Sunday, 28 September 2014

Day 280: A break, of sorts.

Day 280 (12 Sept) Thursday. A break, but not as you know it.

Skyward, at 6.12am
We can't get away from comparing the early dawn pics. A few on twitter sharing around the views from their backyards. Mine at 6.12am. It is getting lighter, faster. 

End of the day, end of the week,
at 6.12pm
The day at work was...a day at work. At 6.12pm, back in the office, teaching just having finished. Next week is the semester break. So that means putting the notes away for a week or so. But not a rest from work. I've got a conference coming up (in Perth) and the National Council for the union in a couple of weeks. That's more preparation for different things ahead. An academic's work is never done. 

Day 279: More work

Day 279 (11 Sept) Wednesday. Less play.

Bonsai, at 6.12am
Well into the semester grind now. Japanese class first up then talking about East Asian security in the afternoon and into the evening. As you do. Watering the bonsai at 6.12am as well as taking in the early light of the 6.12am time of day. Nice after all the darker starts and summer is on its way. 

Dawn, at 6.12am
I've very much become acclimatised to the dawn side of the day. Very pleasant time. 

At 6.12pm, still in a tute, as we work through the John Dower text on war. I think it is proving to be an interesting and challenging text, as it should be. 

Tutoring at 6.12pm
   Back in the office, and I note with a wry smile that an email has arrived, from twitter, with recommendations to follow ABC 6.12pm! But of course. 

Thanks twitter...

Day 278: Promising

Day 278 (10 Sept) Tuesday. New shoots?

New shoots? at 6.12am
The bonsai has featured here once or twice. During its winter spell, I dared trim the branches as was required, with much trepidation. I'm no gardener but I followed instructions instincts. I worried as it lay dormant all winter but it appears I may now be reaping rewards. It does appear there are two new shoots here...let's keep our fingers crossed. 

On the phone, at 6.12pm
And if it is Tuesday...I must be in my office after a day of classes and one-on-one supervision of students doing advanced research projects. Two days of lecturing and tutes ahead...time to wrap up the preparation of those classes. I appear to have been on the phone right at or time, multitasking as we say in the classics. I was listening to the convo, really. 

On to home, rinse, repeat. 

Day 277: Life goes on...

Day 277 (9 Sept) Monday. The work continues.

Breakfast, at 6.12am
Despite the result over the weekend, nothing much changes with the daily routine. It's off to work, breakfast at 6.00am, classes as usual. My cafe parliament mug is my favourite, a reminder of my time working in the Senate many years ago, but on a day like today, well of course one drinks from the cup of parliament...

in traffic, at lights, stopped,
at 6.12pm
An uneventful drive up the coast was complemented with an uneventful one home in time for orchestra rehearsal, it being a Monday and all. Nice to have that to look forward to, at the end of the day.

Day 276: A new era, wishing upon a star.

Day 276 (8 Sept) Sunday. New era.

Reading and listening,
at 6.12am
With a change of government comes all sorts of thoughts. At 6.12 this morning, that included reading...trying to think about the results and listening to commentators on the radio talking about the results. 

I'm a bit of an election paraphernalia hoarder at the best of times but this one was quite interesting for me given I live in the electorate of the now former prime minister. I sense this won't be the end of it for us good burghers of Griffith. Knowing Mr Rudd, a further stint in opposition will be out of the question and I expect another run at the polls within months. 

The end of the day,
at 6.12pm
By the evening, I continued to be enchanted upon the evening star, just like yesterday. Except, today in the new era, different. 

Through the letterbox, darkly

Friday, 7 March 2014

Day 275: has come to this

Evening sets in, a new day awaits

Day 275 (7 Sept) Saturday. Federal election day.

Starting the day, at 6.12am
And so, after a fairly tumultuous few months of implosive ALP in-fighting and leadership tensions, election day has finally arrived. I have a lot to do: clarinets at 10.00am and later in the day, I'm rostered on at a polling booth to hand out material on behalf of the Union. We're taking the education cuts right up to the government. 

So an early start, the light in the backyard is just starting to come through...and at 6.12am, it's all looking quite pleasant out there. 
Time to pack up, at 6.12pm

Rehearsal is its usual fun then it is home to rest up before the arvo on the booth then to a night in front of the screen awaiting, watching, analysing and reading the results.

On the booth with colleagues
At 6.12pm, we were packing up, taking home all the paraphernalia, it's a little dark. The night sky just a few minutes before, at 6.09pm, was a pic waiting to be taken. All went OK on the booth, pleasantries exchanged as usually happens. Called in to a friend's place on the way home, to watch events unfold. 

The Liberal Party won. Kevin Rudd, former prime minister, was re-elected to his seat here in Griffith. More to come...

Day 274: The day before...

All about Deakin, Alfred
 Day 274 (6 Sept) Friday.

Breakfast, at 6.12am
Early specialist appointment to ensure that all I am doing to help prop up the medical profession is proceeding along nicely thanks very much...I prefer to go early, it gets it out of the way and the propensity for my specialist to be on time diminishes as the day proceeds... (I guess that can be important, if there are serious things to discover). 

