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Had my last day of work yesterday. Took a month off before starting my PhD in september. Bit sad to be going really because I enjoyed who i worked with and the whole detectivesque element to the work.

So today i'm mumpy and bored.

Off to Austria for some walking and mountain biking in the Tyrol for a couple of weeks. That'll be good.
Funeral today for Lawrie Springate one of the researchers at work.

Best story involving Lawrie was when he gave me an impromptu and impassioned lecture about current Allium taxonomy in the Gents toilet at work cause he was pissed that I'd done something that he felt was his to do.

Its funny now. It wasn't then.
  • Listening to: Willy Mason
  • Watching: BBC News
  • Eating: Waiting for the pizza I just made -thats right!
Head off tomorrow to the Angus glens for a week of walking, solitude and botanising.
Glen Clova, Glen Doll, Loch Brandy, Loch Wharral, Loups of Kenny, Meikle Kilrannoch, Juanjorge

Got my camera, Francis Rose Wildflower's key and the BBS Bryophtye fieldguide.

I'm pretty stoked. I need it actually. I'm so tired with work and day to day nonsense.

I have a wee list of things I want to see. So hopefully you will too!
  • Listening to: Jose Gonzalez - Heartbeats
  • Reading: Rare Plant Register
  • Drinking: Black Coffee
I've booked a lodge in the glens for a week and I've been pouring over maps looking for localities mentioned in the rare plant register. I'm gonna spend part of the week looking for plants that havent been seen for a while.
  • Listening to: Air conditioning
  • Reading: The Musci Indici
Ah I'm so bored
  • Listening to: Work's air conditioning
  • Reading: my crazy scribblings
  • Watching: time tick on
Haven't done anything here for a while. I'll post some pictures of the Cairngorms I think. I was up there wandering aimlessly at the weekend. Did the best part of 50miles over three days...oh my aching feet. I'm gettin auld.
  • Listening to: Arcade Fire
  • Reading: A giant spreadsheet of South Korean Type Specimens
  • Watching: My boss to see if she notices I'm doing this
kidding. I am very content

Well last week I had an interview at the Edinbrugh Uni for a research grant to pay for work that will form a PhD. It went better than expected they gave me 4 yrs worth of money so from September I'll be researching Phylogeography and the dynamics of speciation in the Himalaya.

Dr Elliott I presume.....nice
  • Playing: my guitar
  • Drinking: Red Wine…
  • Playing: my guitar
  • Drinking: Red Wine
As you may have noticed a lack of photos since february/march. I do apologise.

I got a call in the evening after work from the people who sponsered my trip to Bhutan last year telling me they had submitted my report for an award. Turns out I came out on top and am £500 better off.

"The trustees felt that your photographs were impressive and reflected the culture, flora and habitats of Bhutan"

I think I should probably share some more of the shots from Bhutan in that case.
  • Listening to: Thrice
  • Reading: Bones of the Master - again!
  • Watching: NCIS - well i will be
  • Playing: my guitar intermittently
  • Eating: Snazzy crisps
  • Drinking: Cairn O' Mhor elderberry wine - good it is too!
So I am back from a selfimposed exile from deviant. I've been busy with work commitments and Phd planning which looks like its a go'er. mmmm 3 more years of dossing about.

I decided my "hard" earned cash should be spent on something other than Deuchars so i've been snowboarding, husky sleding and snowshoeing in Finnish Lapland. Thats in the arctic circle don't you know!. I'm back with a shed load of pictures, a couple of bruised knees and a stiff neck.

Blinkin' cold it was too!

NCIS time and a bottle of wine. epic.
well i have gone back to being a slack son-numb-bitch when it comes to here.

i havent been inspired to take pretty pictures lately. i still have a fat wad of pics from bhutan i havent done anyting with because of work/drinking commitments. shocking.

i spent today at a symposium and i was first to present my research to the thang. i am gald i was first because in the grand scheme of peeeps research mine was rubbish. oh well.

i start a - i was gonna say new job but job full stop is more accurate - job on monday.

we shall see what that i imagine.

Well I am back

So much has happened in the past three weeks. Bhutan is on the whole beautiful and unspoiled.

I can't do it justice so I wont try.

I loved that for the best part of the trip I saw no cars, pylons or any of the associated paraphernalia of modern living.

I'm currently in the post trip doldrums and do miss the bhutanese guys greatly.

I have to write a report for my funders and anyone who wants to read it please let me know

Suppose I had best get back to it....
I am off down to Englandshire and London tomorrow for the first leg of the journey to Bhutan.

