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[00:00:00]

Hello and welcome back to a proportional response podcast. Thank you for deciding to listen in. It's been quite a while and quite a lot has changed in the world since my last episode. I finished university and like many people, I have some free time on my hands. So I just jump back into recording these episodes. If you're interested in listening to more podcast to fill the void left by being unable to hang out with your friends, you can always follow my Instagram page, which is a proportional response where I've been posting weekly recommendations, which I really enjoy and I hope you'll enjoy to.

[00:00:39]

Today, my guest is Alice Watson. I was quite nervous going into a recording this episode after having such a long break between the last one, but she quickly put me at ease and we settled into what is a great conversation that started off by talking about her passion for golf.

[00:00:56]

Definitely had the hand eye coordination to to take up golf. But I had a brilliant, brilliant coach who made golf so fun when I was younger, Nick Prentice.

[00:01:06]

We then followed on by speaking about her studies at the University of St. Andrews on the University of Oxford, both highly regarded institutions and the possibility of her having an imposter syndrome while studying there.

[00:01:20]

But I think the main source of pressure was actually myself rather than the institution.

[00:01:26]

Finally, we can avoid not talking about podcasting, since Alice herself has a wonderful podcast called The Quarantine Diaries, which has new episodes on a weekly basis. And you can also find on my Instagram page, if you want to check it out, we chat about this and her experiences whilst at Oxford Radio Oxford College Castaway.

[00:01:47]

I did it because I enjoyed it and I thought what a brilliant opportunity to try my hand, dip my toe into the broadcasting world and speak with so many inspiring fellow students.

[00:01:59]

I'm really excited for you to listen to this one. So sit back and enjoy a conversation with Alice Watson.

[00:02:06]

OK, I'm here with Alice. How are you doing, Alice? I'm doing well. Thanks, Sean. How are you? I'm good.

[00:02:12]

Thank you for joining me so much. It's such a privilege to speak to a fellow broadcaster, even though there are so many of us, it seems that I don't actually know too many personally. So it's really, really nice that you agree to come on.

[00:02:26]

Well, likewise, it's such an honor to be here.

[00:02:28]

And also matching microphones, exactly when microphone panels here where we're of score goals here. But yeah, I thought I'd just jump into. Well, first of all, how are you doing with the whole coronavirus situation? How are you keeping what are you what are you getting up to to keep yourself busy?

[00:02:49]

Yes, I'm doing well, thanks not to you, but just kind of taking every day as it comes. Such a strange time, isn't it? I don't know about you, but it sort of goes in waves for me some days. Feel absolutely fine, quite enjoying actually being at home, just doing things I enjoy. Yeah. I'm sure we'll be getting on to this. I've got my PhD in the background, which is taking up the majority of my time.

[00:03:13]

But cooking. Podcasting. Yeah, like listening to podcasts, just generally pottering around, trying not to get too distracted by social media.

[00:03:23]

But it's yeah it's very tricky and likewise it comes and sort of peaks and troughs. And some days I wake up at 8am and I go for a run and I'll feel super productive and then I'll get stuff done. And then today I just sort of like slept until about a half ton of done pretty much nothing apart from sitting on my bed and listening to podcasts or watching YouTube or something. So, yeah, likewise it comes and comes and peaks and troughs and sort of way.

[00:03:53]

Maybe there's something in the atmosphere today because I also got up at quarter past ten today and generally lazed around.

[00:03:59]

So it's maybe just one of those days for all of us.

[00:04:05]

But yeah. So the first time we met is I know you through being good friends with my sister Andrea, first of all. And you were very, very generous and and helpful and you helped us sort out a birthday present for my dad. I'm not sure like what specifically you helped on, but I think it was so it's very difficult to get three times at the old course in St. Andrews, which, if people don't know, is probably one of the most famous golf courses in the world.

[00:04:39]

Am I right?

[00:04:40]

That's right.

[00:04:41]

Yeah, I would courses the most prestigious, very difficult to get tee times. As you say, you have to queue up usually five, six a.m. some ungodly hour to get a tee time. You're sometimes lumped with people that you don't know because there so few slowly.

[00:04:58]

But yeah. So you went to St Andrews University with my sister and you're part of the golf golf club team, I suppose. Yes. And you managed to help us in getting tickets or tickets.

[00:05:11]

But you're absolutely right. It's the to get to to play golf for my dad because he was a big golf player, big golf fan. So that was also a birthday present, the way you'd come and play a round of golf with him. And my uncle flew over from Paris and joined us and me and Andrea sort of carried a cathedral, rather, and gave advice when we thought it was appropriate that. It was a really, really great day.

[00:05:41]

We got incredible weather and I have such amazing memories of that day, I can remember as all stood on the first tee, we had our photo in front of the Royal and Ancient, which is the very famous building home of the rules of golf. And we went after after the round for a lovely meal in the Lynx clubhouse. Yeah.

[00:06:03]

And my first impressions of you were you were incredibly personable, like I'd feel like I'd known you for so long. Even the first time I met you just immediately came in and you're chatting away and yeah, it was fantastic the way so navigate what could be a sort of potentially weird situation where you just saw, like with the whole family group on a birthday, but you you were just fantastic. You felt like you were part of the family almost.

[00:06:30]

Oh, that's so nice of you to say. And likewise, same with you and Andrea. Me and Andrea always joke. Actually, I feel like I've known her forever or in a previous life. Yeah, same with you. We just get on chatting away and it was such a huge privilege to be invited along to your dad's dad's birthday celebrations. So I definitely have such fond memories of that day.

[00:06:53]

Aha.

[00:06:53]

Well, and also I remember that you played incredibly well off is the I mean you always sort of think St Andrews golf team, they've got to have got to have a pretty good game. But then you're always sort of like maybe against the seasoned veterans of my uncle and my and my dad. You never know. But no, you first t you absolutely smacked away and you didn't allow for the whole round. So that was really impressive to see as well.

[00:07:22]

Do you know what's really funny?

[00:07:24]

Because I think we played just after we come back after the holidays and I played really badly during the holidays. Oh yeah. And I remember I'd gone to my coach maybe three days before I was due to fly back up to St Andrews. And I said to him, look, I've got this birthday round with my friend's dad. It's his celebratory round on the old course. I can't play this badly. So I remember going to my coach in a real stress thinking I'm going to be on show here and I'm going to put in such a terrible thing.

[00:07:52]

But you're right, I did play well that day, which was a huge relief.

[00:07:57]

You can't hack it round the old course you got found out.

[00:08:01]

Yeah, it's not very forgiving in many ways, but that's a good sort of segway into what attracted you to a sport which is almost torturous in nature in some ways. And did it take you long to reach the sort of level that you've you've managed to achieve?

[00:08:19]

You've 100 percent captured it with the word torturous because it remains torturous however long you play it and whatever standard you get to one day, you can be you know, when your swing feels anyone who plays sport, you just feel really comfortable. Your timing's right. And you think I've mastered it. This is great. And then another day you come back and you think, have I ever picked up a golf club before?

[00:08:42]

This feels so alien. I hate this game. I'm never playing it again. So it's funny. And I have been playing it for such a long time since I was three, four years old.

[00:08:54]

Oh, wow. OK, so my first memory, I was thinking about this before coming on the podcast. Yeah. That apparently this is from my dad. I used to run into the bunkers as a three year old when I was very small because they were the beach. Yeah.

[00:09:10]

The sun I thought was so exciting. So I thought there was a beach on the golf course. So it always held that allure for sure. And I had little plastic golf clubs and I used to watch plastic balls around the golden and just go chasing after it. So that's when my earliest memories.

