My web photo album was moved to the new address and I was messing around a bit with my old pictures these last days. Here's one I really like. I took it more than 4 years ago at home in my parents' garden.
So here we are in October and it's still nice and warm in Nice. The trees are still green and the sun is still shining almost every day. I don't want to complain, I really love it. It's just that I miss the nice colours of autumn. Last weekend I made a trip to the colourful trees in the mountains. It was good to be cold for a change and to be in autumn for a day.
Of course lying on the beach is not everything what I did this summer. For example I visited Budapest for a few days. Budapest is a very beautiful city on the Danube. For all the ignorants it is the capital of Hungary and mustn't be mixed up with Bucarest which isn't even in Hungary. As some might know, I was born in this beautiful city, so that might be a reason of why I love being there that much. Another reason might be that I always go there on vacation and I pass mostly enjoyable days in Budapest. This summer was very hot, so I spent the days at the pool. The nights were slightly cooler, but not much. Downtown Budapest is the most beautiful part of the city at night. To walk along the Danube and to look at the historic buildings illuminated by night is very impressive. I tried to take some pictures, I'll post a few of them. This first picture shows the Chain bridge, viewed from the Pest side. There is a tramway line along the Danube and behind, on the Buda side you can see Matthias Church.
This is the Chain bridge viewed from Buda, behind you can see the Bazilika.
This is the way I'll always think of my summer 2009:
Lying on the beach in Antibes all day long, sleeping and doing nothing but reading Terry Pratchett and bathing in the blue sea. It was very nice and relaxing. It lasted only two weeks, I could continue this way for ever.
Unfortunately I had to restart working on my Ph. D. It has to be done by the end of this year. So wish me good luck and success!
I decided to restart writing my blog. Isn't that good news? One might ask why. Well it's a good question. Mainly because I feel like posting things, most of the time some photos and I feel like saying why I find them the way I do. Does this make sense? So here I go again... pretty soon...
I think I'm going to stop this blog. There's no point in writing things that doesn't interest anybody. Also I haven't been doing anything exciting lately, it's really depressing here in Cambridge. All you can do is focus on your work. And I really miss Nice and the (Mediterranean) sea and sunshine. And palm trees. And the salty fresh smell of the sea, its azure color and walking on the Promenade des Anglais in windy weather and watching the waves break...
Seems that I haven't writtten for almost 3 months... due to the summer break.
So what happened these last 3 months?
First of all, mid July I left Cambridge, went back home to my parents in Germany. Very good friends of mine, Verena and Percy, got married in Starnberg so I went to the wedding. I have never been invited to a wedding before, so I can't really compare, but I liked the wedding ceremony. It was nice and stylish.
A few days later, my parents and I traveled south, to the Cote d'Azur. We spent there two weeks and enjoyed every second of the sunshine. We spent most of the days on the beach, sunbathing and relaxing. I got to see some of the other Ph.D. students of the mathematics institute in Nice at the traditional annual Hungarian lunch at my place, which is prepared every year by my mother and her wonderful culinary skills.
Unfortunately eventually we had to leave Nice and the sunny Cote d'Azur to return to Germany. Back in Germany I met up with some old school friends. It is always nice to catch up with them. I visited Ingolstadt, a town in Bavaria on the Danube between Nuremberg and Munich.
End of August, my aunt from Bulgaria came to see us. She stayed for one week. That was very interesting, since we haven't seen her for 19 years. Unfortunately my cousin couldn't come with her, that would have been cool. So we showed her around, we visited little towns around Altenthann, Nuremberg, we even made a trip to Bamberg. Which is a very nice town north of Nuremberg, its historic town center is well preserved (it hasn't been bombed like Nuremberg) and of course the lovely rose garden is still very beautiful.
After she left us, there was a week left and I left for Cambridge. So here I am again, in Cambridge, continue my studies at the mathematics department. So far the weather hasn't been to bad, it's only cold. But I'm prepared for that, I brought my skiing jacket with me.
I figured it's time to write again, these past weeks flew by very quickly. So here we go...
After the the weekend when Laia and I visited the botanic garden in Cambridge, it was Mayweek (in June ). This is the week when the colleges in Cambridge have their Mayball which is - if I understood it right - a ball after the last exams are over and before people leave on vacation. One of the most famous ones is the one of Trinity College which was on Monday. Some other Ph.D. students from the mathematics department reserved a punt for for that night to watch the Mayball's fireworks from the Cam. Laia and me went along and it was really great. They had music with the fireworks and I really enjoyed it but it was too short and I caught a cold that night, so the following days I spent at home in my bed recovering.
