Category Archives: Work/life balance

In which normal life flickers just ’round the corner

Today on a neighbourhood walk with my son, blustery and cold with a few flecks of rain, we passed a window that still had a faded child-drawn rainbow and the advice to “stay safe”. It struck me as rather quaint, … Continue reading

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In which we near end-game

January and February are always my least favorite months, but I can’t remember a winter when I longed for spring as desperately as this one. It’s the pandemic, of course, which has sucked the world dry of what little joy … Continue reading

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In which we face the rain

How quickly strangeness becomes familiarity. As autumn hunkers down, and the COVID infection rates continue to rise (nearly 13,000 cases reported yesterday in the UK), I see things around me that I never could have imagined before 2020. A trip … Continue reading

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In which business is not quite as usual: the post-first-wave lab resumes

Business as usual is the sort of mentality that’s probably only certain in retrospect. At the moment, the jury is still very much out. My lab reopened its doors a few weeks ago. This is, of course, a wonderful thing. … Continue reading

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In which we venture out

We are poised on the edge. As the world teeters between spring and summer, cloaked in lush green and bursting into flower, there is a sense that our pandemic lockdown is coming to an end. Not all at once, of … Continue reading

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In which we lock down

There is nothing I can write about life on lockdown that has not already been written. Doing so risks the scorn of the likes of Times journalist Matthew Parris, who on Saturday opined: I’m encountering what for me is an … Continue reading

Posted in Domestic bliss, Gardening, Staring into the abyss, The profession of science, Work/life balance | 6 Comments

In which the pandemic unfolds: a postcard from The Big One?

Epidemics are works in progress. At any given moment in time, you can’t know how they will end. They are a curve on a graph of ultimately unknown trajectory; when you are just a dot on a growing curve, you … Continue reading

Posted in Epidemics, Nostalgia, Scientific thinking, Staring into the abyss, Work/life balance | 1 Comment

In which my mother stands behind me, and I mother in turn

The winter always belonged to my mother and me. We both loved the late autumn, when the last of the leaves plastered the pavements in a smear of color, and our breath fogged the morning air. November also usually brought … Continue reading

Posted in Domestic bliss, Joshua, Nostalgia, The ageing process, Work/life balance | 2 Comments

In which I run aground

It’s been a long winter, and the past academic term seemed to stretch on forever, a blur of stress and deadlines punctuated by good news and bad. My lab got another paper accepted, and my outline-stage grant was shortlisted. But … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Domestic bliss, Gardening, science funding, Staring into the abyss, The ageing process, Work/life balance | 11 Comments

In which we grow towards the light

It’s that time of year when the long winter starts to nibble away at your core. Everything feels cold, dark, and dormant, held in abeyance until better times. The festive period is a distant memory, and spring seems so far … Continue reading

Posted in Domestic bliss, Gardening, Joshua, Scientific thinking, Work/life balance | 1 Comment