Friday, 29 June 2007

I'm funded :)

Just received word from Norway that Iceland needs to prepare its letter of employment for me... It's getting realer! (It's more Germanic to use the morphological comparative form than the analytic French loan 'more real'.) Not yet sure how much I'll get paid, the maximum amount Norway has to give Iceland for me is 568,000 Nok (69,270 Euro), which includes "the university’s gross salary for a researcher in your country, social costs, overhead costs and general expenses". So I guess I'll be getting about half of that. Wonder what 35k Euro will buy in Iceland?

Monday, 25 June 2007

Gone walkabout: one Icelander

The email I just got from Norway says:
"I just heard he is hiking around Mt. Blanc, wherever that is. Things do slow down a little in Scandinavia in June, at least around the universities. I am sure he'll get back to you soon after he returns."
So, I guess there'll be no exciting updates until the Icelander checks back in to civilisation...

Saturday, 16 June 2007

no word from iceland yet., but icelandic improving..

Emailed head dude in Norway again yesterday, to find out why the guy in Iceland hasn't contacted me yet. Surely they're back from their fieldwork by now?!

In better news though, I'm working my way through the Icelandic Online course at a great rate of knots. I think I'm going to be okay at reading and hearing Icelandic, but useless at the actual talking. One of my salsa dance teachers last night mentioned that autistic guy who 'learnt Icelandic in 10 days' - I'll do some investigation and find out how much he learnt, and which languages he already spoke!

Sunday, 10 June 2007

To subscribe to my blog, so you'll know when I've added stuff

1. From gmail click on the arrow next to MORE, then select READER.

2. There is a drag-n-drop bookmark that you can put in your bookmarks toolbar. It shows up as 'Next >>'

3. When you're at a blog or page with the little RSS icon, or a page you think you'll want to follow from a distance, push the subscribe button. Then push SUBSCRIBE TO THIS FEED once you're inside GReader.

Easy peasy. (thanks brent!)

Wednesday, 6 June 2007

learning icelandic!

Have spent a couple of hours starting to learn Icelandic, thanks to the fabulous free online course which tönchen pointed out to me at It's really a lot of fun! I've been using the translator occasionally from, but on the whole the course is brilliant!

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

shout it to the world!

I've told just about everyone I can think of now! The guy who offered me the postdoc is happy that I can rework my original proposal, and is also happy if I start in November, and skip the August grand meeting. I can meet the other members of the project later on anyway - turns out it'd cost around $5,000 to fly to Iceland for the week in August, but prices drop to about $2,000 in November (thanks Justine at Flight Centre). What, no-one wants to have a holiday entirely in the dark?

L seems to be getting places with his investigations, S is happy to live in our lovely house while we're away (if not, A can). All that's missing is an email from the guy who's head of the Icelandic Linguistics department to acknowledge that I'm coming! Oh, and an official letter of offer, but I'm guessing that will have to include details about starting dates and salary and benefits and such like, which would involve this guy having emailed...

Monday, 4 June 2007

I'm going to Iceland!

I applied for a postdoc back in January, to be part of a pan-Scandinavian project. I wrote a proposal for Lund and a proposal for Oslo. Heard nothing until suddenly at the start of May, when I received an email saying I was ranked 5th of 7 applicants, for 5 positions, and feel free to comment on the ranking before a final decision was made. I commented, then panicked slightly, since this is not normal procedure in Australia, and god knows whether I'd commented 'correctly'!

I had made up my mind to wait until June before I asked what the final decision was, but for the last week in May I found myself checking my email an inordinate number of times, and decided I needed to email them straightaway! I then got a response, saying a person ranked ahead of me had been offered the Oslo position (her first preference), and if I could imagine myself in Reykjavik, then they'd welcome me aboard. Hmm. Can I really imagine myself in Reykjavik?? Not yet, but I've been trying very hard, and I think I'm starting to!

So I wrote a reponse 'That's very exciting', and heard back 'That's very positive'. All very hedgy, but still kind of solid. L is now looking to see if he can get a job there while I'm there, my cousin is coming to Melbourne for 12 months for her PhD and may be able to live here (in our house), and the world seems very full of possible happy conjunctions