Monday, 23 April 2012

Back in the ol' routine

Things I've learned today:
  • Researching in a Presidential archive is better second time round - I really enjoyed my day's research today and got much more out of it than on my last visit to Abilene. This time round, rather than just grabbing anything related to 'space', I know what I'm after. I'm looking for links that draw the key 'helping hands' together in the Eisenhower/space policy story. And, after about five boxes of Bissell material, I've teased out quite a lot of stuff that will be useful in the thesis.
  • It's impossible to look at research materials for eight hours straight. This kind of research demands breaks - a walk to the local cafe (great for overhearing gossip) at lunchtime; a walk to the local store to buy a drink. Otherwise, I stop seeing seeing what's in front of me when I'm reading documents late in the day.
  • It's better to do fewer boxes thoroughly than try to cover everything in the library. Last time round I 'covered' 18 boxes one  day. Today I did five - and got far more out of them.
  • Don't talk religion or politics around this town. The people are wonderfully warm and welcoming  here - but I don't think there are too many sharing my liberal views.   

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