[00:09:26]

OK, game was that your dad, who was maybe a golf fan in your house that maybe gave you those there were some appraisers to sort of learn. Yes, for sure.

[00:09:38]

He is the golfer in the family. My mum's tried to learn to play over the years, but hasn't hasn't really had the time to take it up properly. But it was my dad who got me into it and gave me these these clubs. I remember him cutting down as I got older, cutting down full size sets, half size, progressing through lots of different clubs until I could eventually reach the big course and try my hand on the first tee.

[00:10:11]

I got lessons as a kid, did you sort of like get lessons as a kid with and sort of take two immediately, or was it sort of like a pain at the beginning or I mean, it sounds like you took to a pretty easy or not easily, but very quickly found an enjoyment from doing it?

[00:10:28]

I think so, yeah. I've always loved playing sport. I used to play tennis, hockey, netball, rounders, so definitely had the hand eye coordination to to take up golf. But I had a brilliant, brilliant coach who made golf so fun when I was younger. Nick Prentice up Hill Golf Club here in Seagrave, which sadly has closed because Leicester City Football Club have bought it for their new training ground. But that's a side story. But he made it so fun.

[00:10:57]

We used to go to the driving range, which Fenelon Golf is is the base, and you just hit lots of golf balls at targets used to get you chipping in to tyres hitting. You know, he used to stand in front of the golf bag and say, Alex, come on, you can you can chip it over my head. Oh, my goodness.

[00:11:13]

I mean, great. I just made all these fun challenges and I think that was so important.

[00:11:23]

Likewise, I went through Langstrom Rutland County set up, and they had this great competition for youngsters called the Flag 50 event, where it was just however far you could get in 50 shots and then you planted a flag.

[00:11:37]

So obviously the further you built that was the winner. But it was just such a lovely introduction to golf.

[00:11:43]

So I think that's so key for anyone getting into a sport. It has to be fun in the first instance.

[00:11:48]

Otherwise it can be a very intimidating sport along with its tortuous nature. I mean, standing on the first tee, I mean, any golf clubs, let alone sort of the old course at St Andrews, is the most nerve racking thing. Like there's a really small cause, like where I live, I think, well, they had an 18 hole before, but now it's just a nine hole course because it's a wee bit smaller now. Colin, Shamala.

[00:12:14]

And it's it's nothing spectacular at all. But the first tee, I remember my leg shaking. It's like even if you messed up, no one's there to watch, really. But yeah, it's it's very difficult. But I also had a sort of similar experience and I was probably a bit later and starting golfing with you because I was more into my football and it overlapped a bit like the competitions are played on Saturdays and I used to play football on Saturdays and stuff like that.

[00:12:46]

But yeah, I'd, I had a great teacher at that same in smaller golf club who sort of just made it really fun. And he was such a good laugh. He felt like he was your friend rather than just sort of like an authority that was sort of teaching you the basics and just, I don't know, getting their money's worth, I suppose. Exactly. You're getting so much more than that. And it's such an amazing skill and such a great benefit.

[00:13:12]

I mean, you look what you managed to achieve was that you joined like clubs and you probably made lots of friends through the sport.

[00:13:20]

You're absolutely right. The amazing thing about golf is that you're out with someone for four hours on the golf course. Yeah. So you get to know someone really, really well. By the end of arounds, you hear their life story where they were. They always say golf is great for networking. And I think that's probably one of the reasons why, because you get you get to chat very deeply with somebody over the course of around.

[00:13:45]

Yeah. I mean, I'm sure my dog will testify. Is that when I'm not playing well, I'm not the most chatty of of golf players to do a round with. But when I'm playing well, I'm like, I can't stop speaking. But yeah, when is going the opposite way. I'm so head down I don't want to speak about. So maybe not the best person to play around. That's so true.

[00:14:07]

And also if you're playing badly and you're spraying it everywhere, you often on opposite sides of the whole opportunity for chatting.

[00:14:17]

But yeah, another sort of feature from that day that became apparent about you is that your dad was there cutting for you. I can't remember. I was maybe I might be correct in saying it was his first time going round the old course. It was, I think. Yes. Yeah. So he was super excited as well. And he was a great laugh. And you go on so well with your dad. And since I've met your mum and we had sort of like a wee party at your house with your mum and dad for Andrea and your graduation.

[00:14:54]

So, like, how or is important to you that you have this super close relationship with your family? Because it's clear that you do, I suppose?

[00:15:04]

Yeah, we do have a really close relationship. We get on really well. I love my mum and dad. We do everything together, really. They're very, very supportive, they've always been there for me and also we just have such a fun time. Me and Mum will often be laughing together in the kitchen over something or other. We all love watching crime box sets, so we are very close. And they've they've done a lot for me.

[00:15:30]

Yeah, my mom is similar in the way that I think she thinks I'm maybe the funniest person in the world and she's probably the only person that thinks that. But yeah, I think it's I think it's such a nice thing to see in people when they have such a close relationship. I mean, it's probably tested to a degree under these circumstances. How are you holding up with this maybe more enclosed environment with just your parents? Does it test your relationship at all or have you come out the other side with them?

[00:16:04]

Well, I'm pleased to say World War Three is not yet broken out, definitely doing OK. This is not to say that we never argue because like everyone, we obviously do disagree. But I you know, I just feel incredibly fortunate to be in the house that we're in thinking of student accommodation and people in very close proximity to each other. It must be so, so difficult. But we are very fortunate that we can go off into our own space and go away into my room and do something different.

[00:16:37]

They were not on top of each other and in each other's hair all the time, which makes such a huge difference.

[00:16:42]

But no, we've been doing things together, cooking, like I say, watching box sets, minimum attempted online ballet courses.

[00:16:52]

Wow. Just different is different. And it didn't last long, Sean. So now I'm watching live streamed events, authors' theaters, that kind of thing. So, no, we're doing OK. We've not fallen out yet.

[00:17:10]

One thing I always think is interesting is that, I mean, I obviously have my sister Andrew, who was spoken about already. But you're an only child if I'm right. So do you think maybe being the only child was a catalyst and having such a close relationship?

[00:17:28]

I think so, yeah. If I'd have had siblings, I think that would definitely change the dynamic. There's just the three of us.

[00:17:35]

So we always go on holidays together. Yeah, golf as well. We have very similar interests. So I think by nature of me being an only child, it's not to say I do enjoy my own company as well. I am quite a solitary person, although I like other people to be in the house. If I know my daughter downstairs, I'm very happy to be pottering around on my own, doing whatever, but I think so. I think it means that we have to just go along the three of us.

[00:18:02]

Yeah.

[00:18:03]

I mean, with Andrea, I never really I think of me and my mum were speaking about the other day on the wall, but I've never actually ever thought about what if I had an older brother or younger sister, how would that change the dynamics? And I don't think I've ever once really thought, oh, I wish I had an older brother as well. Erm and I'm not saying Andreas not trying to substitute her out in case she's listening, but you do start to wonder how you would be, how you would have maybe grown differently if you had the influence of an older brother or a younger sibling or something like that.

[00:18:40]

Has I ever crossed your mind maybe that you would have been raised in a different way? Maybe.

[00:18:48]

You know why? It hasn't crossed my mind as much as you might think. I've never maybe when I was younger, maybe having someone to play tennis with in the normal course were exactly. Yeah. Or play on the PlayStation with.

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But no, I don't think it has. And I think that is testament to how well I get on with my mum and dad. But you and Andrea, I mean you both seem to get on so, so well. I can't imagine you ever disagreeing or arguing. Really.

