3 February 2018

My previous post, Risks, Fears and Concerns: Issues teachers have with pedagogical change, talked about the area of research I was going to do for my Master of Research project this year. Ten days later and it has changed somewhat and still not set in concrete yet. 

I’m not good at handling too much uncertainty. For the past few months I’ve known exactly what I’m going to be doing pretty much every day. Back in October we went through a quick process of preparing our house for sale, and then it was the sale process. Everything was on a tight schedule and we adhered to it successfully. We found a house to rent quickly after we sold, and then we went on a month long holiday across the USA, immensely enjoying our chock-full itinerary. On return, it was a two week moving process, again planned successfully. 

Since then, life has had some planned moments but a lot more spontaneous and reactive moments. 
  1. A trip to Melbourne for the tennis was planned and went smoothly except for some disappointment in our accommodation. My next post is a review of it.
  2. I bought a new car. Griffin helped me to research possibilities for a new car back in November when the air-conditioning gave out in my 8 year old Peugeot. We gradually honed down the choices to the Subaru Impreza hatchback. I started to think about when I would actually go ahead with a test drive and purchase when I discovered Subaru were having a four day sale so jumped at the chance and a week later was driving a new car, a fair bit earlier than intended. Mind you, this has me frazzled because I’m so scared I’m going to crash it.
  3. I thought by now I would also have a new wardrobe since I currently don’t have a built-in but the temporary clothes hangers we bought from Bunnings are doing an adequate job, successfully delaying a dreaded trip to Ikea. 
  4. We planned to buy a new fridge for the smaller space in the rental we are now living in. We initially used one that was our beer and wine fridge in the garage at our old house. We had already told Emma she could have it for her new share accommodation in Canberra. A week before it was taken down there I ordered a replacement from The Good Guys. Three days after the order went through they said it was on backorder. For nearly two weeks we ran a long extension cord to the garage where our old big fridge sits, handless and growing mould, while waiting for the new fridge to arrive. It was an annoying situation but manageable.
  5. We are living with connected gas for the first time ever. We planned to buy a gas heater in autumn but with a slightly cooler day this week I hit the panic button and bought one online and it was delivered the next day by . I hate being cold.
  6. At one stage in the moving process I saw the key to our buffet and sideboard sitting on the kitchen bench and thought that it wasn’t a very secure place for the one and only key to be. That is the last time I remember seeing it. I can’t remember if it was the kitchen bench at the old house or where we now live. It was probably the old place. I have some memory of putting something in a coin pocket of my jeans, but I think that was actual coins while we were at the tennis in Sydney. I may have put it in a little container that went into a moving box but it hasn’t materialised. Neither has a jar of pistachio nuts, an Alessi jar it was too. I sometimes wake in the early hours of the morning stressing about where this key could be. I came home from a friend’s place after midnight last night and spent several minutes looking through a bunch of little drawers I have sitting on top of my chest of drawers. I’m sure I’ve looked for the key in them before. Meanwhile a bunch of stuff sits on top of the buffet and sideboard that should be in them. They taunt me with their conspicuous presence.
  7. Back in November a friend booked us in for a 50th birthday party celebration in February. Turns out it clashes with the only other major social event planned for the first two months of this year. The second friend tried to change the date of her Chinese New Year celebration for us but when more than ten people are involved this is impossible. When I have so many weekends with nothing on, this is frustrating but I’m finally accepting it.
  8. With paying rent monthly, income arriving fortnightly and a fairly large some of money to be parked from the sale of the house, I opened new bank accounts and established some regular transfers. Unfortunately one of these transfers was entered with an incorrect account number and money left but wasn’t received by the account to which it was intended. I issued a recall but since it was completely due to my error there was no guarantee the money would be returned and since it didn’t bounce back it was probably someone’s legitimate account number. Turns out the recipient of this money called this unexpected income into question with her bank and it looks like the money will thus be returned. Fingers crossed.

Now I know this is all a part of adulting and, particularly with not working, very manageable. However, uni brought me undone. I spent a month putting together my research proposal for the application to MRES last year and was really set on doing what I had proposed. My initial meeting with my supervisor was very positive in this regard. However, after he discussed my project with colleagues over the week following, he suggested a much more restricted version of the project at our next meeting, so restricted I felt handcuffed and strangled at the same time. 

A day later, I asked a friend for some pointers in an area more to my liking and she came through with some sprinkles of fairy dust, some of which has bloomed. Thanks Jenny! Still, I was frazzled as my mind jumped from one idea to the next and prepared for argument and discussion with my supervisor. An hour long phone call to my Mum earlier this week helped to calm me down with her encouragement to stick with what I was passionate about. By the day I was supposed to meet with my supervisor I was armed with two alternative areas of study. The first was closer to my original proposal, the second had a focus on enterprise education and entrepreneurship. However, my supervisor had the flu so asked me to send by email my new research proposal. Under the perceived pressure to commit to a singular focus I was able to combine all that I saw as good and worthwhile into a relatively simple research task. It is now about the use of pedagogical approaches in enterprise education. There’s a little more to it than that but until I hear back from my supervisor I’ll leave it in those general terms.

I’m looking forward to my research being set in more certain terms and the various factors related to moving into a new place settle down. I don’t like living life frazzled and lacking sleep. Now if only I could find that key.


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