Hey everyone! It has been almost two months since I last posted. If anyone has been wondering why, it is because I have been going through the very long and complicated process of moving across Canada! Not only would it be complicated doing such a far move under normal circumstances, but during a pandemic??? Let’s just say, I’m glad it is over.
Back in January and February I had begun the process of trying to find a university and lab to do my PhD in. Two years ago in 2018 I graduated with my MSc, and had always known that I would continue on to my PhD. My area of research has mainly involved evolution and morphology in marine invertebrates, and in particular, marine snails. When I saw a posting advertising a PhD position that would involve working with marine snails that live around underwater volcanoes (how cool! Also, more formally, hydrothermal vents), I knew that it was a pretty good fit for my research interests. I had also been long wanting to leave my home town, with my top choice being moving to somewhere in Atlantic Canada. This position in particular was in St. John’s, Newfoundland, which was a city that I had visited two years ago for a conference, so I had already seen the university campus and the basic tourist spots. So, I responded to the position in St. John’s, was accepted by the lab, and then the pandemic hit.
This PhD position was very much a light at the end of a two year long tunnel for me. When I graduated from my MSc I had an extremely difficult time finding a job in my field, and had to resort to taking whatever jobs I could get. In particular, jobs that I found soul-crushing. This in combination with not working towards any particular goals, I fell into a pretty deep depression. When I found out about this PhD position, this seemed like my opportunity to get back on track and again work towards a future I wanted to have. However, like most people, everything went completely up in the air in March. I lost one of my jobs, lost a great upcoming job opportunity for May-June (which would have set my move up perfectly) and my acceptance to the university was put on hold. Long story short, after fighting very hard and jumping through more hoops than seemed possible, I managed to get accepted to the university and move to St. John’s in August.
As far as long moves go, I’m sure mine was fairly typical. To give you an idea of the scope, I was moving from the extreme west coast of BC to the extreme east coast of Newfoundland. That’s a 79 hour drive, 7,000+ KM, 4400+ miles, which is why I flew!! Because of this I got rid of most of my belongings. I did end up shipping around 10 medium uHaul boxes, which cost a pretty penny but I do think it was worth it. One thing that I HAD to bring was all of my nail polish of course, which were lovingly wrapped in bubble wrap and ziploc’d. As far as I know, they all arrived alive, but I haven’t unpacked them yet as I am still in the process of building some display racks for them. I also brought my cats with me, of course, and they actually did surprisingly well. Unfortunately, I was only able to take one of them in the cabin with me, but we all survived! It was stressful for sure, because they are elderly (15), but they have adjusted really well and I’ll be happy to never fly them anywhere ever again.
When I arrived in St. John’s, I had to isolate for two weeks. It was brutal, but I found I got used to it fairly quickly. Ohhhh, was the freedom sweet on that first day out though. I’ve now been in my apartment for two weeks, and things are mostly set up. I’ve also had some time to do a bit of sightseeing. Newfoundland is home to some of the largest seabird colonies in North America, and I am a big bird watcher. So, I had to check out one of the major sights, which is Cape St. Mary’s. Right now a lot of the species have begun migration, but there were still a ton of Northern Gannets that you can see really up close. So here are some shots from around town and Cape St. Mary’s.
Now that I am mostly settled, I can’t wait to get back into blogging, wearing makeup and doing nail art! Things to look for that I have upcoming: swatches of Zoya Luscious Fall 2020 collection, review of Natasha Denona Glam palette, Polish Pickup hauls and a shit ton of nail art! I’ve missed you guys!