[00:19:16]

No, I don't think I don't remember ever arguing, which I think is quite rare between siblings.

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I think like I said briefly when I spoke to her on this podcast was that whenever I sort of like have the intuition to window rapport, I was feeling rather Peski or she would just so ignore it and go into her own room or like if I was changing the channel on the TV or just annoying or in general, she would just so instead of like copping back at me, she would just go away. And I don't know whether that's or feel when I think about qualities that I have, I think patience is quite a big one that I possess.

[00:20:02]

And I don't know whether that's sort of like Andrea influencing me in that way in that she had such. Extreme patience sometimes when I think back at me pestering her in the living room.

[00:20:16]

Yes, Andrea has such a calm persona. And you two, when you have that effect on other people, I think. Thank you.

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But yeah. So we can move on slightly to, again, Andrea.

[00:20:29]

She's just going to feature throughout this episode. She's just the star of this podcast.

[00:20:35]

There's no getting away from it. But you studied with her in St. Andrews and you go on to do subsequent subsequent courses in Oxford University, which both are extremely highly regarded institutions, probably known worldwide, especially Oxford and I imagine St. Andrews as well. Is there a significant pressure when you are studying there or were you sort of confident in your own abilities whenever you are studying in these sort of high pressure environments?

[00:21:18]

I'd imagine it's funny thinking about this question, because when you walk around St Andrews or you walk around Oxford, you do feel the weight of history and the privilege of the institution is writ large in all its architecture, the incredible colleges in Oxford, the beautiful cathedral buildings in St Andrews.

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So you are very present and aware of who's been there before you and how prestigious and well regarded they are. So I feel incredibly, incredibly lucky to have gone to both of them.

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But I think the main source of pressure was actually myself rather than the institution. I you know, I'm a bit of a perfectionist if I'm honest, and I would always put a significant amount of pressure on myself to perform at the level that I thought I could or I knew I could.

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So I would say it came for me rather than the universities that I've been at.

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What's so interesting, because I think a lot of the time comes from like parents or siblings, like I always wanted to I always really wanted to be smarter in school, like I wanted to strive to be able to have conversations that were more intellectually stimulating and to have sort of expert in a niche area. But I never really felt like it just came purely internally. Like I always felt like I always wanted to make my parents proud and do stuff like that.

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So do you think there was some sort of influence? Is there or do you think it just purely came out of an innate willingness to just do stuff to the best of your ability?

[00:23:07]

Like you said, I think a mixture of all those things you've just said, definitely wanting to make my mum and dad proud for sure. My mum's been great at keeping me disciplined with my revision over the years.

[00:23:20]

Without her, I would probably wandered off and gone in any direction. It's difficult, I've I can't remember who came up with this quote, but it was about once you achieve something or you get to a certain level of achievement, it almost raises the bar for yourself. And therefore, you feel like you have to perform at that level every time you sit down an exam script or every time you write an essay.

[00:23:46]

And I've definitely related to that, that the first thing you achieve, it raises the bar higher for the next thing, which is, I think where the internal pressure comes from, it's just thinking, well, I've done it before, I have to do it again and again rather than taking each thing as it comes. But at the same time, very much just working as hard as I can and and enjoying it along the way. Don't get me wrong, doing lots of things alongside it.

[00:24:17]

Yeah. I imagine when you're I mean, stereotypically, when I think about Oxford, I mean, I've been to St Andrews quite a few times, obviously visiting Andrew and yourself. But my sort of stereotypical image of Oxford is like everyone saw the same person there on University Challenge and they all like absolutely know everything. And I've never even heard of like I couldn't even understand the sentence, let alone the answer to this question.

[00:24:47]

I need to I can't do anything on university challenge one at most.

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But that's obviously not the case. Do you ever is there ever so do you feel like you're maybe prejudged sometimes when you say you go to Oxford or if you ever speak to someone new and you were to introduce yourself and that would come up in the conversation, do you ever feel like the stereotypical sort of traits are put on you like that?

[00:25:18]

Perhaps? You know, it's funny, having been at Oxford, it's been great to experience because what you expect people to be like they're not and they're on just all these walking stereotype clones.

[00:25:32]

Oh, yes. Yes, of course. But there's I almost sometimes feel a bit embarrassed to say where I go. Yeah. Just because you it I don't know. It just it's so well regarded and so well known that you don't want to come across as pretentious or as though you're lording it over somebody, which I would never, ever want to do, or consider myself to be bright in inverted commas or more intelligent because I go there than somebody else, because that's definitely not the case.

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So there is so much waste and as you say, stereotypes and expectations and baggage that comes with that phrase University of Oxford. So I'm definitely careful how and where I deploy it.

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I keep it hidden as much as possible.

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That's really interesting because soon as I sort of notice about people is that there's a tendency, I think of people are sort of age is to downplay our qualities.

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And the people seem to think it's maybe egotistical or narcissistic to maybe say stuff that they're good up for. I don't know. For example, if I was to think of a quality that was good, I'd say I'm pretty sporty. I'm quite good aptitude for sports. If you were to give me a brand new sport, I've never heard of it. I'd probably pick it up relatively quickly. But if, like, under a circumstance like you were to ask me, Sean, are you great sports?

[00:27:09]

And probably down downplay like a lot how good I am. I think I like being able to pick up sports and have you to say how good you are. Golf, for example. It probably way down playing probably more so than like I have an all right swing and I can hit a ball, OK, but I don't play extremely. So do you think that's maybe part of your I don't say embarrassment that your apprehension to always say that you study Oxford.

[00:27:41]

I think it's something about who you are as a person. I definitely have that self-deprecating quality and inclination like you're saying I can definitely that definitely resonates with me as well. But don't get me wrong, you come across people that that doesn't even cross their wavelength and they're not like that at all. So then you feel like maybe I should, you know, big up what I've done and open up my game here, because it's certainly not everybody's everybody's inclination.

[00:28:13]

Yeah, I'm I mean, I'm sure there's a lot of people will be. And I saw a bit of an imposter syndrome, like I have Aberdeen University. When I first started, I was like, I don't think I'm really smart enough to be in this tutorial or I don't feel like I can contribute to this conversation. But I imagine it happens a lot more frequently under those circumstances. But I mean, I think we probably are so funny because.

[00:28:44]

Oh, go ahead. No, go ahead. No, I was just going to say that it's I'm very sensitive to imposter syndrome, and a lot of my friends have spoken about that, too, and they've experienced it. But I almost think what I'm describing is something different to imposter syndrome because I personally haven't ever felt that. I've always felt very comfortable at St. Andrews under Oxford, just that I'm very aware of why my background, I felt very lucky and privileged.

[00:29:13]

My schooling would contribute to me feeling in place and not out of place there. But there's definitely something else at play.

[00:29:23]

I feel some people just have that inbuilt confidence to really declare their achievements and put it all up front, whereas other people kind of that phrase hide it under a bushel, you know, don't let your talents go unnoticed.

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So I definitely think we have to work at being a little bit more forward, and especially when we're thinking about applications, because you have to lay about master's applications before or applying for a job. You have to really sell yourself because nobody else is going to do it for you. And that's something I've learned. Yeah, it's when I was at school versus thinking about jobs and applying for postgraduate courses.

[00:30:04]

Yeah, that is a tricky part of applications because it suddenly comes to you to come to realize that you're going to have to at least pretend if you don't thank you for some reason of any policies, you're going to have to emphasize them in ways that you usually wouldn't when you just sort of chatting with someone new or chatting with friends. But you've you've really got a sense of yourself, I suppose, in that way.

