At the moment I have no life. OK, the ‘at the moment’ is debatable, but my days currently are spent almost exclusively in the British Library wearing my (two) typing fingers down to stumps writing up the new book ahead of the deadline at the end of next month.
It’s quite strange sitting there in the library with a pile of maps and my notebooks, retracing the rainy, sleety, haily, toe-breaking, knee-wrenching yomps I’ve been making in the quiet of the noble seat of learning at St Pancras. No roar of traffic in my ears, no startled pheasants frightening the life out of me by rocketing out of the hedgerows, no patter of rain on the waterproofs and no nagging pain in my right knee that’s been an almost constant travelling companion for this book.
I think I’m becoming an academic snob though. Which is odd, because I’d have thought that to be any kind of snob you have to have some kind of qualification to look down on people. Either way, the decision to let undergraduates into the sacred reading rooms has led to a definite decline in working conditions. Most days this week have been a constant parade of flirting, whispering, giggling and almost constant text-messaging. And when I’ve stopped doing all that I’ve noticed the undergraduates are doing the same thing. It’s not on.
Right, off I go again. Be good, play nicely.