November/ December 2016 -So, having been given a start date, there was the matter of the month in India which intervened. Once back, the new start date scheduled for end of November. Hoorah!
The trip in by car took longer than imagined, then trying to pay the car-parking on a phone with a dodgy battery was another challenge. All part of the fun and very soon met up with Wendy and got into the department. Work began in the Herbarium where Helen was ‘laying away’specimens, so I began by sharing in this task. It was so interesting to open the bundles of specimens (today we were doing ‘cultivated’ specimens from Ness Botanic Gardens) Some folders needed replacing, if inappropriate or replicating, if too full, so were generated from new acid-free card. The folders for each species are stored in special museum shelving, ordered taxonomically.
Another fascination was recognising the binomial, specific names, all in Latin, of course, although there are many species which I am seeing for the first time. As well as the section for Cultivated specimens, there are sets of shelves for British and Irish specimens, European specimens and Extra-European (rest of World) specimens. In the afternoon, Ella (another new volunteer) came and shared the laying away of the current Ness bundle.
The following week was staff training, so volunteers were not needed, and the 15th December was a morning’s laying away, followed by the Xmas get-together. It was lovely to meet staff, many new, but Tony, Carl and Colin who I already knew. Happy Xmas!