[00:30:29]

Yeah. What drew you to studying geography in particular?

[00:30:34]

Was it a a particular aptitude for it in school or looking for in school or what brought you to studying or choosing not to study in particular?

[00:30:47]

Well, looking back at school, I had such difficulty choosing between my high level subjects because I loved them all. I did English, history, geography, and I did biology, maths. And I can remember wrestling with that question, not knowing what I was going to do at university. But I remember thinking geography just felt so engaged with the contemporary moment that it seemed so on the button.

[00:31:13]

Thinking about environmental issues or geopolitics, I thought, I feel like I'm going to learn the skills that I need to interpret and understand the world through geography. On a very mundane note, I loved reading and I loved English and picking apart texts, I thought, well, I can, you know, I can read books alongside.

[00:31:35]

So I you know, I'm not deserting English completely. I don't need to study that university necessarily. And history, I, I absolutely adored my history teacher. And I remember sitting myself down and going, do I love history or do I love my history teacher teaching me history? Like if I have a terrible lecturer at university, am I going to love history this much? I thought, hmm, maybe not.

[00:32:01]

And it's been wonderful, actually, because geography was so it's actually very funny. So different university to at school.

[00:32:11]

And I loved it. It was so diverse. Did things like history of empire, identity politics, history and geography, south of the border, all these kinds of things. So it did what I originally hoped it words, i.e., teach me about the world and what was happening at the moment. And I felt very engaged with what was going on, but maybe not necessarily what I was studying at school. Volcanoes, earthquakes.

[00:32:40]

Well, I thought I was going to get. Isn't actually what I was served, but I was very I loved it. Andrews was brilliant. Yeah, very I very rarely did geography in school. I did it for, like, the the mandatory years at the beginning when they were sort of like giving you a taste of all the social sciences. And then I did a crush higher and it on more out of necessity rather than actually want to do it.

[00:33:09]

But I was really surprised actually by how much overlap I had with other social sciences in the way that it talks about migration. That was one in particular that when I studied and I can I can believe that migration was a departure of the sort of geography curriculum. It's not something that I immediately came to my mind. Was the sort of similar experience you were talking about in university when you want of studying this. But I didn't realize all these aspects of encompassed within geography for sure.

[00:33:45]

Geography is such a treasure trove of different subjects and topics and themes that people who don't study geography or my mum studied geography. So it runs in the family.

[00:33:56]

Wow. And she can't believe what I'm studying. She's like, that's not geography, Alex. I can't believe it. I did Latin America, you know, area studies.

[00:34:05]

And obviously I know we're doing, you know, gender identity politics. We're thinking, what? So for sure, it overlaps with history. It was brilliant.

[00:34:16]

I actually got lots of opportunities to do literary analysis, international relations, I should say, as you will have gathered, that I'm on the human geography side and there's obviously a whole other treasure trove on the other side on physical geography, earth sciences, where you get your glasses and volcanoes and earthquakes.

[00:34:35]

So for somebody who's interested in lots of different things and likes a diversity of topics, geography is the home for you.

[00:34:45]

Well, not at all times. When I was I should say, you suffer lots of abuse. Everyone just thinks your coloring map.

[00:34:55]

I have seen people, victims of the coloring and stereotype. But yeah, I was very similar in studying politics when I did modern studies. It was a lot of like British politics, party systems, political parties, although we did like sociological stuff near like advanced higher and higher level. I didn't really realize what I was choosing to study. When I want to choose to study politics like my last two modules I did was gender politics and is Islamic politics and ideologies, which if you told me that, like at the beginning or when I was a school, I'd be studying that in my final semester of University of Adelaide, I wouldn't have believed you at all.

[00:35:48]

So I think it is something to maybe recognize if if anyone is listening to us at a school level, there is like obviously go with what you're passionate about. But also keep in mind, there may not be exactly what you think it is. But again, that's also a good thing.

[00:36:06]

I suppose you're absolutely right. Yeah. You can only think these things through so far and go with your passion and what you what you're enjoying at school, but then be open to surprises because I think that was the joy of the university. I don't know if you enjoyed those too, but imagine.

[00:36:23]

Yeah, the unexpected is sometimes the best. Exactly.

[00:36:29]

And then after your undergraduate, you went to do a Masters. What was the most was in New Zealand.

[00:36:39]

Yes, I went to Oxford to do a Masters in International Development, which was the department, and it was in specifically migration studies, which was great.

[00:36:49]

And there were these two masters that run alongside each other, refugee and forced migration studies and mine, which was migration studies, which looked all different types of migration as opposed to forced migration from conflict or climate change or whatever kind of forced migration they might be looking at.

[00:37:08]

But it was really yeah, it was really brilliant.

[00:37:12]

And throughout my time at St Andrews doing my dissertation in the final year, we were living through the so-called European refugee crisis, which is why I felt like I wanted to understand the long history of migration and how it fitted into the wider context, which is why I was attracted to that.

[00:37:29]

Masters, in particular, a very contemporary influence on your on your decision making. But also, I suppose there's a long, long past history that you can delve into. Absolutely. And then you went on to you're now doing a Ph.D., which I didn't actually know until just before we started recording. I'm sorry, I thought you were in your master's here for some reason. But, yes, you're doing a PhD now. So how's that? How's that going?

[00:38:00]

Yeah, it's going okay. Thank you. So I'm I've gone back into my spiritual home of geography, and I didn't spend long dipping my toe outside the discipline.

[00:38:10]

And I'm in my second year of three. Hopefully that's how long I've got funding for.

[00:38:16]

So the food is split for anyone that doesn't know these three years. For me anyway, the first year is very much reading around your topic, finalizing your research plan, writing your proposal and speaking it through with your supervisors and examiners. Then the second year is devoted to all your data collections that might be interviews or analysis of sources delving into an archive or going off doing your fieldwork in the Sahara Desert or wherever it may be.

[00:38:45]

These are all things that happen in the geography department and then your third year is devoted to writing it up. So I've just about finished my day's collection and I'm in the midst of analyzing everything now.

[00:38:57]

Wow, that's so exciting. It's such a crazy thing to think about where you spend such a long period of time, like the thought of doing a whole year of planning pretty much is just like, I don't know, it's crazy to think about now. I've just I've just finished well, I finished a dissertation because I was in my fourth year. But I mean, the planning process felt long for me and it was probably like three months max. I've started planning it.

[00:39:23]

So I have huge respect for your for your ability to keep going with that huge amount of work.

[00:39:31]

It's very strange to spend so much time on one project. I guess all you think about day in, day out and you definitely need to love your topic because if you're thinking, well, you surely do a Ph.D. not sure you need to love it because it is is a mighty slog.

[00:39:53]

I can tell you that now. Over over.

[00:39:57]

One last thing before we we move on to our podcasting topic, which I'm super excited about is the St Andrews and Oxford are both so small towns of Vibe's with. They're not they're not certainly not like studying in Glasgow or London or Manchester. Is that something that attracted you to studying in those places or is it more the high regard and the I don't know, it was just sort of coincidental that they were small towns.

[00:40:33]

This is hilarious, Sean, because I live in a very small village right now in Leicestershire only, I think it's only got something like four, five hundred people in it. OK, so going to send Underoos for me was an enormous step up that felt like a true urban living.

[00:40:51]

The fact that I could walk to Tesco blew my mind because, hey, it's 50 minute drive to get to the nearest supermarket. So I felt like it was a real step up into the urban life, which is hilarious, given, like you say, it's a tiny town with three with C on three sides for St Andrews.

