Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Last night

Big Thank YOU to Cathy, Dr. Roesch, and Emory

Last night in Finland

What an opportunity. I really would never have imagined being here, traveling around Europe, and learning so much in only three months time in our first IRES meeting. I can NOT WAIT to tell you all about the data - which is, admittedly, still in the middle of processing. It was the most difficult research I've ever experienced, but nothing can compare to the amount of new information and techniques I've learned.
I've been staying in lab until 11PM or midnight each day for the past two weeks, but hopefully I will continue further M/EEG analysis when I get back to Atlanta Friday.

Pictures as promised. Not too many because most of the pictures are on Ashley's camera.
More Geneva. It was quite raining.. unfortunately

Barcelona imported the sand on their beaches from Egypt, and their palm trees are on loan from Hawaii. Yes, on loan. That's how the US Govt makes their money?

Taking drinks from underground wells in Rome was pretty neat.

Inside Pantheon #2

Vatican was less than impressive

Exploding earth in the middle of the Vatican museum? Hmmmm

Wimbledon - Centre Court

He was angry for not getting tickets to Harry Potter the previous night

Tallinn walls

On a boat to Estonia. Tallinn was really beautiful for sure.

Man, these look good!

Being in London the night after the riots subsided was epic.
Final meeting with my P.I. today - so hard to say goodbye...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Nearing the End

So I tried uploading my London pictures, but the uploading thing isn't working. Sorry guys!

I have less than a week left now:(, so I'm starting to wrap things up. I finished all of the FRAP analysis today. It's bittersweet, but I think it's time for me and the confocal to depart. Much time has been spent in the dark cursing at the microscope who just stands there and doesn't fight back. I pretty much have all of my data in this graph pad program, so I will run all of the statisical tests tomorrow! Fingers crossed. I already started working on my intro, and all of my explaining figures are less work to do for the poster when I return home. Yay!

I'm currently knees deep in secondaries right now. I sent five off already, but another five are waiting to be completed. I finally got the essay that I have been dreading to answer...who knew it would take 10 secondaries to finally come to the dreaded question? Hopefully I will get those sent off before classes begin. I think I can do it! One of my credit cards are maxed out, though, so I'm ready for the plight of the secondaries to be over.

Today I went to the Botanical gardens with my roommates. It was really pretty, and the rose garden is still in bloom:) I quite enjoyed it. The other American in the lab and I decided that we're going to make pumpkin pie since only one other person in the lab has had it. It's a shame, you that long without eating pumpkin pie. Our plan is to take over Dublin, one pumpkin pie at a time:). This weekend some of my friends and I are going to Howth, this area near the coastline. It's supposed to be absolutely brilliant...and there are seals. Can't get any better than that.

I started packing today since the coming days are going to be pretty crazy. It's sad to think that this will be my last week of eating scones every day. I have come to learn and appreciate so much, but I will save those remarks for my blog.

Until then...

Friday, August 5, 2011

Wrapping Up

Alright, so Oxford is an incredible place to host people because it's easy to show off and there's lots to do! Philip May (left), an Emory alum studying at U of St Andrews on the Bobby Jones Award, came down to visit at the same time Andrew Harper (right) from Darlington was interviewing for a medical residency at Oxford's JR Hospital. Here we are at Moo-Moo's, a touristy favorite ice-cream/smoothie stand.

One of my favorite signs I've seen in England so far. For one, it's so true. The British drink tea at so many weird times of the day, it's astounding. But I thoroughly enjoy it all of those times as well: Earl Grey, Assam, Green, Wildberry, and Cream Tea each have a special place in my heart :) No wonder they weren't able to let go of India until after World War II...

I was in London for the "One Year to Go" ceremony - only 366 days (Leap Year) until the Olympics! Here I am in front of the countdown sign in Trafalgar Square, with a patriotic hobo who was jumping in everybody's picture. They had tents to make Origami shapes out of paper with the flag of your country on it. There were a lot of Jamaicans there... There was also ping-pong: I beasted at that table, good fun :)

This is the Said Business School Cycle Team for the British Heart Foundation's fundraising ride from Oxford to Cambridge. A solid 88-miles, perfect weather, and cheerful company made it brilliant! From Right to Left: Tim Morris, Jonathan & Janina Pownall, Steve, and Me. I got a brief cycle tour of Cambridge from Tim (alumnus of Jesus College) when we got there: particularly impressed by King's College Chapel (constructed from 1446-1515 between Henry VI & Henry VIII) and Magdalene College, which also had the punting boats like Oxford. Wish I had time to see more!

