Diversification of the site

Hi everyone. It’s been a while. Sorry!

That’s not to say nothing has happened; on the contrary, much has occurred not least including a revamp of this website. I’m afraid I’ve ditched the idea of translating posts. I do enjoy translating posts and writing in other languages (reading my posts back in another language normally makes them feel more profound, somehow!). However, it was time-consuming and, though enjoyable, caused sufficient consternation to prevent me from posting more often.

So, you might have noticed that the my website is monochrome infused with purple. An odd colour choice? Well, it represents the asexuality symbol. Since I identify with the definitions of asexuality, I want to write more about it, as it’s still not really “mainstream” yet. That is, there are some people that (understandably) find it difficult to understand asexuality and some (not understandably) are hostile towards the idea. I don’t want to be a spokesperson or poster boy (ha!) for asexuality, but I hope by sharing what I find and experience there can be some sharing of understanding. That’s the plan, anyway.

I have also been working on Cramlington Today. It’s a bit of a pet project, where the pet is a rather large labrador. No, really, it’s a huge labrador. It’s a sweet, friendly and cuddly puppy that offers a lot to its owner but can sometimes be a little too big to handle. As a project, it’s the product of my wish to promote the town I live in, which is really an up-and-coming town that offers (and will offer) a lot to the region. Cramlington Today will eventually be a community project (I hope) and will be a tourism site, community site, and local business site rolled into one.

As I write this, I’m in Amsterdam. I’m having a short break and enjoying the delights of Benelux (minus Luxembourg). To give an itinerary of what I’ve visited so far (that’s Monday through to Friday): Den Haag (The Hague), Mauritshuis, the International Court of Justice, Bruges, the Artis Royal Zoo, Rembrandthuis, the Hermitage Museum, the Holland International boat tour, the Amsterdam ArenA and the Rijksmuseum. Tomorrow we’re headed for Brussels. I’m exhausted and my back muscles are raging a violent war against my spine.

On Monday I’ll be jetting back to the UK. I’ll be needing a holiday after that!

Awakened by foxes

By |September 7th, 2012|Recent news|0 Comments

As I lay awake to the sound of mating foxes and postgraduate students (please be reassured that, so far as I can discern, they are purely intra-species relations), I look back at what has happened since my blog update.

The conference season has taken me to Brighton, Sheffield and Salamanca: to the BSRLM Day Conference, CETL-MSOR Conference and SEFI MWG Seminar, respectively. At each I presented my findings on lecturers’ use of computer-aided assessment.

Since then, I have been continuing with data collection; first interviewing students and, second, interviewing lecturers that do not use CAA. In this time I have also finished a first draft of a thesis chapter, which feels like a milestone passing despite the shortcomings I see in it.

I managed to squeeze in a holiday to Rome, which was very nice. I particularly liked the Vittorio Emanuele II monument for its ostentatiousness and sheer ridiculousness. It reached a dazzling 37°C while we were there: a feat so far unmatched by the drizzling United Kingdom. We, of course, remain hopeful of a late summer surge!

Holiday in Barcelona 2011

By |August 20th, 2011|Recent news|0 Comments

I spent a week of my holiday this year in Barcelona, Spain. While there, I visited the basilica of the Sagrada Família. The recently completed part was beautiful as the scorching sun shone through the stain-glass windows.

The continuation of my football education allowed me to witness first-hand an el clásico match between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF at the Camp Nou. I was also lucky enough to witness the sun set over the Pyrenees from the Montjuïc.

The food was also marvellous. Despite being my fourth visit to Barcelona, I had not yet tried any gazpacho – and I recommend it! I tried out my rusty Spanish linguistics (though of course the primary language of Barcelona and the surrounding Catalonia region is Català) and nearly asked for the pudding menu (“la carta”) instead of the bill (“la cuenta”). Nonetheless, I made it home safely without accidentally eating too much more food than I had anticipated!