Still, even though a small sleep in is warranted after a late night, it never quite happens that way. Breakfast is served, at 6.12am.

During the day, a lovely surprise in the form of a book written by one of my former professors in Japan. It's a book on Alfred Deakin, timely given the election is tomorrow and I've recently bene reflecting on the period of the last decade of the 1890s as critical to Australia's political development and Alfred Deakin was a part of that. It will be interesting to see it from a Japanese perspective. 

Through a glass...
at 6.12pm
Evening, at 6.12pm, and I am at home, with time to sit and contemplate much ado about politics, including this recently published text on leadership. So read, I must, for tomorrow there be an election.


Day 273: The election draws near...

Political acts
 Day 273 (5 Sept) Thursday.

Lunch at breakfast,
at 6.12am
Teaching cuts across any reasonable eating time (as usual) and at 6.12am, I was multitasking again, making lunch while breakfast cooked. I suppose I could have just as easily been watering the bonsai or on the computer...such is this record of my life, but there you go, aiming for a little variety. 

On the way to work as I approached the car park, I noticed someone had pasted posters over all the candidates' corflutes overnight, demonstrating the general displeasure with our political system. This electorate, Fisher, has been witness to some particularly poor examples of the political process as well. The sign said: 'Vote for us we will definitely disappoint you'

Naturally I tweeted it, as a public service.

Post-lecture, at 6.12pm
The end of another lecture and back in the office, at 6.12pm, to complete a range of tasks before leaving. Tomorrow is another medical appointment and the day after is election day: the days I really enjoy. 

Until then, there's marking to be done and another late night run down #theBruce.

Day 272: Work, bookended by, work.

Day 272 (4 Sept) Wednesday

Get going, at 6.12am
Now we are well into the semester, there is little shifting from a very set pattern, timetabled as it were, from Monday to Friday. At 6.12am, there were some final adjustments to be made to today's lectures while, at 6.12pm, we had moved on to the next chapter in the Dower text, one that looked at images of propaganda during World War Two. For some of the students, it was the first time to see these sorts of images and to engage in what could be, at times, a challenging discussion. They did well.

We also had a school meeting, the last bastion in the corporatised university, for collegial supportive decisionmaking. Well, no, not really anymore. There's usually someone from on high telling us how to do things and we shall brook no dissent. For this is what has become of the modern university...
Dower discussion, at 6.12pm

Good thing I have a late finish to the evening and a long drive back down the Bruce could get angry otherwise.

Day 271: A little rain, a long day.

Day 271 (3 Sept) Tuesday.

A little rain, at 6.12am
A wet start to a long day. Union matters take up a good part of the morning and individual student research projects in the afternoon, very intense. 

The dull reflection of the rain-soaked timber makes a sort of picturesque start to the day at 6.12am. The bonsai still needs watering (not enough in the way of rain to disturb it) while the breakfast cooks. 

By 6.12pm, it is time enough (just) to be looking over and doing last minute revisions to notes for classes still to conduct this week. It is really the only time one gets to do this type of work. 
The office, at 6.12pm

A clear run home at least this evening, with the usual Caboolture's become part of the routine. 

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Day 270: Lining up all the duck(ling)s.

Mother duck said, quack, quack, quack, quack
Day 270 (2 Sept) Monday. 

Early/late chores, at 6.12am
Visiting mum yesterday meant not quite finishing all the necessary Sunday chores, including the washing. So while I was waiting for the porridge to cook, I went out to brings the washing in. I have one of those very handy Japanese clothes hangers which comes in quite handy during inclement weather. 

Cuppa, art deco, at 6.12pm
Arriving at work, well, as you can see, working amidst a wildlife reserve does have its rewards. Ma, Pa and bay ducks all traipsed across the campus this fine morning. It's a regular scene around our place...not to mention the joeys which start to come out around now too.

With classes and meetings done, I just had to call in to catch up with my friend to see how she is progressing and have a cuppa before orchestra rehearsal. 

Home again, before it all starts again tomorrow. I'm beginning to suspect, one so committed to an actual timetable, probably shouldn't undertake a project to see how 'same, same' or 'different' one's everyday life might be...

Day 269: Time to visit.

Bella puppy!
 Day 269 (1 Sept) Sunday.

September. Spring. One week out from the federal election. I've decided to head down to visit mum. She has a new pup and she is quite an attraction. It's always nice to visit anyway, for no particular, after all, you shouldn't need reasons to visit your mum. 
Light, at 6.12am

It's a reasonably pleasant day today with a bit of a chance to compare the day's beginning and end (though sunset wasn't quite 6.12pm). 

In between, it was playing with Bella, sitting and chatting, popping down the road as we tend to do and just basically doing very little. 

Light, at the other end.

Catching up, at 6.12pm

Home at 6.12pm was time to rest and catch up on  reading, think about tomorrow's classes and meetings, indeed, the week ahead--including the election. I've been asked to spend a bit of time on one of the local booths on behalf of the union...I haven't done that for a loooonng time. I'll be observing things electoral quite closely this week.

