This week, I’ve had some bad news and some good news.

I’ll start with the bad news first.

A month ago, I applied for a postdoc research position at a UK university. The position genuinely excited me, and I enjoyed writing my application for it. I haven’t heard anything about my application over the last four weeks and therefore thought it was unsuccessful. Today, I received an email from them, informing all applicants that the funding for the research associate position has been cancelled due to reasons beyond their control…

If the reason involves the economic impact caused by the coronavirus outbreak, reduction of research funding in some areas could be inevitable this year. Certainly, it is beyond our control, and all I can do is stay focused on what I am doing.

On the other hand, I also got fantastic news from my primary supervisor. My external examiner has been officially appointed and, now, both my external and internal examiners are, finally, in place! This was so reassuring because I have been waiting for the agreement regarding examiners for the past three months. My viva date will soon be arranged, and it is also possible that the viva will happen remotely, via an online meeting.

The goal is in sight, and this news gave me my motivation back!

I had been wanting to submit my thesis as soon as possible, but I have changed my mind a bit after receiving that news. Writing a good quality piece of work rather than rushing towards submission is now my priority, and I am doing revisions as often as possible. This week, I’ve been rewriting and editing Chapter 3.




Staying at home

The UK was put into lockdown this week. Luca and I started working from home on 17th March, so I’ve seen him doing work on the dining table for the past 10 days. He is extremely busy as he works in the public sector, in social care. Every day I hear him talking with colleagues and care providers on the phone. Now I understand what he does and how tough working in the field is—I had not previously realised that.

As for food, I am really grateful to have some in the house. I had a pleasant surprise when I found canned beans, corn and tuna at the back of the cupboard.

Home delivery from a supermarket is still not available on many websites. But I’ve noticed, in food stores, that the availability of many products is getting back to normal. I was able to buy some basic stuff, including two bottles of hand soap.

On Monday, I cooked spaghetti aglio e olio with peppers and asparagus, which was delicious! We will need to eat some vegetables during the lockdown, as the stay-at-home lifestyle could easily push us into a snacking habit.

I also cooked pasta with bacon and mushrooms, seasoned with butter and soy sauce, which had a fantastic flavour. I’ve been enjoying minimal cooking, using only a few nutritious ingredients.




My achievement in week 169

  • Working on editing Chapter 3.


Goals for week 170

  • Complete Chapter 3.