My name is Francesca and I am 24 years old, Australian-born, currently a PhD candidate at the University of Leuven. I live in Brussels with my girlfriend of 5 years and the reason for my move across the world, Noémie, and our very cute but mischievous bunny Oscar.

Aside from research, my passions are basketball (I’ve been refereeing for almost 10 years), singing and cooking delicious vegetarian/local food.

This blog is a side-project that I’ve started to share the journey of writing a PhD, balancing study, work and everyday life and living 17 000 km from ‘home’. Potential topics that I may write about include but are not limited to: difficulties with my PhD, what I learn, homesickness, recipes, books and travels.

Wondering about the title of this blog? It’s a reference to a Groucho Marx quote which I’ve always liked: “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”

So here’s to books, dogs, and all the things that life outside of one has to offer.