Summertime analysis

Fringe time is coming, the posters have gone up, as you can see from my picture of George Square, the Underbelly venue is going up, complete with the giant purple cow! This is the first year, since I moved to Edinburgh in August 2013, that I will be in Edinburgh to experience the festival in its entirety. I cannot believe I am admitting this, but I have actually booked myself tickets to see 3 shows at the Festival this year. 3 SHOWS! What has gotten into me? Edinburgh may have finally worn me down.

Lab work
As I mentioned in my last post, I was off on holiday for 3 weeks (more on that later), so I haven’t been doing many experiments these days. What I have been doing since getting back is a lot of data analysis. I have almost caught up! While looking through folders of images on my hard drive, I just kept on finding folders that had not been analysed. Once I made my way through them, I realised that I have actually done more experiments than I thought and I am probably going to have a monster thesis to write up (too much data is better than not enough, right?). In finally getting a chance to look at my data, I now know which experiments I need to focus on to have completed data sets (the aim of all PhD students). Once I completed my analysis, I also saw that all my imaging for one of my chapters in complete! Woohoo! This is the same chapter that I thought I had already finished… but at least now it really should be, aside from some Western blots to be done in the next couple of weeks. Fingers crossed.

Edinburgh Award
The University of Edinburgh offers Edinburgh Awards. These awards allow you to gain recognition from the university for an extracurricular activity that you are particularly invested in. The categories range from: charity fundraising to Gaelic outreach and sports union club management. This year, for the first time, they have launched a Digital Ambassadors Edinburgh Award. This award recognises digital skills such as Wikipedia editing, blogging, social media management… I have decided to take part in this award, so I have spent the past few weeks looking at digital footprints (the traces that we leave online), blogging, updating my LinkedIn profile, building connections through Twitter and researching the role that social media plays in science. It is all very interesting and very worthwhile, albeit time consuming especially for a PhD student such as myself who is entering her final year (FINAL YEAR!). I think that these Edinburgh Awards are a wonderful initiative by the University and are definitely worth it.

Summer sunshine
I had 3 glorious weeks of sunshine during my holidays this year. I went back home to Montreal for a week during which the weather was gorgeous and I got to take advantage of all the terrasses which Montreal is renowned for and which are severely lacking in Edinburgh (mostly due to the rainy weather- totally understandable). After my speedy visit home, I went to Greece with some labmates for 10 days. It was spectacular. I would highly recommend going to Athens and sipping a nice cold drink on a rooftop with a view of the Acropolis, or walking through the winding streets of the city centre to get an ice cream, or just eating as much tzaziki and feta cheese as your heart desired. (Personally, that last one was my favourite thing to do 🙂 .)  If you do not have any summer getaways planned, and you stay in Edinburgh for the summer, you are spoiled for choices of festivals to attend (Magic, Jazz & Blues, Fringe, International…) and if festivals are not your thing, find yourself a nice pub to watch the Olympic Games!


On that note, I am off to fix some cells which I will then stain, image and have to analyse. And so the cycle begins again! Happy Sunday!