A cloudy day on the Great Ocean Road last year. I was solo road tripping from Melbourne to Adelaide and stopped in Portland, Victoria for some food before driving up to the cliff side lookout of the Bridgewater Blowholes. It started pouring rain just as I arrived, so I ate my sandwich in the car and hoped the weather would clear long enough for me to walk out to the ridge and have a look. I got my wish in the end and had the place – all moody and gloomy under clouds – to myself for a few long moments.
“Sometimes you sound like one of those precocious characters in movies who are wise beyond their years.”
“But I’m not always right.”
“You have been so far.”
“I’ve been wrong plenty of times. If you thought I wasn’t wrong in those instances, it’s because you wanted me to be right.”
“…you just did it again.”
Yesterday I finished the hard part of my ‘pre’ data collection (this photo is, in fact, part of that data). For the first time in my PhD candidature, I can see the finish line with total clarity. 30 October, y’all.
Doing a PhD seems big when considered in the aggregate, but it’s actually just an unusually long series of small steps. One step at a time tends to get the job done.
Many of those small moments are thresholds, the crossing of which being worth celebrating. Finishing a draft, completing an article. Selfishly: the first time you cite yourself 😂. But there’s rarely time to stop and properly soak it in. The next step is always waiting.
From today, the next three months will be the busiest such period of my life. Along the way there will (hopefully) be much to celebrate, but I’ll have to contain my excitement.