It is done. It is handed in. It is over, kaput, no more. I have finally completed my MSc and I am back to Blogging! Hoorah!
After 2 years of hard work, brain ache, fieldwork in Laos, dramas, illness and craziness, I have written my 18,000 word thesis dissertation and UCL are now in possession of my final piece of academic work (well, that is, until I am crazy enough to do a PhD).
The past 6 weeks have been incredibly intense as I researched literature, analysed data, and wrote until my fingers bled*. My brain ached from all the thinking, my back was sore from sitting at my desk for 18 hours a day, and my health deteriorated from my over-reliance on cans of coca-cola**. There would be days upon days when I would not leave the house, and my outfits revolved around different versions of pyjamas. Quite frankly, I was a scary sight to behold.
On Thursday I was up at the crack of dawn finishing the final chapter, sorting out the formatting and making the document look pretty, before sending it off to print. I then dashed down to London on an over-priced Virgin train (I cannot begin to tell you how angry these prices make me) to pick up the 90 plus pages of 2 years work to hand in to the UCL Anthropology Department Postgraduate Administrator. I have the moment caught on camera for posterity.
I cannot begin to tell you how amazing I feel; I was jumping for joy after hand-in. This Master’s degree has been, without doubt, the most challenging thing I have ever done. I have been challenged mentally, physically and emotionally. I have encountered some amazing people, and some horrendous people. And I live to tell the tale. There were moments when I honestly thought I could not make it – I was sure I had to give up. But somehow, with the support of my incredible family, boyfriend and friends I got my brain into a place where it worked and I have strung together 18,000 words of academic-ness. Oh yeah, I is well educated innit?!
So there we have it. I have completed my Master’s degree. I am very proud of myself. I overcame challenges and made it happen. I feel on top of the world!
Thank you, Blog readers, for all your support over the past year or so. Your constant encouragement and positivity has motivated me so much. And now for the next chapter of my life…
P.S. If you are at all interested in the title of my thesis it is:
Poverty, Development and Sustainable Tourism: Assessing Participation of the Poor in the Luang Prabang Night Market in Lao PDR