Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Arrived home on New Years Day

We flew back to Sydney over New Years Eve. The flight was pretty fun. The hosties wore party hats and gave us a glass of champagne. We got to celebrate the ushering in of 2006 a number of times since we crossed multiple time zones. We arrived in Sydney on the hottest day ever recorded in Sydney. It was still hovering around forty degrees when we landed in the early evening. Coming from a European winter, it was a shock to the system. It felt like walking into an oven when we left the air conditioning of the airport and headed to the car park. A southerly blew in at around 9pm and cooled everything down. What a relief!

The last few days have been spent settling in, recovering from jetlag and enjoying time with the dogs. We're looking after an extra one for a week until Sarah's parents return from the UK.

I've decided to officially call my holiday over at the end of this week and will start to get back into PhD research from next Monday. I've hardly thought about my research for about a month with all the travels and celebrations but I feel it's time to get going on it again.

The only study related work I did during my one month off was finish off the book review I had started in Copenhagen. I sent it off to the editor of the Japanese Studies journal just before Christmas.

I've been doing some research on same sex adoption laws in Australia. My partner and I have talked about having a child but we haven't come to a decision about it yet. Meanwhile we've both being doing research on the topic in our own ways. The issue triggered me into looking into what kind of legal protection the non-biological parent would have in Australia and I was shocked to discover how backward our laws are. Perhaps I wasn't shocked. In many respects, particularly when it comes to gay and lesbian rights, Australia has fallen behind the rest of the world. There are now five other countries that have passed laws recognising same sex marriage. Can you guess which ones they are? You might be surprised... The relevant legislation in Australia that I'm concerned about is the Marriage Act and the Adoption laws.

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