First back to reality

It’s Monday morning and my cross country train is chugging inexorably towards Birmingham New Street. The start of my first ‘proper’ week of student-dom. The foundation stones will be laid here. I need to do that well, by concentrating on each individual stone, by looking at what makes good cement; NOT BY wondering what the house will look like in the end. Can mindfulness and strategic thinking co-exist? Now there’s a question I’ve never thought to ask before.
An extremely interesting event this morning during which I had a lightbulb moment for my dissertation. It was one of those moments where your head is concentrating on something completely different and then you get that flashing light that screams “look at me, LOOK AT ME!” When you do look, you think why now; I don’t have time now.
Obviously I can’t tell you what it is yet; you might steal it!!  I did tell someone though. A new colleague who honoured me by choosing to tell me something of her own.

Forward to the reality of Saturday and a monster munch (pickled onion flavour sandwich of course) at the end of a week of realities.

And what a week! Highs and Lows; and Lows and Highs. Some nice inbetween bits would be less exhausting. This blog isn’t about work but the juggling required at least internally means it’s never far from the front/top of the picture/list. 
Thursday was fabulous. My first ‘proper’ day on campus with lectures in the two compulsory courses (Statistical Foundations (SF) & Intoduction to Statistical Modelling(ISM)) open to part-time students this semester. I confess to being shell shocked as the first one started – how could I keep up with the much younger, much more techhie students? SF was quite intense and dry with lots of talk about the assessment and where we will be and I wasn’t as focussed as I should be.

I was panicking about not having SPSS on my laptop and couldn’t get eduroam etc etc etc. It all has to be perfect!!! Of course it’s not. A break at lunch with the son gave me focus. This is going to be my biggest challenge; the voice in my head that says “only the best is good enough”.

You know the facilities on campus are great – there just aren’t enough books; mustn’t forget to take one of my library books next week as it’s been requested my a fellow student. Anyway the Learning Commons is a great place. I spent 80 minutes on a comfy sofa reading notes.

I got ISM; perhaps it was the tutor’s style or perhaps I was just calmer. I really should’ve written this on Thursday but I was so tired. Oh and the homework. The hours. I never really thought about the hours. So last night and today have been spent reading about descriptive and inferential statistics. I’m really hoping it’s going to stick. I think it’s starting to but it’s early days yet. The joys of the IT system kicked in; I guess this makes a change from the blue screen of death.

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