Luckily by the weekend, I felt better, so we could go to visit somewhere. We decided to go to Ely. That is a little town not too far from Cambridge. It has a huge cathedral in the town center and a house where Oliver Cromwell lived for 10 years.
The weather was nice and sunny but very windy that day. I discovered that Ely has something in common with Nice:
There are the same kind of ducks than the ones that live at Parc Valrose! More of my pictures are here.
This week was calm, all the category theorists left for THE conference, which took place in Calais, France this year. My birthday was on Wednesday, so my English flatmate bought a very nice chocolate cake
I invited a few people over to have some of it. In the end there were just us four girls: Laia, Agi, Sandrine and me, but it was enough. Then we went out to a nice bar to have a few cocktails and I had one with an ant in it! Uninteltionally of course. So perhaps it wasn't a nice bar after all. Today Laia and one of the French flatmates returned to their countries and we are supposed to get a new flatmate soon but I miss Laia already! It was great to have her here. I'm already counting the remaining days in Cambridge before I go home for the summer.
I'm still on the rainy island and it still is rainy. Although there are some random sunny days. One of these days was last Sunday when Laia, the "new" flatmate from Spain, and me went to visit London. It was very nice and we did only the touristy things, walk around a lot, take more than a hunderd photos and return to Cambridge in the evening. Here is a summary of my pictures:
All the pictures can be viewed at the usual place. Then we had a quite normal week, I had a little fight with the washing machine over my clothes, I learned to play Doppelkopf with some other Ph.D. students and listened to a seminar talk of the Category Theory people at the mathematics department. Friday Laia and me went to a dinner at one of the Colleges in Cambridge. It was a dinner where people had to dress up a little, but not very formal. The food was good, especially the dessert. Today, Laia and me visited the Botanic Garden in Cambridge. It is very nice, there could have been more flowers though. And again we were lucky with the weather, it didn't really rain. I could take nice pictures of some roses and other flowers:
It was more than a month ago that I updated my blog the last time. Let's see, what happened since?
As usually, the first part of May is almost work-free in France thanks to the two bank holidays, May 1st and May 8th. These two days fell on Thursdays so what you do usually is "faire le pont", which means "do the bridge" when translated literally, to have long weekends of 4 days. This year Monday May 12th was Pentecost, also bank holiday, so most people enjoyed a weekend of 5 days. I had to work though. I had to prepare my talk that I gave on Tuesday after the year's longest weekend. I think it went alright. Before that I had to get the article for our ecole doctorale done. Each Ph.D. student in his second year has to do that. It is a kind of report that we have to write when we're supposed to be half way through with our Ph.D. thesis, that is in the second year. They also organize a mini-conference of a day when some selected students can (=have to) give a short talk and the others can (=have to) present their posters. Luckily I'm free from participating.
I also had a nice farewell party at my place. Most of the other Ph. D. students from the maths institute were invited, some of them actually came and we played lots of games with my favorite being "le loup-garou". It was so much fun that some days after that, Pierre organized another loup-garou night, which was even more fun!
Then I left the sunny Cote d'Azur and arrived in rainy England, in Cambridge. The first 3 days it was raining without stopping. Since Sunday it's nicer but still cold and windy. I'm living in a very nice house in Cambridge, I'm sharing it with 2 French guys from Paris who are doing their internships at the statistics institute and an English guy. Also at the university I was received very nicely, I have an office whose actual occupant I haven't met yet. Everything goes fine. I'm still having a hard time with the traffic; everytime in a car I think that we're going to have a major accident because of driving on the wrong side. Luckily I'm not driving, so this won't happen. As a pedestrian I tend to look in the wrong direction before crossing a road, so I just stick to pedestrian crossings. I have two friends living here, so I met up with both of them, they're being great help in many situations. I also had some time to take some pictures of the city, they can be viewed here. So at last I'll post a picture too. It's a picture of the funniest lamp I've ever seen - it's laughing.