Day 268: A well-tempered start

Down the bonsai trunk....
Day 268 (31 Aug) Saturday.

Through the window, wondering,
at 6.12am
Nothing in the diary today although that doesn't always translate into a break from work. But it can mean a bit of a lie in so at 6.12am, that is just what I was doing, listening to the radio and thinking about the plans for the day. A few minutes later, I was watering the bonsai, and playing with the perspective...

Through another glass,
at 6.12pm.
Part of it would be marking, preparing classes, doing admin; part of it would be going around to check up on my friend, do shopping or whatever needs to be done. 

And by the evening, at 6.12pm, it as sitting down to do some catch-up reading. There is always something that turns up during the semester that has material worth including in the lectures. 


Day 267: A taxing time.

There shall be dancing, in the sunlight
 Day 267 (30 Aug) Friday.

Light, at 6.12am
Tax. Taxing. Lovely play on words really isn't it. Today I have an appointment today with the taxation people (tax time) right after I take the next dose of the infusion medication (taxing) and in between get to friend in hospital and see my own doctor...good thing I only had a 19 hour day yesterday...

Convalescence, at 6.12pm
So given I didn't have to 'rush off' until a little later, giving me time to 'smell the roses' or at least observe the light and shade in the bougainvillaea. By the time 6.12pm came around, it was back at my friend's place, checking up on her convalescence and seeing that our colleagues were doing the right thing by her after all...

Day 266: Take yesterday, rinse, repeat...

Day 266 (29 Aug) Thursday.

Coffee essentials, at 6.12am
Yes, another day to hit what has become known on twitter as #theBruce...the Bruce Highway. It is usually why I find myself having breakfast at 6.12am, to be out the door before 6.45am and the worst of the traffic. 

Just as I leave however, I see my local member is spruiking his candidacy in the forthcoming election. His Rudd Reports are regular features in our post boxes, and they make useful resources for my teaching (always seek the silver lining...) 

Further meetings and tutes and lectures in the other politics course today: International Security. We are reading the same Dower text in the tutorials (it has interesting and relevant cross-over) and I'm interested in the way students are reading the text, depending on whether they are doing one or 
both of the relevant courses. 

Twelve hours down, with four hours to go,
at 6.12pm
With appointments in Brisbane tomorrow, I won't be up the Coast again until Monday. So although I'm in my office at 6.12pm, just after the lecture, there is another four hours or so of work to complete before I leave. The day isn't quite over yet...

Day 265: This multitasking life...

Day 265 (28 Aug) Wednesday.

Sometimes when I look back over this record (which was started just to see whether or not I was a creature of habit), with just 100 days to go, it is apparent that a) I do do pretty much the same things each day and b) perhaps sometimes I try to do too much...

Brekkie, etc, at 6.12am
So it was at breakfast at 6.12am where I find myself eating, reading yesterday's paper, watching the timeline and, of course,  listening to the AM program in the background. Oh, not to mention, taking a pic at this point...

Tute time, at 6.12pm
That's something of what appears to be a contrast at 6.12pm, where I am reading, apparently. Well, reading and listening and assessing a student presentation in a tute; the discussion moderation comes shortly. We've progressed some of the way through the Dower text, the students are starting to make sense of it and their discussion and analysis is developing along nicely. It's a satisfying job at times.

Back to the office a little later to finish up. Tonight I left around 10.00pm, not unusual. Back tomorrow, for more.  

Day 264: Bargains? No, bargaining...

Day 264 (27 Aug) Tuesday. 

It's an early start because again we are meeting over the bargaining for the enterprise agreement. This is work in addition to my regular schedule and it can feel like playing chess v.e.r.y.s.l.o.w.l.y...We are hoping it will be done soon, but at the same time, we seek to get the best possible conditions for staff. So the early start sees the colour appearing in the sky, it is getting lighter now and I do like the affect of the branches against the lightening sky. 

Sunrising, at 6.12am
Welcoming committee
At work, on campus, the alpha kanga is out and about checking his territory. It is moments like these I wish I had my main camera on me. I have met a gent who has taken over 5000 photos of the wildlife on our campus. It would be an easy thing to do. 

The extra meetings today mean a little extra time staying back in the office, reviewing notes from today; adding final touches to classes for tomorrow. Looking on the schedule for the next issue arising...

The desk, at 6.12pm

Meanwhile, there are friends to look after too...

Day 263: Witch's hat in the morning, ships in the night

Well, one way to start the day, at 6.12am
Day 263 (26 Aug) Monday. Notwithstanding all that is on, it was back to classes today but not before I had to do a little 'maintenance' out the front. The council is repairing the footpath and so there are the usual safety controls in place. It just so happened that one ended up on my garage roof overnight courtesy, no doubt, of a bored passer-by. An industrious start to the 6.12 morning. 

Later in the evening, at 6.12, I was approaching the carpark at work when one of the buildings (the 'tower') loomed up like a lost ship at sea. With the concert yesterday, there was no rehearsal scheduled for this evening which gave me a chance to work back a little, and work my way home a little more casually. 

It's back tomorrow, for a full day...

Ships in the 6.12pm