It is a gorgeous day. So sunny and warm. Blue skies with wispy clouds and luscious (albeit a bit wet) grass. And of course, just my luck, I have to image today… The silver lining to the big fluffy cloud is that I go home to Montreal tomorrow where it is hot and sunny and proper summer!
Katherine the crab
I had a little accident and poured boiling water all down the back of my hand in April- not lab related, do not worry. This has kind of delayed all my work a little bit. The coverslips that I image are very delicate and fiddly, if you look at them funny, they crack… So it was quite hard to image them while my hand was bandaged (I affectionately have been calling it the claw). I am glad to say that after 9.5 weeks of going to get the burns dressed 3 time a week, I finally no longer need to wear a bandage! The skin has finally regrown! I wish that I could say that I got all my analysis done when I realised I couldn’t do any imaging at the end of April, but if you are an avid View of George Square blog reader (and if you aren’t, I would highly recommend becoming one) you’d know that I am behind on analysis and when the claw got less swollen, I continued imaging, so I am still very behind in my analysis… On a serious note, I would like to thank everyone in the lab who helped me especially during the first few weeks when I couldn’t even fit a glove on!
June has been very hectic! I have taken advantage of the fact that the postdoc who shares the scope with me was on holiday to image my little heart out. When I close my eyes I see cells. I think the images are burnt onto my retina. Now the next step will be do do all of the analysis, which really desperately needs to be done so I can figure out what needs to be done next. It will be done after I come back to the lab reinvigorated after my lovely 3 weeks off.
The 3-minute thesis format is taking Academia by storm. And of course my fellow second-year PhD students from the Centre for Neuroregeneration (CNR) and Centre for Integrative Physiology (CIP) could not escape the trend. Basically you have 3 minutes and a single slide to describe your work. Yes, you read that correctly:we had 180 seconds to describe our work which has taken up the vast majority of the the last 2-years of our lives! Friday, we had to present in the lecture theatre in front of students, postdocs, PIs and heads of centres… gulp. This is what second-year students now have to do (when we were in first year we had to go through the whole 8-month report if you can remember that (again, if not please become an avid reader so you don’t miss out on these important milestones in my PhD 🙂 )). I suppose it is an efficient way to go through 16 student presentations in 2 hours. What no one mentioned to us while we prepared for this symposium, was that there was actually going to be a contest with a prize for the presenter with the best 3-minute thesis. I am quite glad that they didn’t tell us about it, but it did add to my nervousness right before my presentation. And guess what, I was a runner-up for best presentation! Yay me! In all seriousness, I am just glad that it is over, I think this presentation actually stressed me out more than my 8-month report and first year meeting.
On that happy note, I am off to do some imaging. The sooner I start, the sooner I finish, right? Then I get to go and pack and get ready for my early flight tomorrow.