Summer is a weird thing for Finnish people. We start waiting for it from Christmas, when the days actually start to grow longer. Everyone keeps commenting on the amount of daylight with a surprising tone, as something that would not happen every year. In May Facebook starts to fill out with countdowns to holidays and the first warm days arrive. Tourists are still wearing winter clothes, but we Finns celebrate the +15°C in shorts and t-shirts. Yay, for the sun! Yay, for the warmth! June is commonly known as cold, but do we dress ourselves according to the degrees? No. It’s June, so it’s summer, which means sandals and bare (white!) legs, tops and linen shirts. It doesn’t matter, that everyone feels freezing cold, waiting for the bus to arrive, since it’s summer (goddammit!).
Midsummer’s is a huge thing here as well. Finnish people celebrate the bright night, even if it means freezing on a beach, watching a bonfire that is guarded with a string fence and guards. (Like we would spontaneously jump into the fire, seeking for the warmth that lacks in your limbs, marinated in alcohol!) Every year people die in stupid accidents, which are alcohol and water related (“yay, let’s see how far I can swim this intoxicated that I can’t even see my legs straight! yay!). But we do love our summer.
Then it’s July already and most of the people are spending their holidays. Besides this PhD student. Are we actually entitled for a holiday? Of course, although it doesn’t say that in the grant application. “I will be working 11 months and use 1 month as a holiday”. Nope, you can’t say that. You must be productive and make science, for heaven’s sake. Science doesn’t appear on itself when you are lying on a grass, barefoot and thinking about the shapes of clouds you are watching. Or does it?
The past couple of years there has been articles and researches about the brains becoming overloaded with all the information available and how brains do not acquire new knowledge when overloaded. Social media has been one element, since it doesn’t actually allow the brains to rest, when work halts during notification checks. On the contrary. Also, previously scientific discoveries took years and years of research, not six months as the current academic funding climate assumes.
I have been on a small ten-day holiday already. And there’s more to come in August. I’m taking it easy this July too. Wow. How bad of me. How can I do that? Doesn’t my work suffer? Doesn’t it postpone my graduation? Maybe, possibly, don’t really know. I’m trying to teach myself new ways of working as well. Less stress, more results. Time, rush, shouldn’t be the issue on everything, as the Finnish proverb goes hiljaa hyvää tulee (good comes taking it easy).
But still, my mind is surprised, that it’s July already! My mind is still somewhere early May and doesn’t comprehend how quickly the weeks fly by. Still need some cloud recognizing time for myself..