[00:41:12]

I mean, it was the goal for us and it that that drew me there. And I can still remember to this day going to visit on an open day with my mum one half term, and I'd gone round lots of different universities and I just kept saying I can't really see myself in any of these settings. And then I went to St Andrews and I just loved it. You know, when you get that feeling, an instant connection with the place, that was what it was like with St Andrews.

[00:41:39]

And we were we were sitting this side anecdote view this as we were sitting in Bella Italia, which has since gone. But I loved Bella Italia so much. And there were these two American guys, tourists, golfers, because St Andrews was packed with tourists, as you know.

[00:41:56]

And they were they were saying, oh, my God, you're thinking of coming to school here.

[00:42:01]

And I was like, yes, you know, I'm at school and I'm thinking of coming to do geography and you're a golfer. And I was like, yes, I'm looking around lots of universities.

[00:42:11]

And they just stood there in disbelief saying, why would you want to go anywhere else? And I just remember looking at my mum going, that's so right. Why would I want to go anywhere else?

[00:42:22]

This is perfect. You'll know Sandra is just has that magical quality to it. When you drive up as a golfer with eight golf courses and however many golf shops there are, I mean, the history is littered with golf shops.

[00:42:37]

So there really is nowhere else to go. And I really liked it because it was small and I could walk everywhere. You felt very healthy there because you had the car. And then again, just stepping up a little bit more to Oxford, which is definitely a city, but by no means, as you say, Glasgow or Manchester or London.

[00:42:58]

And I really liked that. Again, I like being able to walk to the theatre, walk to the restaurants. You don't feel too anonymous there. You see people in the streets that you like, but I'm very torn. Then having come back home back to rural Leicestershire, I do like countryside living. So I'm very torn. I don't know where I belong, apart from maybe the seaside I love. I really want to live by the sea when I'm older and grow up.

[00:43:27]

Yeah, I agree. St Andrews is just amazing from the the brief times I've been to visit Andrea. I mean, I've been quite a few times, but I think I actually liked her a lot more than Andrea. When we went to the open day. I think she was still to and fro and like you between a couple of universities and me and my mum just thought it was so Andrea to go to Andrew's that we were like guidebooks and like buying them for her and giving it to her and like, wow, we can picture you, like, here, Andrea.

[00:44:02]

Like, well, we just really adding our own.

[00:44:05]

I absolutely love that. So I have you to thank for meeting Andrea eventually. All me.

[00:44:13]

All me. I take 100 percent credit for this. I think you do have to be a certain type of person to go to St. Andrews, though, for sure. I was amazed at how many people came from London or my great friend Shashank. He came from Mumbai. And I just think you live in Mumbai and you came to St Andrews.

[00:44:30]

I mean, what a culture shock for him. I don't know what he must have thought coming to East Coast Rural Fife, but when you get off the train at Loukas as well, that was all.

[00:44:43]

So I thought I'd come to the end of the Earth. It's a real Harry Potter station there. I pronounce it Lou Charles rather than Loukas. It was a disaster. Sean, my my introduction to Scotland was very, very interesting.

[00:45:00]

But, yeah, I would have I would have loved to study there as well personally, but I didn't quite have the grades to get there. But yeah, it was I always loved visiting Andrew and I think I have that sort of small town enjoyment in me as well. And that's why, although I love coming back home as well to the to the countryside and then studying Aberdeen, I really enjoyed that. So I think I'm a bit of a mix like you.

[00:45:24]

And I can enjoy all of the above, I suppose.

[00:45:29]

And do you think there's something about also you? Really enjoy wherever you end up in the most part, that you make the most of wherever you are and sometimes you go where you meant to go, not to be too deterministic, but.

[00:45:41]

Yeah, exactly. Yeah, like stunning. Aberdeen obviously get to experience opportunities that you maybe win or maybe cultures and different aspects of living that you maybe wouldn't get in St. Andrews and vice versa. So I suppose you're right. Yeah, it's it's sort of you sort of make the most of whatever you whatever situation you're in, I suppose, in those fortunate situations that we found ourselves in as well, especially in St. Andrews, because I mean infamous that only has one nightclub.

[00:46:16]

You've got to see the union. So you have to make your own fun there. Yeah. Yeah. Clubs, lots of student societies.

[00:46:25]

Yeah. That was one thing as well. I loved when I went to visit Andrea, we went to like an improv show and it was so it was so good. I can't remember the name of it now. Yeah. That was a whole lot of fun and I think it was a nice public introduction to sort of university life for me going to visit Andrea when I was still at school. Yeah, it was it was super cool, which is a nice little thing to talk to of societies.

[00:46:54]

As you joined the oxide radio.

[00:46:58]

I suppose it's called the society. Is it.

[00:47:01]

Yeah. Oh yeah. It's society. Yeah.

[00:47:04]

When you are Oxford University. So did you join during your undergraduate and what made you want to sort of join the radio society.

[00:47:15]

So I joined during my Masters right at the beginning and I remember going round the Freshers fair and I'd really wanted to get into student radio at St Andrews, but I'd done so much golf and I was in the choir all my time was consumed by golf basically, and never got the opportunity. IT style radio at St Andrews. And I got an inkling in my final couple of years at St Andrews that I knew I would potentially like to work in radio.

[00:47:46]

So I thought, Alice, you've got to get involved with the student radio in Oxford. So I did. And it was one of those situations where you just pitch a show idea and they get back to you whether they like it or not, and then they let you loose in the studio.

[00:48:04]

And I say studio, it's a little cupboard with a desk and a computer that causes too much grief. And people don't respect the microphones and they're always tangled in wires, but we love it and they give you an opportunity to broadcast pretty much whatever you fancy. So I've made some great friends through oxide radio and it's been a lot of fun. I think that I spoke to one of my friends and one of these episodes who worked or was part of a still is part of, I believe, on the Starling University Radio Society.

[00:48:42]

And what struck me is the one I was walking around like the Aberdeen fresher's for, like you sort described when I saw the radio society, I thought, wow, that's super intimidating in a way is so like the nobody's going to give you a show immediately and you're going to have to go through all these loops and stuff. Whereas the two experiences I've heard from him and you is that it's rather I don't want to say easy, but like, they're very, like, helpful and they help you in a lot of ways and mentoring you.

[00:49:18]

And again, you just going pretty much. And just so having you start with a baptism of fire maybe.

[00:49:25]

Yes, I 100 percent experienced that intimidation, especially during my undergrad, actually. And then I thought, right. So maybe this will be you, Shawn, during your Masters, you'll have plucked up the courage. You think they're just like me? I'm going to waltz up there, get a leaflet, say I'm interested and send them a follow up message because we had to pitch our show online and write a little spiel. And then once you're in, you realize exactly it's nowhere near as intimidating or scary as you thought.

[00:49:56]

So I would say definitely have the inner confidence to rock up to those supercool people, always manning the stands and they need to put more friendly people on the freshest sounds I feel whenever I've stood on the Gulf one, I try and go to be the friendliest person possible.

[00:50:13]

Right to go was always trying to be the same as the ultimate Frisbee. Although you don't get too many or intimidating for ultimate Frisbee, it must be said, Yeah, I don't miss the radio.

[00:50:25]

It's because they're all deejays and they're all into really alternative music.

[00:50:30]

And you think, oh my goodness, yeah, I just listen to country music go, hey, you know exactly that's me.

[00:50:39]

But yeah, I think that you're right. I think it's definitely part of most of the fresher's fires. They're actually playing music. They're the ones playing the music for the event. So you're always thinking that they are too busy or, I don't know, constructive, maybe too many things not to go and speak to them.

