Thursday, 26 January 2012


Not my garden, sadly.

Like a wasp at the bins of an amusement park cafe who can see a can of Raid on the windowsill, I buzz but don't dive in.

The research assistant position is mine. It involves interviewing eleven students for an hour apiece and then transcribing those interviews. Having worked in recruitment for a number of years the first part shouldn't be too difficult once I've dealt with the rust. The second part, one of my bosses was at pains to point out, will be arduous. Hours of listening, rewinding, straining, and typing. But he gave me some tips and I expect it will be fine once I get used to it. Time consuming but rather interesting. Next week I'll do a practice interview on a willing student, and then begin in earnest. So I have a week of utter freedom.

From my list of 'really want to dos' I'm at liberty to choose. But which one?

I would like to tackle my manuscript and begin the rewrite. I've been itching to do this for a while, but I know I'll need absolute isolation. If I do this I will do nothing else. I'll have to be able to utterly immerse myself in the task, and I fear a week won't be long enough. Time enough to read the thing and make a few notes, though. Should I do that, make a start?

I'd also like to get on with my Burma Book. Dig out the notes I made when visiting my aunt last summer, make the dishes she taught me, take photos, write more notes, before it all becomes a haze. Also, I'd like to have a mini version done by the end of May for a particular purpose I can't tell about just incase a particular person reads this.

And I'd like to work on my photographic post-processing skills – or lack thereof – in Lightroom. I'd also like to read the dozen or so books that have piled up on my kindle. And bake a coffee cake. And finish the few small jobs left in the bathroom (I still haven't chosen flooring, and there's a bit of grouting that needs to be seen to).

The garden needs some attention. The kitchen floor is crying out for a fresh coat of paint. This room is beginning to resemble a junk-shop again.

Ice-cream, cheeseburger, ketchup coated chips, jelly tots, iced bun, chocolate coated melting moment...


Elisabeth said...

If only we could have two lives running concurrently and slip between the two . That way we'd get more done. Lovely writing Eryl and gorgeous garden even if sadly not your own.

Philip said...

I have the money waiting for the novel that I have expected for a while now. Just saying.
It is a pleasure to read whatever you write, but I want that manuscript to stop being just a manuscript.
That challenging enough ;-)

India Banks said...

I want to hear about Burma :) So the Burma manuscript gets my vote! Enjoy whatever you do,


The Unbearable Banishment said...

Congrats on the research position. How satisfying! Personally, I'm looking forward to the photos.

rochambeau said...

Really glad to hear about your next mission. How truly interesting it sounds! People are so fascinating! The same but different.
For now:
Oh what to do? That is the question!? Somehow it seems one thing seems to lead to the next and way becomes clear. I bet by now you are already fiddling around with one of your wonderful things to look forward to.
Thank you for the excellent woman in your" elegant" Pintrest department. She speaks to me. Do you know, another blogger gal wrote that this woman looks just like her Grandmother? Amazing right?

Also, I'm into learning more about lightroom. I have friends who swear by it!! Your photo at top is a great one!
Thinking of you and rejoicing in your fantastic news!


MITM said...

Looks like you need a bit Aliceing:

'Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?'
'That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,' said the Cat.
'I don't much care where —' said Alice.
'Then it doesn't matter which way you go,' said the Cat

'But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: 'we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
'How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
'You must be,' said the Cat, 'or you wouldn't have come here.'

'Begin at the beginning,' the King said gravely, 'and go on till you come to the end: then stop.'

alphawoman said...

Jelly tots? Your to-do list would take me a month! lol.

nick said...

Goodness, difficult choices to be made. Yes, if only we all had several parallel lives. Perhaps you should just toss a coin or two.

Good luck with the interviewing. If the interviews are interesting enough, I guess the transcribing won't be quite so bad.

Ice cream for me please....

The Weaver of Grass said...

Congrate on the job Eryl. I am sure you will be fine once you get your teeth into it. In the meantime my advice is sod the jobs - take it easy and give yourself a rest before firing up.

Pat said...

Congrats on the job. Sounds fascinating.
I like to mix and match tasks so read the manuscript and make notes mix in a bit of physical - kitchen floor?, a bit of work on the mini version - interspersed with FRESH AIR whether pootling in the garden or just going for a walk.
Enjoy the calm:)

Monica said...

i could do that, for a bit. congrats 9n landing the position.

weeeeell, if it were me, i would choose something at the polar end of the job i'd be starting. like gardening, or diy, or daydreaming.... something that will have me start the job fresh and motivated.

Eryl said...

Elisabeth ~ that would be so cool!

Philip ~ could be.

India ~ I suspect the Burma book will take me years to finish, it's such a big subject and I keep changing my mind about how to tackle it. But I may do the odd post on it, here, just to help me clarify. So you may well get to read about it.

UB ~ I've been messing about with lightroom today, the tutorial Robyn directed me to (see comments in previous post) is brilliant. I could probably do this and the manuscript, if I'm honest.

Constance ~ you're right, I'm already tinkering with lightroom. The light was gorgeous today so I took loads of photos of stuff in this room. If it's nice tomorrow I may actually go outside!

I did see that comment in Pinterest, how wonderful! I love that woman and would really like to have a huge print of that shot on my wall.

MITM ~ that's exactly what I need! Now I need to work out where the beginning is.

Alpha ~ jelly tots are little sweets (candy). A month is, I'm sure, what it will take me, at least.

Nick ~ coin tossing could well be the answer. Ice-cream coming up, what flavour would you like?

Weaver ~ you're so bohemian!

Pat ~ fresh air is something I really must start to include in my regime. I wonder if I can do the manuscript interspersed with a bit of photography done outside? Mmm...

Monica ~ that's a jolly good idea.

Lulu LaBonne said...

Well done on the job. You could do what I do in your position and spend the entire free week in an agony of indecision followed by self-hatred which is a much worse option than catching up on some books and movies with a pile of jelly tots.

Loved those photos in the last post too xx

Kim Ayres said...

Option paralysis - the curse of the modern age...

The World According To Me said...

I wish that garden was mine!
Well done with your new position.
As for the to do list, I'm always writing one, one day I'll complete it and stop getting distracted with life!

Eryl said...

Lulu ~ that seems to be where I'm headed, I really should just embrace my inner sloth and enjoy doing nothing, with jelly tots.

Kim ~ quite.

Worldy ~ perhaps you should just put 'live' on your to-do list.

grrl + dog said...

Hey Ms.Bitch -
he he he..


thanks for the link to the sketchbook project - it has lots of good stuff and seems very appoachable.

Thanks for wrecking my only procrastination device. Now it WILL have to open that book up.

mika said...

Congratulation - sounds like a pretty interesting job!
Go the cake - for sure!

Carole said...

I have come really late to the party, so am pretty sure you have already picked a task and started with it. It seems the only think you are in danger of losing, is your thoughts on Burma, so I suggest jotting them down, along with making delicious recipes, taking pictures of them, and posting the recipe. Nothing I like better than a good Eryl recipe. Have a great day, doing whatever you are doing.

Eryl said...

Denise ~ just call me the procrasti-wrecker! I only wish I could do it for myself.

Mika ~ Cake it is!

Carole ~ I may just do you a little recipe tomorrow. So far I've mostly been mincing about.

red-handed said...

I know. All these clouds just sit on top of us.

Kass said...

I'm dazed and amazed. Congrats.

Eryl said...

Red ~ damply.

Kass ~ me too. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I read a fantastic tutorial about lightroom, here:



Eryl said...

Robyn ~ thank you. Have you seen Adobe are giving free trials of Lightroom 4 until the end of March? Two whole months to play for free!