Thursday, February 07, 2008

Ups and Downs

My mood is currently in a bit of a strange state of manic flux - something which I don't often experience, but I want to write things down to try and stabilise everything in my own mind.

I'm currently at a conference in Sitges, just outside of Barcelona.

Yesterday I was up at 5.30 to take the flight to Barcelona and spent a few hours walking around this absolutely beautiful city. I had expected the architecture to be impressive but I have to say I was absolutely taken aback by how stunning it was. Lots of photos to follow when I get back to Santiago and process them.

I met up with three of my colleagues later at Barcelona airport and we took the train to Sitges, a small, seaside town on the Med. So, the good points:

I'm at a conference, listening to some interesting talks, by some very good physicists. There are a lot of impressive people here and I should be able to talk to a fair number and make some good links.

The hotel is incredible, or rather the view is. The view from my window looks out over the perfect blue skies and the Mediterranean sea. The beach is perhaps 20 meters or so from my balcony and the palm trees gently rustling in the wind make for a relaxing accompaniment while I work at my laptop.

So, everything should be perfect...but

I try not to talk or blog about negative things, but sometimes they just build up and you gotta...sorry!

The cold which I caught back in Santiago is turning into a bruiser. My normal symptoms for a cold are sweating from the face like a pig and this is never pleasant for me, or anyone else - this doesn't make me feel terribly sociable. Consequently I slept badly last night and so am feeling grouchy today.

I'm reminded here of the fact that my Spanish hasn't come on as fast as I'd have liked. Trying to juggle physics and learning another language is proving tough once more and though I've learned a lot of vocab, the active use of it is coming along frustratingly slowly. Hopefully when I stop running around the country I'll have more time to concentrate on it. People are very very good about speaking English when I'm around and so it's a lot easier than it ever was in China, but I do occasionally think it would be nice to interact normally in shops and restaurants in the country I live.

A couple of my projects have just hit problems which is the way with research, but an accumulation of very different things has suddenly dealt me a bit of a blow and has knocked my confidence a little. Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath and get on with it...

OK, so I feel like I should just pull myself together, pump myself up with some pills and enjoy this amazing place and get on with the the work at hand. Sometimes it's just good to get these things down on paper...may not sound like much but sometimes, especially when you're tired from travelling it can get to you. Right, better, off and out for dinner!

1 comment:

helensotiriadis said...

chin up. you're a famous photographer.