[00:50:55]

Yeah, you work up a story as to all the reasons why I should not be with them right now. They're just too trendy.

[00:51:02]

Exactly. But you plucked up the courage and managed to get your wonderful show on the air. So talk us through your show and maybe the process of actually recording it.

[00:51:17]

Yes. So my show's called Oxford College Castaway and it came from my favorite show of all time on radio for Desert Island Discs, which I think is just perfect in every way.

[00:51:32]

It's just such a magical formula, speech and music. And I thought it just has such potential for being adapted to a student setting. So the idea it's sort of a 45 minute to an hour show. And I interview students from across the university, both undergrads and postgrads, and I talk to them about what they're studying, what do they do outside of uni? What do they do prior to coming here?

[00:51:55]

Work gap years schooling and what do they maybe think they're doing next when they graduate. So whereas Desert Island Discs is talking to people right at the top of their game or people who've had extremely successful careers and they're looking back on their life, I'm talking to people who were just kind of fledglings and thinking ahead and what what they they might become those people. So I thought it had lots of potential and I would cast people away not to a desert island, but to their college with only eight music tracks.

[00:52:28]

So they're interspersed throughout the interview. They get a luxury item that they couldn't get through the periods of isolation without, which is very up to now. And I give them a golden ticket to their favorite cafe or restaurant in Oxfords at the end of the interview. So that's a bit of getting some recommendations for why we should all be eating.

[00:52:48]

Wow, sounds like such a great formula and there's a couple we overlapped with, this one, I suppose, and it's sort of like like you said, so fledglings and you're trying to work out what people are going to do. It would actually be interesting to, I don't know, in so many years time to go back and really listen to these and maybe see what people have ended up doing.

[00:53:11]

Yeah, I spoke to the secretary of state.

[00:53:14]

Yeah, yeah, exactly. I imagine because there is a distinct possibility that you could have spoken to someone that will be in the higher political institutions or even running running government or leader of the opposition or such.

[00:53:32]

This is why it's been such a privilege to speak to people. I always say that sitting down with people and having a conversation is something I really love doing. And you find out so much about them and they're always really engaging and, you know, very, very intelligent people.

[00:53:48]

And I'm always in awe of the things that everyone is doing. And one of the premises was when you sit down for a dinner with someone or you go for lunch, you'd never really get past the surface level if you've just met them. It's always pleasantries. But then over the course of this interview, like your brilliant back catalogue of people you've sat down with, they have such interesting life stories to tell and advice. And you can even if you just pick up one or two nuggets from people, then it's then it's worth it.

[00:54:14]

Yeah.

[00:54:15]

And I'm sure, like like you've said, I think people can pick up like one or two things at the very least when trying to people like this and this more and more extended and like actual sort of face to face rather than if you're having a meeting or you may be trying to a couple of different phone calls. This is all just a one on one conversation. And then I get an awful lot out of doing these episodes, like chatting to people that even if I didn't of upload them, I'd love to have the sort of conversation with you or my friends just in general.

[00:54:49]

But this is like a good excuse to sort of rope you into doing. Do you sort of get a similar sort of buzz out of doing these interviews? Yes, I definitely do.

[00:55:02]

There's nothing more exciting for me than the red light going on and being on air and is very much just us having a chat. And we've stuck some microphones in front of this. And I know I love like you. I consume so many podcasts and radio.

[00:55:17]

It's ridiculous. But I remember I was listening to Miriam Margolyes a couple of days ago on Desert Island desks and she spoke about acting is just being paid to show off, basically, and there is something about that as well. But we're just being paid to do what we enjoy. You know, we're just chatting and you can get paid for that, just telling stories and probing ideas. How amazing. And there's just such a buzz, as you say, when you hit records.

[00:55:46]

There's very much a performative element to it, which I don't deny that I love.

[00:55:50]

So when you record them, presumably it's live when you're doing it, is that right? Yes.

[00:55:57]

I looked as though it's obviously these are like pre-recorded pretty much. And I can throw at them if I feel like I've stuttered or made an absolute mess of myself in some way I can over the ease of being able to think, oh, I can. There's sort of edit out if I really wanted to. But when you're live, I suppose there's a bit more pressure, I suppose. Do you find that or did you just breezed through.

[00:56:22]

Well, I should say I do them as though they're live, but they are pre-recorded and I don't edit them at all. And at the very beginning, it was really a time constraint that I didn't have much time to edit them. And I wanted people to speak as though it was live. I didn't want them having the luxury of thinking that I would could go back and edit it all. So I said, we're going to do it as though it's live, but we all pre-recorded it.

[00:56:47]

That makes sense.

[00:56:49]

So I think it obviously you can go back and make things sound better and polished them up. But there's something really nice about having a raw, unedited conversation because that's how we all speak. And if I made myself sound incredible by polishing up all the albums and odds and ends that it would be a bit of a false IDs. Yeah.

[00:57:12]

And it definitely wouldn't flow the same because, I mean, you've made a new podcast pretty much. It's still an association, pretty much with Oxford Radio, I think, and it's called The Quarantine Diaries. And I've been listening along pretty much every single one. But I think I've listened from like four onwards because I was a bit busy with exams, if I can give an excuse, but very touched.

[00:57:39]

You've listened to any of them show that's so nice, but they're really good.

[00:57:43]

And it's interesting that you say that you wanted to emphasize the sort of live. The nature of your of the other show, because it really comes across in the quarantine, is as though you're so you're so free flowing, like when I first listened to so in all, because when I record, like the intro and the ultra to these episodes, it takes me like 20 times, especially when I first start to like be able to actually say what I had, like in my head.

[00:58:15]

But whenever you're sort of speaking for the hour or so that your episodes consist of, it's just so effortless, it seems, when you're doing it. So it's like really adds to when you're listening to it. So tell us a bit about the quarantine diaries when you're doing and what maybe motivated you to start it?

[00:58:38]

Well, that's very kind. Say the quarantine diaries flew out basically of us all being in lockdown and oxide radio was encouraging us all to do podcasts from home. If we had the equipment to do so. I was thinking, well, it really started off for my friends, to be honest with you, sharing stories, swapping what we're doing in isolation. And every week I talk for an hour, as you say, about what I've been getting up to an article of the week.

[00:59:11]

I do a cooking segment because every Sunday I try a new recipe. So I bring people up to speed with that and. Because I was really just thinking about that's a funny premise that I'm cooking at all, so I tried to make it an upbeat, lighthearted chat as though I'm just in somebody's living room or for their walk.

[00:59:33]

And it started off also with the eight trucks that I was listening to that week. But, Sean, you gave me an amazing music recommendation. I'm now taking music requests so we can swap songs and hear what other people are listening to in lockdown. So it's been really fun to record.

[00:59:48]

And also, as well as sharing these stories with people and wanting to bring a bit of lighthearted humor to people is that it's great practice as well, because speaking for an hour freestyle, as you say, is really hard.

[01:00:03]

And I thought this would be an opportunity to practice more than anything. So the first one was hilarious because you should see my notes.

[01:00:11]

I think I had four words and I was deciding my songs on the spot because that day I just thought, yeah, I'm going to do a podcast in replace of Oxford College Castaway.

[01:00:21]

And now I plan it a lot more rigorously thinking of your segment and, you know, having a topic for each of the eight, eight segments. So that helps planning ahead. Preparation is key.

