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Outside of science

Some scientists have a life outside of science. No, I’m being serious. Here are a few of the reasons I enjoy my evenings and weekends so much.

I adore swimming and my absolute dream is to swim the Channel. If you’re reading this blog and you have access to a pilot boat then email me right away and what are we waiting for?! I usually make do with my busy local pool. I particularly enjoy annoying the OAPs of a morning, who decide to swim 8-abreast whilst having a good old natter. I’m not a nasty person… but I do have a little chuckle. Here I am, aged 6, gracefully learning to dive. No photoshop here – that really is me mid-bellyflop. I am now a compenent swimmer/diver and even have the badges to prove it. Yeah.

I’m an amateur astronomer.  As with all great passions, mine stemmed from the Argos catalogue. My parents bought me a telescope from Argos in the mid-90s when I developed a love of the solar system during a school physics project. It was only supposed to be a 1500-word essay but I ended up going round science museums, speaking to experts and spending hours in libraries. I had discovered something amazing and nothing was going to stop me learning more.  What resulted was a 96-page tome, much praise from my physics teacher and RSI in my right hand. Times have moved on but my fascination hasn’t dwindled. I’ve upgraded to this beast now and enjoy sharing what I see with the world via my Twitter page (@JoannaBuckley).

I also like a damn good fell walk and I love the Lakeland Fells, particularly the Northern ones which aren’t as well climbed. It also gives you a fine excuse to pose like a wally when you reach the top. And I need no encouragement to play the fool.


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