Yesterday morning was a flurry of all those dull post-holiday activities; washing, clearing out the inbox, checking my bank balance etc. Which left the afternoon free for me to do the first thing on my pre-departure to do list - buy my field note books.
I have always been a bit of a stationary fiend, and so I take buying field books very seriously. On a whim last year I purchased some Marbig Colourhide 120 page books. They're not the most fabulous paper quality but they have some other features I quite like. The first is that they are spiral bound, which makes it easier to fold them when working. It makes them slightly less sturdy than say a moleskine or general exercise book, but convenience wins out in this instance. Secondly, they have a nice sturdy plastic front cover and thirdly, the covers come in a range of colours which makes it easier to rummage for the right one when they're scattered all over my desk.
I've purchased 10 so far, they're stacked up on my desk waiting to be filled. Some I will sketch out ideas for sessions and things I need to ask still. The others will be filled at later dates when I have new questions, or with narratives and stories.
I've also purchased some A5 moleskines for general ethnographic notes and couldn't resist buying some adorable A6 ones as well for general notes. I'm fond of moleskine for the relative robustness as well as the nice paper, although it appears there's a dead bug pressed into one of the pages of the first book I opened which I hope is not an ominous portent.
And so this marks the beginning of the pre-departure month of organisational festivities. I will probably return to a more ad hoc posting schedule so you can join me on the bureaucratic adventure that is organising a field trip!