I am excited and tired and stressed and happy and sad and well yes.

I purposefully didnt go out for a drink with people tonight because i'd get all miserable and then shitty with them and I didnt want that.

I'll bring you back some photos and some prayers

Buddha's compassion go with you
  • Listening to: Radio 1
  • Drinking: Coffee
Well in 14 days I'll be in Katmandu before the onward flight to Bhutan. The fear has taken hold this weekend. Wtf am I playing at!?!?! Lots of what ifs going through my head.

I have been staring at my diamox and antibiotic wondering if I'll need them. Acute Mountain Sickness yeah i can see myself getting that - great.

Went for a 10mile walk this morning around bits of Edinburgh.

Trying unsuccesffuly to re-write parts of my dissertation to be published in Sibbalia - too distracted with the stupid butterflies in my guts and putin pics on here.

Back to it...
Here's to you
  • Listening to: The printer 'churr-gurr-in!' away
  • Reading: What i just wrote
  • Eating: Walkers sensations Balsamic vinegar and summ'it
  • Drinking: Fairtrade decaf tea (check me out no caffeen)
Well I am currently printing out my dissertation and a feeling somewhere between utterly relieved and completely gutted.


Next and final thing to do is the digital appendage...

a wee dram shall be had before the night is out.
Well I've had an amazing weekend working at an arboretum in the Angus glens doing survey work and mapping.

We stayed in the plushest bunkhouse known to man, had a pleasant 30min stroll to work over the hill and down to the arboretum taking in some amazing scenery.

Saw buzzards, a red kite, a merlin (i think) and a pair of golden eagles.

I love being back in my beloved glens I always leave feeling like everything is fine.
  • Listening to: cell by The Servant
  • Playing: Grand Tourismo 4
  • Drinking: Royal Lochnagar
1.Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, and find line 4.

"'Bread and shoes politic'as he once described it to me, a responce to the families depression with neither shoes on their feet or bread to eat."

More From our Own Correspondent

2.Stretch your left arm out as far as you can. What do you reach?
My glass of Royal Lochnagar 12yr old single malt

3. What is the last thing you watched on TV?

4. Without looking, guess what time it is:

5. Now look at the clock. What is the actual time?

6. With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?
The dull beat of dance music from a not so distant party

7. When did you last step outside? What were you doing?
Today at home to water my children

8. Before you started this survey, what did you look at?
my feet

9. What are you wearing?
nothing worthy of note

10. Did you dream last night?

11. When did you last laugh?
during Ncis

12. What are on the walls of the room you are in?
Mirrors and African art from Tanzania.

13. Seen anything weird lately?
My reflection

14. What do you think of this quiz?
I wish I had gone to bed

15. What is the last film you saw?

16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy?
An island on the west coast of Scotland then retire to a become a recluse

17. Tell me something about you that I don't know about.
I discovered four more grey hairs atop my head

18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?
I would stop the process that created oil and instead have it form jellybeans

19. Do you like to dance?

20. George Bush:
Evolution in action: the missing link. God Bless America

21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her?

22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him?

23. Would you ever consider living abroad?
Hell yes!! Turkey, New Zealand, Bhutan, Nepal, Japan

24. What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gates?
I'm dreadfully sorry old bean but you appear to have to taken a wrong turn.

25.Tag six people who must also do this in THEIR journal:
Decide amongst yourselves
  • Listening to: Russel Brand
  • Reading: Quest of Flowers
  • Watching: BBC news
  • Playing: GTA3 classified as a retrogame. No C64 games are
  • Eating: Gnocchi
  • Drinking: Council Juice
So I am so freakin lazy when it come to being a deviant.

I have a backlog of a few ahemahem hundred (maybe more) deviations to look at. countless journals to read. piss poor alan piss poor.

All I have to report is my new obsession with my grey wait its not new its a resurgence in my obsession with them.

Been finishing coursework, working on my dissertation, doing GIS work generally no being on here.

Off to Branklyn tomorrow to 'do some research' so that'll be a jolly to Perth then drinkin cups of tea with Steve and Eddie not doing anything resembling productive.

Still i get to ride the train - choo choo
  • Reading: Quest of Flowers
  • Watching: BBC news
  • Drinking: water
This mornings Metro horoscope

"Your itchy feet aren't going to be soothed by the day-to-day routines; you're craving excitement and travel. If you can't drop everything and head to the Himalaya, at least try to sweep the...."

Nows is as good a time as any.

I'm off to Bhutan in June.