I present my studies for half an hour and then face questions from the committee and audience for the next half an hour or so. I have been practicing in front of my group and incorporating feedback so it looks pretty good now. My colleagues have been so helpful and sweet. I need to work on the smoothness of the presentation and do some reading for possible questions in the time remaining.
I’ve been working from home a lot recently as it is easier to write like this. I can access food anytime, sing as much as I want without disturbing anyone, and work as late as I want without the hassle of getting to and from the office.
my first first-author paper got accepted a few weeks ago and published this week. I’m still waiting for a response to my second paper after resubmitting with revisions. And the third paper is being written right now.
I get a little uncomfortable around too much flatland but when I got off, greeted my friends and walked close to the water, I really felt the beauty of the land. The birds were flying in swarms so large they looked like black clouds. The air was so clear that you could see the buildings in Bremerhaven on the other side of the water. We saw lighthouses flashing light periodically back from the south where the backwaters lead to Bremen. The water we were walking along had very gentle waves lapping the sandy shore and there were plenty of parks in the form of boats for children to play on. The vegetation was specialised for sand and mildly saline waters.
The sound, smell and sight of a storm are reassuring and comforting to me. I sit here thousands of miles away listening to Ghanana ghanana from Lagaan for a moment transported to Bangalore. The breeze outside is warm and whispers promises of a downpour. I feel peaceful and content.
I’ve been having smell hallucinations of various things which just take me back to moments and feelings of when I was a child, and dreams about family and boats.
Edinburgh still felt so familiar, like I had never left. I was happy to hear English all around me but have to admit I missed the German too. Edinburgh is such a great city with so many people from so many places, beautiful old buildings, not half as modern as my area in Oldenburg. Old in a cosy way. Catching sight of Arthur’s Seat and walking around campus and familiar areas, I felt reassured. Pleasant nostalgia.
As the anaesthesia wore out the pain slowly began and I took the painkiller. I made apple juice and mashed carrot for my dinner which I didn’t have until late because I had eaten a full lunch as a precaution. I managed with such baby food for the next 2-3 days, eating softened bread for breakfast instead of cereal because I was asked to avoid milk products. Apart from that on the to do list was; avoid smoking, drinking alcohol or coffee; which was easy because I don’t normally do those things anyway.
We saw many beautiful fountains, flowered gardens, old beautiful buildings and new modern ones which were very well designed. We returned the bikes and went on a short walk before we headed back, through a Hare Krishna concert/performance at the big fountain.
My fingers hurt a lot initially from pressing down so hard on the strings but I was learning so much so fast that I couldn´t stop. Hunger, tiredness, stress would all melt away as I sang along with some simple songs I had learnt.
It’s not formal at all- people from the building say hi and join us so spontaneously. We sing songs like Hotel California, Hello (Lionel Richie), Summer Wine, Smells like Teen Spirit, Zombie, I believe I can fly, some Nickleback and we’re trying Scorpions too. We all help each other with the notes and learning new songs. It’s a lot of fun and has increased the joy in my life!