Only what life is able
Making wishes like a child
Knowing the hurt
Touching without fear
Trying despite cost
Still singing softly
Still loving loudly
Life still being
What only life
So I am procrastinating on a piece of analysis right now that would basically seal my fate for my Ph.D. time-wise here in Bozeman. Following a surprisingly productive meeting with my advisor, this morning it turns out that I am 90% sure I will not finish ontime…and all the Ph.D. students said “surprise surprise…” Yeah I know, no student ever finishes ontime…but man I had hopes. I am allowed to hope now aren’t I?
By way of Update: I ended up finishing my dissertation not in 4-6 mos as this post later implies but 3 YEARS LATER! Such is the Ph.D. process….*sigh*
A Dream within a Dream
By: Edgar Allen Poe
Take this kiss upon thy brow!
And in parting from you now,
This much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night or in a day,
In a vision, or in none
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.
We learn we are lovable or unlovable from other people…
“My friend Kurt used to say finding a wife is a percentage game. He said you have to have two or three relationships going at once, never letting the one girl know about the others…Kurt believed you had to date about twenty girls before you found the one your were going to marry. He just believed it was easier to date them all at once. Kurt ended up marrying a girl from Dallas, everybody says he married her for her money. He is very happy…”
Current mood: sad
Give me a voice
Expressions of silent sadness
Over and over
And over again
Asking why, asking how…
Only watching, unable to move
My voice lost
For a friend: Dec. 31, 1985-Sept. 18, 2008
Yes I just linked getting married with Darth Vader, I’m officially an un-recoverable geek; I’ll explain further down…
So I got engaged last August 2010 on the top of a building in Thailand, interested? read here. Amidst the flurry of people who were happy for me and those who were substantially peeved they didn’t hear from me personally but rather through facebook–doh!–even when you think you are ‘winning’ by using social networking, you’re not; accept that now. Anyway, I started mulling the “oh crap, now I’ve actually got to plan this…from Thailand…in a state I don’t live in, where I have no family–although I do have a couple friends.” But, never fear…I have a year or more to do it. If you didn’t know I live in Thailand…read here….and here…and here…and if you’ve decided you’d like to be my stalker check here. Yes I actually live and work in Thailand.
I never dressed up as a bride as a child…not once. I liked to get white dresses dirty. All through elementary, junior high and high school, not once did I ever give weight to the thought of getting married. My type also wasn’t exactly in ‘high demand’ either, so that might have had something to do with it. I went through phases of being too immature, too geeky or that girl who your friends with but the thought of anything more makes you heave ho-ho’s or twinkies or whatever the heck you had for lunch that day.
So yesterday at 8:29 am (according to facebook) I posted an article from the Economist entitled: Doctoral degrees: The disposable academic and it’s quite interesting the responses I’ve been getting. The article is at: http://www.economist.com/node/17723223.
Some people whole heartedly agreed with the article, others were slightly offended at the insinuation that 5-8 years of labor was all for naught.
I thought the article was quite dispiriting and portrayed obtaining a PhD as this ‘waste of intellect/life’ and honestly you’d be hard pressed to find any PhD student that doesn’t think that at some point during their degree process. If you don’t believe me, check out PhD comics (www.phdcomics.com) where their tag line is: “Piled Higher and Deeper (PhD) is the comic strip about life (or lack thereof) in academia.” They even mention graduate education as learning the ‘dark arts.’ I was and still am an avid reader of the comic.
So I’ve gotten a lot of requests to know how my Saturday, August 21st went…
We’d decided to go zip lining with my Thai friend Fon and another friend from frisbee AnnaRae. It was actually a pretty perfect day to head out, cloudy but not raining which was amazing considering it’s been raining pretty constantly here. It was fairly cool even…well as cool as Bangkok, Thailand can get (86 degrees and 88% humidity). We headed north-east to ChonBuri to a tour called Fly with the Gibbons and after a brief introduction and getting geared up we were off on a 24 platform romp through the jungle…
Our guide couldn’t say my name, Mel, so I became Miaw (Cat in Thai) and everytime I came to the platform prior to sailing off it, he felt the need to meow several times. Around platform 19 we asked if I was married, I said no, he asked it I had a boyfriend…I said you see the 6’5 man that you just sent off to the next platform? Him. He called Tyghe Yak (but don’t pronounce the ‘k’ really and say it with emphasis on the ‘a’ sound), it means giant apparently. He then proceeded to ‘marry’ AnnaRae on the next platform where you could go two at a time. AnnaRae said she’d fly over there with him and he surmised that now it would mean they were married.
So this past weekend I got to attempt to get in touch with my inner entomologist…sort of. I went up to the AFRIMS entomology facility in the North at Kamphaeng Phet. Their main purpose is to wait for patient blood samples collected from the villages to come back positive for Dengue virus then they mobilize and head out to the village. They enroll and collected mosquitoes from houses within a 200 m radius of the index house that has the patient. They use backpack aspirators to collect the mosquitoes record information about the house and give it a unique ID. Back at the lab, mosquitoes are sorted into their respective species, Ae. aegypti females being of most interest, and dissected as we are only interested in their head and thorax for Dengue PCR/isolation. The goal being cluster studies of Dengue in patients and mosquitoes and to track movement from village to village. Then I come in with my all-powerful, mostly open source programs and attempt to correlate/track the genetics vs. epidemiology of host/vector.