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Okay so that is not me breaking the ribbon, i’m somewhere in the back, but man i’m close!

By Kelly

Just like Evan, I too once contributed regularly to the blog and then…disappeared in to the final stages of writing up. I had hoped, like many before me, that the end of the year would herald the end of my PhD, but alas, I shall be returning to you all next year. This year I finished in the lab, I then went back in to the lab and took on an extra half PhD (nice one Kelly), I submittted some chapters, others I didn’t finish, I attended the worst conference of my life,  I have just had my abstract accepted to what might very well be the best, I stopped blogging, I started a business, I applied for my first proper job, I lost sleep over things I shouldn’t have, and won some awards I should. I’ve been busy, but not quite busy enough to finish. Sigh.

I gave my final seminar just a few weeks back and my life was totally lost to it for time, but it was worth the effort because I thoroughly enjoyed it.  It is a stressful time, but an incredibly rewarding one too. I presented a fraction of what I have actually done and while it may not have been of interest to all, the people whose opinions really mattered to me throuoghly enjoyed it too. It’s been a rather lonely road working on the periphery of other peoples research interests, but now I am having long an interesting discussions with people I respect greatly, and they are thanking me for making them think about scientific problems in a new way. Wow. That blows my mind.

This has been an extraordinary year for me, but 2013 is not the year I submit, that will be for 2014. This is a good time for me to take a break because I am fatigued. The end is quite a long stretch, and having worked so hard for so many years, I’ll be honest, I’m a bit bored. But I can guarantee that after a few weeks away I will be dying to come back and finish things off. So for now, I shall gather up what I have done, tidy my desk and go and pack my bags for a Christmas in Canada. Because I may not have finished, but bloody hell do I deserve a holiday. I imagine you do too.

Merry Christmas to you all and I shall see you in the new year.