Fun with friends

Okay, as promised, the post-move-in update: I’m out of the dorm and into a nice summer sublet in eastern Cambridge, about a 15 minute walk/5 minute bike from work. I’m not posting a lot of pictures of the place because I want to respect the privacy of the usual tenants. My favorite features are the balcony right outside my room (where I spent much of Memorial Day weekend reading The Sandman) and the cute little backyard with some lovely flowering trees and a charcoal grill. It’s also just nice to have a living room where people can hang out.

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The aforementioned awesome backyard (the grill is hiding behind the flowering dogwood).
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This sums up my Saturday on Memorial Day weekend (only made it through books 5-8).
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Somerville (just east of Cambridge) is a pretty lively place! This is the fourth live band I ran into walking from my sublet to the UPS store to the grocery store and back.
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Housemate and fellow physics G1 Kristine and her dad, who kindly  helped us schlep our heavy/bulky stuff from the dorms to the sublet’s basement on the weekend before we moved in (I’m very grateful we moved my mini-fridge with a car instead of by hand!).
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Kristine’s dad also took some of us G1s bowling, so here’s an action shot of Nick taking an action shot of Bez.
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Kristine’s mom and sister also came to visit the weekends after her dad (bookending a week-long trip through Maine and Quebec), but the only picture I took while we were hanging out was this blurry one of the Irish pub where we got dinner one night.

Accompanying the move, I’ve transitioned into full-time lab work, which has been awesome! Experiments are making progress, and I’m becoming more integrated into the lab, as a superuser on the carbon nanotube growth furnace and now on the manual transfer stage (that’s a lot of jargon…just smile and nod, or ask me about it later). Spending a lot of time in the cleanroom isn’t necessarily a lot of fun in the long term, but I’m still enjoying learning new things, and I’m excited about getting our experiments up and running. I also volunteered to give next week’s condensed matter journal club, since my MPhil research was recently published in Nature Physics. We’ll see how that goes…

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Pretty colors in the cleanroom: a (slightly over-oxidized) SiN wafer, fresh out of the reactive ion etch and destined to be diced into chips on which we grow carbon nanotubes. This one actually broke and was unusable, but you get the idea.
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I got a new desktop computer for my desk in the lab! Hopefully this will discourage people from leaving crap on my desk…(it’s right next to the door and the printer, so probably not).
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Elise took some pictures of me looking science-y.
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Here I am demonstrating the time-honored tradition of drawing on cleanroom wipes (because real paper is too dirty to bring into the cleanroom; pc to Elise).

Elise also came to visit last weekend, which was really fun. We took the ferry out to Georges Island (no apostrophe) in Boston Harbor, which has a Civil War-through-WWII era fort, and also seabirds (more importantly for Elise).

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Fort Warren is the main feature of Georges Island: more info here.
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Looking off the back of the boat (photo credit: Elise).
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I think these are clematis? (pc: Elise)
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View of Boston from the shore of Georges Island (pc: Elise).
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I’m wearing my trip-leader bandanna (J59 for life!) because I thought it would be sunny…(pc to Elise).
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Elise is equipped for bird-watching!
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An extremely New England-y view (pc to Elise, who is clearly much better with a camera than I am…)
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Leaving the dock.

Other things that I didn’t take pictures of: we celebrated physics G1 Delilah’s birthday with board/card games, beer, brownies, and cake last night (two desserts because Sasha and I both got or made something without mentioning it to the other…), which was cool. I have a few recipes queued up to post about, mostly without pictures. Generally, I haven’t been doing anything too exciting, just enjoying living with people and having a bit more outdoor space.

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