Well, finally I have a date for my second panel, the progression panel, the one which I have been trying hard to think of as just another hoop that needs to be jumped through. 14th August. I have produced an abstract, bibliography and a draft chapter plan, and a rough plan of what I intend to do over the next twelve months. I’ve also produced a training log, and a couple of lines about what training I may need next year. The chapter on queenship in the ballads needs a bit of a re-write, but I’m trying to have a break from it for a bit longer so that I can come back to it reasonably fresh to look at it with a bit of detachment.

But there are a couple of major obstacles facing me. In the same few days as I have my panel, I will be moving house, so I spent this morning trying to do some packing. My poor, beloved books are being ruthlessly sorted through to get rid of things that I won’t have room for. It’s a deeply distressing experience. It’s not as if I’ve ever read some of them, or indeed am ever likely to, but the fact that I knew where they were IF I ever needed to consult them was very comforting. At the moment there are 5 carrier bags sitting in my hall waiting to go to the charity shop on Monday morning.

The other obstacle comes in the form of my children, who are all now at home for the summer holidays. One problem is that I like working in the garden when the weather is nice; they also like to play in the garden making as much noise as humanly possible (which I can assure you is a LOT). They are lovely, and I love them to bits, but let’s face it, a panel meeting in the middle of August is not the most family-friendly of occurences. I agreed to it simply because I was hoping to get it out of the way before the house move… but it also had the advantage of allowing my main (temporary) supervisor to be there. She starts maternity leave in September, and as yet there is no news of what happens to me when she leaves.