Summer time, and the living is?

I think perhaps I and every other Phd student I have met to date, has/had fantastic plans for increased summer productivity.  Well at least for me, despite the cooperative and miserable weather, the results have been disappointing.

That's not to say I have not done a bit.  I dealt with my doctoral panel, and have got a reasonable start on my literature review on participatory democracy, however I don't have a deep sense of satisfaction that that nut has been cracked... far from it.  And I do feel a bit disappointed with myself.

So what went wrong? What happened to the long endless summer days, filled with books, journal articles, and my yellow highlighter (albeit a virtual one)?

Well first, I got to May and the end of the course work and assignments, and I was really really tired.  It was a long slog between January and May, and we ended up travelling a good bit in June, so I took a very legitimate break.

July and August?  Not too sure, a few things going on there:

  1. Fell into the perennial trap of assuming these months would be blissfully long with loads of spare time, shockingly they were just as short as any other month.
  2. Monday is my core PhD day, and this may sound a bit lame, but there are a lot of bank holidays over the summer!
  3. We had a bunch of visitors - not really the done thing to slope off with the books when you are supposed to be entertaining.
  4. A very long Danish murder mystery series called 'The Killing' - 20 episodes... enough said!
  5. I was still tired.

The last week has been much better though, think I just had to reconcile myself with more realistic expectations.

Still planning on getting that draft lit review on democracy done for October though, and looking forward to getting back into the swing of term.

The living is not easy, but it is interesting, varied and satisfying... next year though I might just remind myself that there are 30 days in June, 31 in July and 31 in August.  It is the summer, not a parallel  temporal reality.