on Wednesday, and we WON!!!!…I did some good plays, and some horrible ones as well, but Oh Well. I was pretty tired when the weekend arrived, but first up was a farewell party for Ilaria, a girl from Italy who was doing her masters at DCU. I was pretty exhausted, but I made it to her house and stayed for a bit, before going home to flop into bed and sleep a long long sleep.

The weekend was pretty relaxed. On Saturday I went to IKEA with Monika. Then Sunday I went to softball training and to mass. Then it was back to another week. Sorry for a long post, but I tried to include everything in it. Sorry for the delay, but I was quite busy, and I needed a whole weekend to get my energy back up to write it. Will try to write more regularly, and keep the posts shorter from now on 🙂

My First Visitor…Day 3

26 10 2010

Day 3 came about. Another sunny day. But today was certainly not as cold as the day before. Today we again made our way to the centre of town, where we went on the Free Walking Tour organised to Sandemans New Europe. We were informed that due to the Dublin Marathon, parts of the city would be closed off, so we would have an abridged version.

I had already been on the walking tour before on my first visit to Dublin with my mum to visit the University. The tour took pretty much the same route as the last time, but at the end it was shortened. Instead he took us to the Irish Famine memorial and he discussed aspects of this famine.

At this point we made our way to the bus stop as we had another important stop…IKEA. We made our way to IKEA on the bus, and passed through Ballymun. Ballymun is an area in Dublin, not far from where I am living, about which I have heard a lot. Basically that I should avoid going there. The place is decidedly scary, and I would not want to go there ever :S .

We made it to IKEA and it was open :). It was full of people. First stop was the IKEA restaurant, where I had some Swedish meat balls and Bernard had rice with some sauce. For dessert I had carrot and walnut cake and Bernard chocolate cake mmmmmmm. We then went around the displays and throughout the evening I had a little child in a candy store with me. Bernard always likes this kind of stuff and therefore he was a happy boy :).

We did some shopping, dropped everything back home, went to the Omni Park to buy some stuff we had seen before, before it closes, and then came back home. At this point Bernard packed his luggage before we went out to dinner. This time was again Eddie Rockets since we did not feel like Chinese or any of the other fast food outlets.

At this point we went home and had an early night, since the next morning we had to be up at 4am so that Bernard catches the 5am bus to the airport. After a short sleep we both woke up and left for the airport after a quick good bye he went through security. I made my way back home and crawled back into bed for a further 2 hours or so before I had to make my way to Uni 🙂

My first visitor to Dublin has come and gone…Who will be next?…Ann? Bernard again? Maybe Christabelle? Or maybe someone else completely 🙂

Checking in!

8 10 2010

Sorry for staying away for some time, but I have been quite busy. Wednesday saw me going to the DCU Biological Research Society Meet and Greet for fourth year students. This involves all the lecturers in the department (and a couple of lecturers represented by their postgrad students), presenting to the fourth year students their research interests. This is because the students will soon have to choose a fourth year project. They will then spend 9 weeks or so in the particular lab of the particular lecturer doing research. It was great fun. Some of the presentations were really entertaining (including that for our lab…although that was entertaining for all the wrong reasons…but GOOD JOB I must say to the presenter).

Yesterday after Uni, I rushed home, went to a spinning class (my butt is unhappy, but anyways), and then went to IKEA with Ross, a lab mate who just started the second year of his PhD. He has a car, so that can be quite handy. Although I did not buy much.

A Male Version of me Spinning

A Male Version of me Spinning

PhD research work is going OK. I wish to increase the momentum, but hopefully it is building. I have the same problem as always that I can work quite OK in the morning. But once the afternoon comes in I start dwindling. Well, anyways work has to be done. And it will be done. Yesterday, I had my first lab meeting. This is held every week (or so), and we have to present what we had done in the previous weeks and the plan for the next. I had been asked to present about what my project is. I think I did OK, although I blanked out a bit. At one point one of my supervisors asked me to explain what is being shown on the x-axis. And I happily plodded to the y-axis. He said…that is the y-axis…I said x-axis. But anyways. Hopefully things will improve 🙂