So much has happened since March when I last posted, and yet I feel little has really changed. I can't blame my schedule for not posting, despite the fact that I was, until two weeks ago, working full-time 5 days a week, then spending my two days off at uni, and trying to fit some form of social life and sleep around both. Truth be told, when it came to free time, I couldn't focus on writing, and just wanted to sleep or act like a zombie. So what have I been up to?
My time at Mantra came to a close at the end of March, something that I was both relieved and saddened by. I loved the place, and the people, but the ridiculously late nights, hardly seeing The Muso, and generally trying to live that way was killing me. At the time, I was quite annoyed at not managing to save more money while I was what I thought was amazing money, but looking back, I realise that a lot of it was the unavoidable consequence of having no kitchen. I was very lucky that I managed to pick up another job in Geelong that I could walk straight into at the start of April, at Le Parisien, a French restaurant on the waterfront in Geelong. An interesting job that presented its own unique challenges, some days it was hugely rewarding, others I went home, threw myself into bed, and didn't want to move. Crazy weekend dinner shifts would be topped off by visits to either Mr Hyde or Opium Bar, with copious amounts of alcohol and bad fast-food. This time, I'm seriously annoyed I didn't save more money, and I know full well I could have if I'd actually tried to. Anyway, Great place, great food, great people, but in mid-August my time there came to a close. Why?
I was finally granted a scholarship for my PhD studies. This is, of course, awesome, though I did have a mini meltdown at the time ("Why do I have to make a decision on the next 5 years of my life right NOW?"), but after some careful thought, and a good rant to the Mumma-lady, I resolved that a career in hospitality would always be there, but this research opportunity wouldn't. As a result, I've recently had my photo in the local paper, and our research has had a write up or two on the web. In fact, I just discovered THIS! Actually, the more I look, the more I find, so just Google "cancer cachexia". Apparently our research page topped the cancer hit rating for a whole 2 hours on Thursday morning when the media release was, well, released. The story even got picked up on twitter by people I don't even know! I don't know about anyone else, but I'm impressed. It probably comes across when you read the article, but I really think our research could make a difference in the lives of cancer patients, and I'm glad I can finally start working on it full time again, and give it the attention it deserves. Whilst I didn't particularly want my photo in the paper, I DO want to get the message out there, and raise awareness of what is a serious, but generally unpublicised condition.
With the move back to full-time study, and the fact that whilst wonderful, the scholarship will hardly cover rent and bills let alone food and transport, I've started a weekend job at one of my favourite hang-outs, Mr Hyde. They've welcomed me with open arms, and helped make the transition from regular customer to occasional employee an easy one. I love that I'm working somewhere that I love to be, the atmosphere, the people, the ridiculously yummy drinks, and the delicious food. Funnily enough, working in the environment I would usually play in has cut my alcohol consumption dramatically, of which my liver is no doubt thankful. Let's see how long it lasts!
So yes, my life since March has essentially consisted of work and university, with the occasional party thrown in to ease the stress. I'm sure other things that happened will crop up here and there (like my unnatural obsession with making cupcakes). I will now endeavour to return to the scheduled format that I had all nicely planned out at the beginning of this year!
Love Neysa xo