Monday, March 15, 2004

Re-reading my Weblog Review (go on, read it; indulge me) I noticed Kacroon’s comment about there being no ‘About’ page here, and it’s something I’ve been thinking about for some time. I’m planning a redesign when I have the time in the summer, but for now I thought I’d write some frequently requested answers.

So, lets start with the pictures: where did you learn?
Nowhere. I’ve learnt everything just by looking at other stuff; only recently have I started reading a book on (digital) photography. The father of an ex-girlfriend of mine was a professional and he once I told me that I had a good eye for photography and that I should build on that. I didn’t for some time but now I’ve got a digital that I can adjust manually I’m learning fast.

Do you edit the pictures?
I didn’t use to, but a few recently have been. I’ve been teaching myself Photoshop whilst my camera’s been out of action, which is one good thing about the sodding thing breaking. Have a look at these two of Lake Bled in north-western Slovenia:

The one above is as I took it, the one below is Photoshop-ed.

Nice. When did you go to Slovenia?
In December ’03, for a long weekend. See the mid-December entries for more.

So, why did you start the blog?
First, ‘cause I wanted to write regularly, and see what I could do in that regard (I made a small foray into trying to start a novel earlier this year. If you want to read where I got to then just drop me a mail and ask, but don’t expect too much). Second, it’s a good way of keeping my friends at home close; much better than an email once every few weeks.

Ah. So you’ve only been in Verona since last October?
Yeah, but I taught English beforehand, a few years ago, on my travels in South America and after in Brighton. I decided to return to the industry last year after deciding that I didn’t want to continue in the career I started in the meantime (designing and writing e-learning training courses).

So this is your new career?
No. It’s something that I enjoy doing, and that I’m currently doing while I sort out what I really want to with my life.

Which is?
Academia. The process of coming to that decision started a couple of years ago, but now it’s made. The only questions that remain are the details: what exactly to study, where, and when, and I’m close to making those decisions.

Assuming I get on, I’ll should be starting an MSc in The Evolution of Cognition and Language in Edinburgh, in September. The intention is that this will lead to a PhD a year later. I’d like to jump straight into the PhD, but my undergraduate degree is in Maths, so I feel I need to do a Masters to transfer over.

Hmm. So you’ll be leaving Verona?
It looks that way. I may yet decide to defer entry to the MSc., although I’d say that’s unlikely at the moment. If I do, I may stay here, or I may head someplace else, specifically Napoli (if I stay in Italy) or Japan. But I want to get on with the MSc., and my thinking at the moment is to do just that.

Ok. Now, why Verona?
Good question. The plan was actually to go to Bologna, for a combination of reasons: European, a good climate, near mountains, the right size, and a frisbee team (there are only 12 in Italy). Unfortuantely I was messed around by a school there that said they had a job for me, but didn’t. By then other schools had recruited for this academic year, so I came to Verona in a bit of a panic. All has turned out ok though. Verona’s lovely, and the only thing that’s missing is a frisbee team.

Yeah, or Ultimate Frisbee to give it it’s whole name. If you’ve never heard of it then whatisultimate.com is the best place to start. Basically it’s a very fast, very athletic seven-a-side team sport, best described as a cross between American Football and Netball, but with a frisbee.

Hmm. Other interests?
Too many to mention. I do five sports, but at no point have I found myself in a position to do all five regularly: circumstance dictates which ones take priority. For example, this winter has had a lot of skiing and a little football, but no frisbee, canoeing or mountain biking. Other interests are wide and varied, but include film, cooking, the latest tribulations of the England cricket team, and photography (obviously).

Now, are there any other questions?

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