This was the weekend of 'THE CONFERENCE' and 'THE PRESENTATION'.
One of the elements of Desiree's Research Fellowship was placement ('hosting', they call it) at the Stout Research Centre at Victoria University. She was part of the Scottish and Irish Studies Programme.
And they were hosts this year of a conference - Ireland and the Irish Antipodes: One World or Worlds Apart?
Part of the deal with the Centre was that Desiree would present a paper at the Conference. So she was given the final slot in one of the streams - on Sunday, just before the closing comments.
Consequently, the past couple of weeks has been fairly focussed for her. She put together a couple of versions of her 'story' - what she has been researching, and what she has found. She also found an interesting selection of images to use.
It all came together well, which then brought us to the Conference itself. We both went to the Opening, which was an interesting dissertation by Sir Tipene O'Regan - a gifted orator, who is aging and lost his train of thought a couple of times, but is experienced enough to recover. Fluent, circuitous and thought-provoking. This was followed by a reception hosted by the Irish Embassy from Canberra.
Desiree attended the Friday sessions, and then she came out to the Club, where were joined by the First Secretary from the Embassy. Orla Tunney was substituting for the Ambassador, who had family commitments to attend. A pleasant relaxing evening.
We both went to the Saturday and Sunday sessions, and Desiree went to the Dinner at the Victoria University Marae. Interestingly, we chose to attend different streams, reflecting our respective interests. I went to the papers delivered by the 'geneologists', Desiree to those delivered by the 'academics'.
Which brought us to Sunday, and Desiree was on tenterhooks, but having to wait until the final slot, at 1.30pm.
Let me put you out of your misery - Desiree's presentation went well, and was well received.
You can see what I mean at www.huttirish.org.nz/desiree.html.
As a matter of interest, the presentation includes a photo of her grandmother, who also gets a mention. Desiree was wearing the locket seen in the photo, but it now has this same photo as the insert. So Rose was along to make sure Desiree didn't malign her! And to lend support, of course.