[01:00:36]

Yeah, it comes across the U.K. so plunder because I mean, you must wonder because it seems like I said so effortless when you do it. But yeah, you mentioned some of the segments though. Enjoy, such as you're baking on a Sunday and you have the Instagram stories to go along with, with people following you on Instagram. The talk show us a step by step progress of how it's going on or maybe in some cases how not so while it's going on.

[01:01:06]

But, yeah, they're really fun to follow. You mentioned before that you wanted to maybe or you probably do want to do this maybe as a career after after you've finished your studies. So who maybe were your inspirations? You mentioned a couple of people already, but like who are the people that you point to and maybe think, oh, I'd love to be like that. I got to do a show like that.

[01:01:32]

Goshorn This is such a dangerous question because I could talk about this forever. I love so many different broadcasters. The person who really inspired me to want to go into broadcasting was Martha Colonie, who formally presented The World at Warner and now presents the Today programme on Radio four. And I used to listen to her every lunchtime in San Andreas. So I come back from morning lectures going to the kitchen, another cooking story here and put the radio on and she'd just be the audio background.

[01:02:00]

So while I cooked and ate my lunch and it was listening to her that made me think, oh, this is maybe something I'd really like to do. Very interested in news and current affairs. Just thought she had such a great manner. Amazing voice, brilliant interviewer. And it was when we went, me and my mum went to the Hay Festival, which is the literary festival in Helmy in Wales, and the BBC is an official partner of the festival.

[01:02:26]

So they put on lots of free events and you can go and watch programmes be recorded live. And we saw Martha Kanae presenting The World at One Live, which I just thought was an absolute dream. And I just stared and the lights in awe for that entire 45 minutes when the red lights went on and we heard the pips, I thought there was nothing more exciting or glamorous. And she had brilliant guests. So definitely Martha Carney. Well, Jane Garvey of Woman's Hour, Liza Tarbuck on radio to Paddy O'Connell, who does Broadcasting House on a Sunday morning on radio for Eddie Maher on LBC, Nick Robinson also on the Today programme and the Barnett on five live.

[01:03:08]

Emily made little news and I could literally go on forever. But I think what unites them all is great interviewing, fantastic voice. They and they're able to do this light and shade in radio, which is moving seamlessly between the light hearted and the upbeat to the more serious and profound. And they all do that effortlessly. I mean, Jane Garveys, one liners on Woman's Hour, just humor personified. They're just perfect.

[01:03:36]

So, yeah, listening to as many people as they can and trying to pick up different bits and bobs. And I'm not saying I'm an ounce as good as any of those people, but I just love listening to them. And they've definitely all inspired me in different ways.

[01:03:51]

Yeah, I wouldn't say you're too far off from my from my perspective. I think you're as I've said before, I think you do such a great job. It's so it's also so great to hear someone speaking so passionately, passionately about something I always like. I really want to go and listen.

[01:04:10]

Totally storybook now and other people that Sean, you should Saturday night's radio to explain here what the nation's cooking. What a. It's just there is nothing else to do with your Saturday night, though it is something I think you've touched upon this on your on your podcast episodes is the one you listen to, like radio shows or podcasts. You tend to do other things. And I think I'm one of those weird people that actually just sit down and just listen to a podcast.

[01:04:43]

No, Sean, I'm with you. I also just sit down. Yes. And what's wrong with everybody else? I know.

[01:04:50]

So just sit down and listen. Was pretty much all I've done today so far is just sit in my bed and listen, like usually people are going to, like you said, so cooking or doing other bits and bobs. But I mean, I do often listen to them in the car when when we were allowed to go out and about or on a walk. But but yeah, a lot of the time I just sort of sit in my bed and listen to them, which seems rather bizarre to a lot of people because do you zone out if you're doing other things?

[01:05:19]

I miss so many golden nuggets if I'm doing something else.

[01:05:23]

My favorite is fortunately with Jane Galvin, Fig Glover. I when that comes out on a Friday, sort of four to five p.m., I mean, I'm straight on it. That's my evening sources.

[01:05:33]

And I couldn't think of anything worse than having to multitask while listening is my undivided attention.

[01:05:40]

That is exactly because quite often I'm listening to like my favorite podcast is on terror expert with Doug Shepherd, and he does a thing where he shouts to experts in particular fields and sometimes the jargon that these people are are saying or just the conversations that they require quite a lot of attention. And I I love listening to those sort of interviews when, you know, you're going to learn something new in that sort of way, as well as the more lifestyle ones such as this one.

[01:06:15]

But, yeah, I feel like they require a lot more attention than me cooking at the same time would provide.

[01:06:22]

Sean, have you got to the stage of ever making a few notes after you've listened or during that?

[01:06:28]

I know that you are close because I do those weekly recommendations on the Instagram quite often when I think it's going to be one that I'm going to be recommending or if partway through I think, oh, this is amazing. I'll start taking notes on stuff that I particularly want to maybe mention during the post of things I enjoyed about it. So, yeah, I do also I do also take notes while listening, which is a new level of dedication, I suppose.

[01:06:59]

I love this.

[01:07:00]

We're soul mates. And your recommendation idea is perfect because if you're stuck for something to listen to where you fancy something new, you can just log on to your page and find out what I should be tuning into.

[01:07:12]

Yeah, I try and keep them also in sort of a similar vein to this one, they're sort of just interviews, maybe one on one or on. I mean, some of them obviously aren't, because I would get maybe a bit tedious for people if I recommended the same ones. But yeah, I try to give a variety of also not stray too far away from the main premise of this one, but also it's been helpful in the sense I haven't been this is the first podcast episode I've done since like November.

[01:07:43]

So in a way sort of kept the Instagram page. So taking over as well. And people sort of remember that I'm still about and I'm still here, even though I'm not posting any episodes for quite a while. But yeah, I'm super excited to be able to post this one soon. So, yeah.

[01:08:02]

Um, but you've mentioned all these sort of shows going back to going back to you.

[01:08:09]

I'm all for your podcast show on a proportional response and all your recommendations. Let's talk about you.

[01:08:17]

Maybe maybe in time we can we can build more into me.

[01:08:20]

But, um.

[01:08:23]

But yeah, you you've mentioned these Radio four and radio two shows, which traditionally tend to be listened to people older than people around our age.

[01:08:34]

So and I think you mentioned in the most recent episode that you just put out that you feel like you have a soul of like a 70 year old, um, which is letting my secret out the back show and I thought was really nice.

[01:08:48]

But do you think you there is a particular reason why you gravitate more towards these Radio four shows as opposed to maybe N sound one that we have up in Aberdeen or Radio One sort of programmes?

[01:09:05]

Well, I don't want to come across as a total bore for you and I totally out of my age category, but I do love radio for it's such a selection box of wonderful audio gems.

[01:09:20]

One minute you can be listening to a really interesting conversation on their lunch time current affairs program. The next minute you're learning about the history of tensions on the food program, you know, you move through so many different interesting topics and everything's unexpected on there.

[01:09:40]

And I do sometimes feel like I am a 70 year old, 25 year old body. But this is not to say they don't enjoy radio on. I think Greg James is a magician. You can tell he loves radio. He places his listeners front and center. So I think some of the segments that he does are hilarious. I just don't tune into radio on as much as I would radio for. I love local radio. I think the stories of local communities are so perfectly told on local radio.

[01:10:13]

I love the music. Also, my music taste is very eclectic. I am a golden oldie as much as I love what's in the in the charts at the moment. So I love a mixture.

[01:10:24]

I'm just basically a radio fiend and I will consume all different types of radio. But Radio four does feel like a very spiritual home.