The Ph.D. seminar was over yesterday. It was fun though eventful. It all started with my car breaking down. Actually it did some weird noise and I stopped, discovered that the cooling water was evaporating, stopped then for half an hour and waited for the water to cool down. We tried to continue to Saint Etienne de Tinee, but didn't arrive because the car just stopped 2 km further. Luckily it was just next to a garage, so we pulled over / had to pull over and they took a quick look. They discovered that there's a hole in the cooling system, so I left the car there. The others who arrived already at the guest house, came to pick us up and we got there about 4 p.m. when the talks were supposed to start. Since I was the first one to talk, we delayed all the talks by half an hour. Mine went quite well, only it was too long so I had to skip a proof (a nice stuctural induction) and stopped on time. The other talks were nice too, but some were hard to understand. This is quite natural I think, the research domains are very different. At nights we had the most fun, playing games and having some drinks. I also had people taste original Hungarian körtepalinka. Everybody liked it. The other unplannified event was that a key got stuck in the lock of one of the rooms our people were sharing. So two unlucky guys couldn't get in their room from Saturday night on. And even when they notified the reponsable persons Sunday morning, they told them they have to wait for a craftsmen who would arrive that afternoon. Of course this was after everybody had left at noon. They didn't catch the bus, so the landlady had to drive them back to Nice. In general it was a fun weekend, got too little sleep, a sore throat and broke the car but besides that evrything was fine.
Unfortunately skiing season is over for me. It was nice, got to go 4 times, 3 times to Auron and once to Isola 2000. Today was the last day, and it wasn't particularly nice at Isola 2000 because it was very foggy so that you didn't even see 2 meters ahead of you, so you just couldn't tell anything about the topology of the ski piste ahead. It was also snowing a bit. So we had to go slowly and carefully. Unfortunately the others I went with didn't enjoy it at all and we had to stop early for the lunch and we left early. The skiing resort is at the Italian border, we even could see (despite the fog) some Italian road signs.
Last weekend was actually the contrary: we had very nice weather at Auron, sunshine without any clouds in the sky, and very warm. I didn't put any suncream in my face because I never get a sunburn. Well yeah, in theory in Austria it may be right but not in Southern France. The next day I was like Rudolph , had a bright red nose and red cheeks, unfortunately the contour of my sunglasses figured in my face as well. Luckily I didn't have class until Wednesday morning and by then the redness was almost gone.
Before these two week-ends, I spent a week in Germany at my parents', which was very nice. Met some people, went to Munich, had fun. It flew away very quickly.
At the maths institute the Ph.D. students are all excited about our second seminar in the mountains which will be next week-end. I'm still working on my talk (about the Church-Rosser theorem). Trying to promote the fabulous lambda claculus.
Carnival 2008 started yesterday in Nice. So his afternoon, Charles and I went to watch the "corso carnavalesque". It was fun like every year, here's a picture; apparently that's this year's king: a white cat, very cute...
The last two weekends, I managed to go skiing to Auron, which is about one and a half hour away from Nice by car. The first weekend I went with the Hungarian couple and their friends from the laboratory. And I rented some very nice ski, they were not only pretty (white with pink butterflies) but very easy to control. They just always did what I wanted. The second weekend I went with some guys from the maths institute. We were 4 and it was fun too although I wasn't very happy with the skis I rented that day. Some ugly yellow Salomon ski, never went where I wanted them to go. Luckily I didn't end up in the bushes. I hope skiing season is not over yet, this weekend I had to pass and next weekend I'll be home at my parents'. Maybe I can go a few more times when I'll be back.
I have been a bit lazy with blogging lately. But there's not much I could write of. Let's see...
I spent Christmas at my parents', it was very nice and relaxing like every year, got many nice gifts, got to meet some old friends from school, enjoyed the freaking cold in Germany. Unfortunately there wasn't any snow. The 28th of December I came back to Nice. The battery of my car was dead, so I had to find some nice helpful guy from Nice (Thanks Mimi! ) who would let me connect the battery with his and recharge it. It went all fine. Since then I haven't had any more problems with it. I won't leave it in the park anymore, I put it in the underground parking of the maths institute. I spent for the first time New Year's Eve in Nice. I spent it of course with Charles. For midnight we went out to the Promenade des Anglais. There were many other people but no great fireworks like I expected. Half an hour later we walked back at his palce and had our private party. The beginning of january was calm, I got an appointment for the laser treatment of my eyes and some days later I had the sugery. Everything went fine, I didn't pass out or anything horrible. So I'm very happy now how well I can see with my eyes.
The sales started already, got some nice stuff, it's still on til mid-February. This weekend, Charles and I went to his parents' and spent the weekend there. It was very nice and relaxing, his parents were adorable like the last time too. And the weather was really nice all the weekend, at least 15 degrees celsius in the sunshine.
That's about it for so far, as soon as I'll find something mentionable, I'll post it...