A Day in the Life of my PhD Corrections and Ice Cream Coffee


A Day in the Life of my PhD Corrections

1. Pray.

2. Open the 300-ish page book in French to the place I got up to last night.

3. Open my draft corrections Word document and Google Translate (no need to turn the computer on because I didn’t actually turn it off last night).

4. Start trying to read the French book and feel really proud when I get through two pages and only have to look up the meaning of five words.

5. The French suddenly dissolves into something completely unintelligible. Despair at lack of knowledge of French, despite having an O’level in French and more than three years of French scholarly article and book reading experience. Resort to typing whole paragraphs into Google Translate (and realise that over-reliance on Google Translate may account for lack of proficiency in French).

6. Think about the ice cream coffee planned for a lunchtime treat. How will I get through the next hour before it is 12 and I feel I can legitimately have a lunch break?

7. French suddenly starts to make sense again. Stop typing whole paragraphs into Google Translate and feel proud when manage to read five pages and only need to look up the meaning of a handful of words.

8. Regret leaving the French book for last and wish I’d started reading (and translating) it the day after my viva. Persist with reading the French (aided by Google Translate).

9. Hooray – it is LUNCHTIME! Make the delicious concoction below and take a 15 minute break to let the caffeine work its way through body before starting the above process again…

Ice Cream Coffee

I really wanted to call this coffee ice cream, but felt I couldn’t because that would imply that it is coffee ice-cream rather than coffee and ice cream. This is great for when you want a little pick-me-up that combines your next caffeine fix with a sweet treat. As you may be able to tell, my corrections are driving me slightly mad, but hopefully normal service will resume soon, when I’ve finished them and had some sleep… I should add that whilst I wish I had come up with the idea of pouring hot coffee over ice cream, I did not – I’ve seen it on at least one or two TV cookery shows, such as in an episode of Jamie Oliver’s Jamie’s 30-Minute Meals. The toasted hazelnuts, however, came directly from the desires of my tastebuds. And yes, the floor really is my preferred study location – it is much easier to spread out that way.

What you’ll need:

A shot of hot proper coffee

A couple of scoops of your favourite ice cream (I went for vanilla)

A handful of toasted hazelnuts

What to do:

1. Put the ice cream into a bowl (preferably one that is heat-resistant, to avoid any potential problems when you add the hot coffee).


2. Pour the coffee over the top of the ice cream.



3. Sprinkle the whole thing liberally with toasted hazelnuts.



4. Enjoy a moment of bliss before returning to PhD corrections (or whatever else you need a break from!)


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