Another Monday, coming off another weekend of great adventures.
Before those updates, though, I want to talk a bit about working with Universe Awareness. So far, it’s been really wonferful to be here, and I feel that I am making a contribution to the organization, while still learning a lot about what they do. I’m doing a lot of writing and editing, mostly giving updates about the great things going on at different international branches.
Every day is kind a a new adventure in that way. I show up to work, and have a few long-term projects that I feel I’m perpetually working on (the board game, the pamphlet/guide for starting a program), and then I’ll also get small side-assignments to write a news update, or a Space Scoop (which takes ESO headline stories and changes them into kid-friendly language). The website is currently under construction, and so that has been a project as well. I wasn’t shown how to edit the website itself, but I’ve done a lot of content editing for thew news updates, etc. Hopefully, it will go live tomorrow, and I can share the updates that are most interesting that I take personal pride in writing!
Ok, now for the fun updates:
1. Friday afternoon, the work crew took a trip to ESA (the European Space Agency). It’s only about a 20 minute drive from Leiden. We were shown around the building, and then went to a public talk on Exoplanets. Here’s a terribly unflattering picture of the group:
(Left to right — Me, Pedro, Wouter, Stephanie. I guess Pedro looks normal, but terrible for the rest of us…)
The day on Saturday was typical and wonderful. Sleeping in, then a trip to the market and into town for groceries and goodies. The stereotypical stroopwafel snack:
Saturday night was Museum Night in Leiden. For the low-low price of 12,50 eur, you have admission to all 8 museums in town, plus free boat transport between the museums! Each place also held special activities for the event, making it even more exciting. We only visited half the museums, but each one was so different and itneresting. We went to:
The Hortus Botanicus (Botanical Garden)
Museum Boerhaave. This was my favorite. They also had a terrific interactive circus-toy exhibit:
Each one had a button, and you would press the button and watch the circus come to life! I loved this exhibit, and would like to go back for longer!
We also went to the ancient history museum and looked at Egyptian artifacts, as well as the Museum Volkenkunde, which is their Anthropology museum, and toured an excellent exhibit on the Maori people. All in all, an excellent night!
Yesterday, the sun came out, and it was a surprisingly warm day. Stephanie and I were invited to go to a music festival in Den Haag by astronomy master’s student Carla. This is us at the festival:
Again, not flattering for anyone. We’re much nicer-looking in person, I promise!
It was a crowded event, with probably about 100,000 people there. The music was OK, but mostly it was just nice to be outside in the sun.
This week will be full of great adventures, and so I’ll have to update again soon. On the list is:
1) Moving! I’m changing housing to save a bit of money. It will be a student apartment outside of the city center, but I’m looking forward to a change of scenery. I’m thinking also that with the saved cash, I can take a trip (maybe to someplace warm?)
2) A visit from Ruben Land ’12. Between town exploring, a beach ultimate tournament, seeing Ilja Hermans (BMC ’12), and a possible trip to Amsterdam, it should be a great visit!
3) Enjoying the sun while it lasts. As we speak, I’m preparing to take the afternoon off with Stephanie to go to the beach, and then kayaking on the canals later tonight!
So, more to come!