[01:10:37]

I live as well, I should say. Five live. I love five live. I listen to Amabile on it regularly and I think she's brilliant and there's definitely a shift in tone between them and I enjoy both of them. I'm just devastated. They've chopped the golf podcast, which originated from Five Live The Cut with Andrew Cotter and Ian Carter.

[01:10:59]

Devastated.

[01:11:00]

I was a regular probably the only female 25 year old tuning into that podcast, but. Loved it. I mean, I think I'm going to have to once we've done chatting, I'm going to just have to immediately turn on a radio and start listening, because I agree with you. In most of these people that you've mentioned and I like follow on Twitter or I'm aware of, but I never actually listen to those shows. So I really do need to do that because I think similarly, I mean, we have so much in common with our podcast listening tendencies that I don't see why I wouldn't also delve right into the radio sort of listening realm as well.

[01:11:44]

But yeah, like you, I've listened to a bit of what's his name again? Greg. Greg. James, yes. Greg James. I like his unpopular opinions, but that's so funny. Yeah, that's so interesting sometimes. And Andrea, I definitely need to go and listen to people like I'm Abana and Andrew Coulter, although Andrew Culture is doing those things with his dog. Have you seen those?

[01:12:11]

So, I mean, his voice is like golden syrup.

[01:12:16]

I mean, you could listen to it narrating anything, but, yeah, he's brilliant. And the latest, I think he overlays his dogs on a call. Yeah.

[01:12:26]

Yeah. It's so good. It's just when you thought it can get better, you get to stock up on a single word, highly recommend it to anyone who hasn't seen it. It's very, very funny.

[01:12:37]

All people. Yeah, maybe more people taken the star role, of course, so there's only a couple more things I've written down that I really want to speak to you about, but what is your goal? Pretty much just doing these radio podcast style things you've mentioned that you maybe want to go into after you've done your studies. But is that the maybe the ultimate goal is sort of practicing so that you can just keep going up and sort of the hierarchy of of radio?

[01:13:12]

Well, let's live in fantasy land, Sean. We don't make any predictions. It's so difficult to get into and very, very competitive. And there's so many brilliant people. I mean, I'd love to work in radio. That would definitely be my ultimate goal, Martha. She's just she had a dream job in the world at one there or PM with very much living in fantasy land. That would be my dream to do something in news and current affairs.

[01:13:41]

Yeah, but just to be in front of a microphone, I mean, I would have been happy to be the runner at the Hay Festival, bringing her her scripts that day. You just get we've touched on this before, but the excitement of when the light goes on is just second to none for me. So, yes, that that's the ultimate dream.

[01:14:01]

But also for college cast away. I did it because I enjoyed it and I thought what a brilliant opportunity to try my hand, dip my toe into the broadcasting world and speak with so many inspiring fellow students with the quarantine diaries, just trying to bring an ounce of laughter to people in lockdown and doing what I enjoy as well. It provides a great structure structure to my week because I know I record it every Tuesday. I put it out every Tuesday evening and then my week becomes, oh, could I use this on the podcast?

[01:14:34]

So Lockdown is flying with my quarantine diaries, keeping me on the straight and narrow.

[01:14:40]

You're breezing through the quarantine, loving my music playlist and coming up with an article of the week.

[01:14:48]

Exactly.

[01:14:49]

I'll finish off with what we who would be. And I've probably you probably already mentioned them already, but who would be a dream guest that you could have on your Castaway, our quarantine podcast. Who would you most like to interview or even in a future show? Gosh, this is so difficult. I can't keep mentioning Martha's name, so to be somebody different, I did say I did a recent Q&A for Exide radio where they were doing a meet the presenters feature, and I said it was Martha Kanae because she was such an inspiration.

[01:15:29]

But I also said I wouldn't mind a sit down interview with Jodi Caylloma.

[01:15:34]

So anybody who's a regular listener to my podcast will know I love Jodi Kohima so much. I love killing Eve. She's the star. She's Villanelle. For anyone that isn't watching killing Eve, why not on Opelika?

[01:15:50]

So she I mean, she's just an amazing actress. Her ability to do accents is phenomenal. So I wouldn't mind 30 minutes with her. Obviously, she's not a student. The other person I'm a huge fan of is Alan Bennett. So I'd love to sit down with Alan Bennett, the playwright, screenwriter, actor, author, and interview him.

[01:16:12]

It's just too many people to think about, isn't there? There's too many short theories. I think I'll wrap this up with questions now. I can give you a minute to think about this. I don't know if you've listened to the end of one of these episodes, but I tend to finish them off with the questions I ask every single guest and there's like six or so. So I'll just roll them off to you. And if it's the first thing that comes into your mind or you need a minute to think about it either is fine.

[01:16:44]

But do you have a go to snack? Brioche, oh, this is so bizarre. Me too, I eat chocolate chip brioche is on a regular basis.

[01:16:55]

No, Sean, we are literally the same person. Two peas in a pod. We are, although I have to say not chocolate chip.

[01:17:01]

I don't eat chocolate. So mine's playing all the way to the bottom brioche.

[01:17:06]

So you can edit that out. Yeah.

[01:17:12]

Is there one person or social media page that everyone should follow? Oh, my goodness, this is so tough, I'm going to say I'm going to say follow. Now, I'm going to say Jane Garvey, because she's just so funny on Twitter. Yeah, hello, Jane.

[01:17:33]

And listen to fortunately, do you have a guilty pleasure?

[01:17:39]

This one is usually the one that trips people up. I just love sitting down with a box set and I could honestly binge episodes like there's no tomorrow. Yeah. So I'm going to say a good crime box.

[01:17:56]

WALCH Excellent.

[01:17:59]

This one's a bit bizarre as well. I took these. I don't know if you've ever seen like that was the show that used to be called Inside the Actor's Studio and they used to be this guy that used to interview more famous actors like Bradley Cooper and such like. But yeah, he used to finish with, like, the sort of style of questioning. So that's why I took it from. But he always used to say, what's your favorite curse word?

[01:18:26]

That's the next one. But I mean, a lot of people have just gone with random expletives. But yeah. What's your favorite curse word?

[01:18:34]

Andrew will attest that. I really don't don't swear that much. Let's go. Bunga bunga. Oh, hey.

[01:18:42]

That one is one I used frequently as well as the last two. What is your favorite quality about yourself or a favorite quality about yourself?

[01:18:53]

Oh my goodness. This is the self deprecation coming back. I hope I'm a kind person. I hope people find so. You are very kind. I can testify to that. That's a good one. And one thing lastly, I'd like to improve about yourself. Where to begin.

[01:19:14]

I'd like to improve not being such a perfectionist, just being able to rattle things off a bit more, a bit like the quarantine diaries. I wish I could apply my adlibbing to my academic work. Great loss of a perfectionist.

[01:19:30]

OK, nice. Very nice. So that's all I've really got. Thank you for joining me again. This has been really good fun. It's been a fair bit, I mean a wee bit longer than I usually do them, but we've just been chatting away so easily I haven't even noticed the time that's gone by. So I find it. Anyone that's still with us, that's Sean.

[01:19:51]

I've loved it. It's been such a privilege and I love chatting to you. You're so funny and nice. And I'm so sorry that we've got on for an hour. Twenty minutes.

[01:20:00]

No, it's I mean, it's been such a love, so I wouldn't want it any other way. So, yes. Thank you again.

[01:20:06]

So that was our conversation. As I said, it was a bit longer than usual. So thank you for those that are still listening. I hope you enjoyed as much as I did whilst recording it. And I'll hopefully have another episode to post soon. But until next time, keep up the positivity and stay safe.