Physics and Chemistry

My husband is officially a Doctor. He wouldn’t be much use to you if your throat was sore or your arm hurt, but if you’re having trouble normalising your wave functions, he’s your man. This week Tony’s PhD thesis was accepted. Who would have thought back in year twelve, when he was in trouble for skipping classes and I was the diligent student, that eight years later he’d be solving the mysteries of two-dimensional materials and I’d be washing his shirts. Does that sound envious?

Ancient Mesopotamian board game

Studying the world's oldest board game

Envy aside, I’m incredibly proud. I haven’t done much husband raving before now, so bear with me. He’s quite a man. Every morning when that familiar little voice can be heard from the next room, Tony wrenches himself upright and stumbles across the hall to perform the world’s most disgusting task (changing the first nappy) before getting Rose her breakfast. The first thing I become conscious of each morning is a hot cup of tea deposited by my bed about half an hour later. To show you why I’m incredibly proud, here are some comments his examiners wrote:

This performance in a short period of three years exceeds many full time researchers in many established Universities and national laboratories… I would like to reccommend this thesis for an excellence award.

This is a highly competitive research area and it is very impressive that this thesis reports theoretical results which have already been published in eight papers in leading journals… The thesis should be nominated by the School for the Bragg Medal of the Australian Institute of Physics which is awarded annually for the best Ph.D thesis.

We won’t be in Wollongong for Tony to wear the floppy hat at his graduation. Maybe we’ll have a mini ceremony at home, with my shower cap and dressing gown and Rose as the Vice-Chancellor. Time to break out the champagne, or maybe the Stuttgarter-Hofbrau?

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11 Responses to “Physics and Chemistry”


  1. 1 lesley May 12, 2010 at 9:51 am

    I too am incredibly pleased for Tony, and I thank God for the young woman who fell in love with him all those years ago. This young woman would not have a bar of the mischief and mayhem that can be the undoing of young men in their teens. Ally – your contribution to Tony’s success cannot be underestimated and your faithfulness and love have shone through in all these years of study. One of the best things Tony has done is to find and marry you Ally – a godly and faithful wife. Keep up the good work my precious girl and we look forward to what the future holds for both of you – lots of love –

  2. 2 Jo May 12, 2010 at 10:19 am

    Hear hear! And I didn’t even know Tony as a teenager skipping classes at school. Ally, you are a wonderful, talented, faithful, loving, BEAUTIFUL woman. Your support and faithful presence and encouragement have meant so much to me, I can’t even imagine what it’s meant for Tony.

    And Tony…well done! What an achievement! And I think the shower cap and dressing gown would be a splendid substitute…and you miss the boring speeches too!! You could find some pompous, cathedral music to play just to add to the atmosphere. I’d love to see the photos of Tony his gear.

    Much love to you Ally and to Tony & Rose.
    xo

  3. 3 Richard May 12, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    I am very surprised that Anthony has studied physics. I expected him to gain his doctorate in board games.

  4. 4 Carol Jesson May 12, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    Congratulations Tony – luv Aunty Carol & Uncle Gordon

  5. 5 Jill May 12, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    Wow..what a buzz. Congratulations all round. Tony, ‘twould be nice to be all begowned and celebrating with university folk who’ve been part of the journey, but I’m sure there’ll be other occasions. (We’ve just shared an award ceremony related to a PhD bestowed last year…who knows?) Think pics of the shower cap are in order. Ally, the way you’re going the publishing world will be grabbing your multi-faceted talelnt…anyway, from one who knows, pure uni. studies can be undertaken at future times…all the better for the ‘top-up’ effect. Energising when you least expect it. Rose as Vice Chancellor sounds good to me. Love all round, Jill

  6. 6 Gerri Frederiksen May 13, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Congratulations Tony and to you too Ally, it has been a joint effort!
    I am sure Christian, who follows your blog Ally, we be equally impressed and proud, as a fellow Hurlstonian and old mate from school days.
    Love and hugs…Gerri and Torbs..xx

  7. 7 Liz Boone May 13, 2010 at 5:44 am

    Wow! Congratulations Tony! Yeah even though you may not have worked hard at school, you certainly have been making up for it these last years. Very proud of you. And you too Ally. You have been keeping your husbands mind sharp all these years. An excellent match…

  8. 8 Kevin May 14, 2010 at 1:03 am

    Yes! Physics! Many congrats Tony. 🙂

  9. 9 Annaleise May 15, 2010 at 1:36 am

    Wow, at the beginning I intended, after I finished reading, that I would comment to say congratulations to Tony, but that is so much beyond just having been approved! That is so great! How nice to get such incredible reviewer comments. And how great to be such a thoughtful servant hearted husband too 🙂 What great news, I can’t wait to tell Dan about the reviewer comments and the cups of tea 🙂

  10. 10 Annaleise May 15, 2010 at 1:52 am

    oh and I know how you feel about washing the shirts. I often feel the same. I was just thinking yesterday, but Lil! Why! do you think you would be more important if you were wearing a power suit and busy with some job – like being a lecturer, I was thinking – where it’s only got value because, I dont even know why it’s got value. I think it might be the suit. I don’t know. I guess it’s because you’re trained and people assume you know something they don’t (besides how to change a nappy, which I suspect has little street cred because it’s not that hard to learn). I think as well it’s the lack of discussing really juicy ideas. But I know that you know as well as I do, the long term value is there, and really to get to the end of your life (and I don’t want to negate the eternalness of life, but I think that it’s sort of a clear picture) , well I just think I don’t think I’d be happier if I didn’t have Eoin and got to wear powersuits and get flown places for my brilliant mind (somethings – the lack of a brilliant mind to get me flown places – I probably shouldn’t blame on Eoin 🙂 – in a way, we sort of have been thrown into a situation where we get to mull over one of the juiciest topics… What on earth is the meaning of my life if I’m washing shirts? I think it’s quite encouraging really (though it’d be nice if this was a real conversation 🙂 I might as well be in our laundry mulling it over on my own 🙂 ) to be able to go, my life has meaning because I spend it doing laundry… because there is a God who defines meaning and he sees (the godliness) of my relationship with Eoin, with Dan and with everyone else I run into as more important than the progression of ideas and society. Well, I think about it just about every day. I imagine I’ll be thinking of ways to increase my perceived value again soon. Oh well, a work in progress hey? And may God work through our weaknesses 🙂

    • 11 mavisandfrank May 16, 2010 at 12:26 pm

      I do know it as well as you do, thanks for reminding me 🙂 I think I need to learn not to blame Germany for it. I tend to think, “nevermind juicy ideas, ANY ideas would be a start! But the truth is, I struggled with this before Tony ever mentioned Germany. Whenever I think I’ve made progress with this line of thinking, I find myself comparing and envying again. Thank goodness God does work through our weaknesses xx
      Thanks for reminding me friend xx


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A girl with a camera, a toddler and a sewing machine. Making sense of Germany... and life in general.

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