After a nightmare trip back from Boston last night, I finally got home at 2am after 6 days away on a semi-vacation. The first half of it was a true vacation, spending 2 full days in St. Thomas with Shannon (yay!). I have a few pictures that I’ll put up soon. I learned a lot about how to take a Caribbean vacation, about which I was apparently woefully undereducated. I got a little sunburned (it’s almost gone now), but overall I had a really good time! It was nice to get away and not worry about work for a while.
But not for too long, because the second half of my trip was to Boston (Woods Hole actually) with my adviser to go to a science meeting for two upcoming missions to the Moon. It was so cool! I definitely learned a lot about how the politics of science works, and also about how the data-collection works on missions like this too. The mission that Oded is working on is LOLA, the Lunar Orbital Laser Altimeter, which is scheduled to launch in Febuary next year. The other one is called GRAIL, and it’s basically a lunar analog of GRACE, which just completed 5 years of mapping the Earth’s gravity field really accurately. It was neat to be in with all of the really famous smart people joking around with each other, and overall I think I made a pretty good impression too.
I also found out that my oral exam has been scheduled for Sept. 22nd – that’s really soon! I was expecting it to be mid-October, so I’m a little surprised. It means I better start working more..starting tomorrow because I really needed today to recover…
Oh, and I missed an earthquake! I’m kind of sad about that, since I haven’t been through one yet. It was a 5.something with no injuries or anything. Jon missed it too – he was in Boston for work until yesterday too.