Knowing full well that I don't deal well with bad weather - I get in bad funks and just want to eat carbs and cheese, and stay in bed - I'm not sure that living in the pacific northwest/western Canada is going to be a good long term plan. I can't waste 8 months out of 12 (2/3 of my life) being miserable. Something is not right with that. Man, I have a lot of requirements for where to live - weather, good Asian food, other Asian Americans, diversity in general, left leaning politics, mountains, water, good healthcare and education. I think this is a mystical place in fact. It's a combination of California's climate and Canada's government.
Meh, it's nothing I really have the luxury of thinking about anyways. I'm here til Decemer 2010 when my funding runs out. Then it'll be up to the gods. For now, teach, publish, and dissertate til I get this degree.
The process of exam preparation at least taught me some things I didn't expect to learn:
- taking baths is relaxing and worth the work of scrubbing the ring around the tub left by bath bombs and oils
- the first half of a book review is often a great summary of the book
- writing happens faster when you don't agonize over every syllable as I usually do
- pre-cooking a ton of food and putting it in single serve packets in the freezer is a great way to save time and eat better
- this is an extreme test of your ability to manage your time, and more visibly, your ability to handle stress, so it's interesting to see how people deal with it
- it's easier to get work done if you schedule yourself to be somewhere so that your day isn't so shapeless
- at this point in our education, advisers with fragile egos can actually feel threatened by our knowledge, intelligence, and potential future contributions to the field, and the results can be nasty (learned from a friend. no one feels threatened by me, that's for damn sure)
- academia is full of self-centered passive aggressive people with frail egos and poor social, interpersonal, and organizational skills (not on my committee but this is a frequently recurring theme I've noticed)
- fatigue feels like it can be cumulative; I'm still tired