Back from La Palma

What time of the day is it? I see that it is bright outside, so it must be during the day, but my biological clock is so screwed up again, I could not tell if it was morning or afternoon… I had enough of this jet lag (or observatory lag in this case) for this year, I am really fed up with it. At the end each of the seven nights went by without major problems and with perfect weather at the Mercator telescope, thus the Master students from Leuven and Amsterdam got plenty of data to work with.

20131008_MilkyWay

It is really exceptional that we had such good meteorological conditions in October. As far as I can recall, there were always at least a few nights lost due to rain/clouds in the past years during the weeks of the master students’ observational projects. This time the students from Amsterdam even gave me a bottle of wine for the help I provided them during the past week! That felt really nice, I have to say. This was the first time I got something like this from students :)

20131014_morningview

I stayed one more night at the observatory (but not at the telescope) before coming home, which I spent studying my Dutch, trying to go through the lessons I had missed during the past two weeks. Then my taxi to the airport almost did not fit my bike box (we had to leave the trunk open and fix everything with ropes…), and my flight also got a three hour delay. And although I specifically went for a direct connection this time, the leg space is so horribly inadequate on these Thomas Cook flights, that now I really do not know what to do next (because having to change two times with IBERIA is also not one of my favourite things). I wish we could just teleport from one place to the other. The weather back home in Leuven is a bit grey, but this time of the year, this is pretty normal. But it is good to be home again. The rest of this week I will have to catch catch up with my work email, my Dutch class, and try to unpack my bags/bike box… Oh, and sleep…

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