For the most part the talks went really well
the kids were good and asked questions, figured I was onto a winner when the teachers were so curious they were taking notes and interrupting. Mostly the kids asked pretty good questions, the only silly one was from a kid asking how they choose which chicken to roast... Like in supermarkets... this is not something I know, nor is it something I have any intention of finding out. But other than that the kids got pretty interested in the idea of people who live on floating houses, and if there's any doubt about the excitement of science generally showing a video of a rocket launch sets everyone straight (and gets a lovely and appreciative oooooohhh).
What else? Not much really, the tricky bit was presenting my research to a bunch of prep kids. They did pretty well I think, it was possibly the most challenging time in my short time as a science communicator and whilst I could feel grey hairs growing I also learnt a lot about watching the audience and how to compare complicated international issues with day to day things kids experience everywhere (I avoided the word geopolitical and have since deleted it from the presentation). One of the issues I find most challenging to communicate is how decisions made about water use in China have direct impacts for communities in Cambodia. Whilst the analogy of water at the top of a mountain being clean and water at the bottom of a river being less clean is an ok way to tell the story it still seems to lack something. One of the many concepts I'm working on for communication.
Stayed at a slightly creepy b&b where they tried to feed us fruitcake.
Being Australian scientists it is essential to appreciate the local pub, we did this with enthusiasm.