After a fun time in the park on a Saturday afternoon with friends (feeding ducks), I decided to take a picture in front of the Rhodes House garden. They were having a reception inside for current and former students... how cool would it be to be a Rhodes Scholar? Congrats to all those from Emory who have won one!

On Tuesday, I had a great chat with my P.I. at work. It's time to begin data analysis in earnest and writing up results, as well as making plans for how to continue the research in my final semester at Emory. It's been such a rewarding and educational experience, and I can't imagine learning at this rapid a pace for the rest of my life - though I'm eager to do so whenever the opportunity presents itself.

Lastly, I spent the last two days camping with best buds in Rora, England - near Dartmoor National Park. It was an amazing Christian camp, with the friendliest people and most fascinating atmosphere of community I've experienced in a LONG time. Life was meant to be more like this. The views from the top of Haytor Rock were incredible, as well as Widecombe church and Trago Mills. I finally got to participate in a football tournament! 6-on-6, all guts, no glory. Loads of fun :)

Dam, Bruxelles, La Ville-Lumière, Capitale de la Paix

So flat.

Mom, I'm playing with fire!

Dudes in the back are about to stab us in Dam Square.

Local game is to throw bikes into the canals. Very fun.

Secret garden, Begijnhof

See, couchsurfing ain't so bad.

Into the Dutch country.

Clogs, cheese, and more cheese.

I wonder if these are better than modern windmills.

Probably not.


Night photos are difficult to take without a tripod.

Yup, very difficult indeed.

I'm supposed to be lucky now.

I am indeed very lucky. (to have her). **AWWWWW**

I Lol'ed when I saw this picture.


Chillin like a Frenchman at Luxembourg

Pantheon #2 (Paris) < Pantheon #1 (Roma)

If a man puts out the eye of a patrician, his eye shall be put out
If a man knocks the teeth out of another man, his own teeth will be knocked out

OMG OMG!! Everyone rush into this room to take a picture with this awesome thing!
"Brad Pitt!!" "Tom Brady!!" "Madonna!!"

"No.. actually.. guys.. It's the Portrait of Lisa Gherardini, wife of Francesco del Giocondo - a 30"x21" painting valued at over $800million."

"Oh... well, whatever! It's famous and I love following hordes of people! I want to take a picture of it so that I can be like the 6 million people who visit it every year. Wait, so how did it become so famous?"

"Because it was stolen in the year 1911"

"Whatever, I'm still gonna shove 50 people out of my way to get in front and take a picture of it."

"You know you can find prints and copies online for free, right?"

*Shove* *Shove*

My reaction to the steaming hot pyramid.

Do I look triumphant?

Le Arc de Triomphe de l'Etoile - celebrating all of French's illustrious military victories. [Sarcasm intended]

My secret spy camera in use. "I waited 4 hours in line for this!!" (Seriously.. I zoomed in from the picture on top)

Pretty sure my feet were hurting real bad at that point.

Oooo glitter!

Versailles was less than impressive. Fountains weren't even running.

A French military ceremony impeded our way into seeing Napoleon's tomb.

Worth it? Had some nice duck outside of Montmatre

Good times, good times.

More Geneva (maybe), Barna (Barcelona), Roma (+Vatican), London (Fish n Chips), Helsinki (Huh?), and Tallinn (Disneyworld) to come.

Monday, August 1, 2011

More Recent

Right: yes, at the start of July I went to France for a few days... got to see the end of the first stage of the Tour de France at Les Herbiers. It was legit! I was there with a politician from South London who knew all about the history of it, too. About half a kilometer past us was the 60-person bike crash. Spectators need to pay attention!!! People die on the Tour almost every year. Pretty intense sport. Oh, and they were cycling UPHILL at over THIRTY mph!

Below: I stayed one day in Paris with my Aunt Michele, and met up with former Emory Provost and good friend Santa Ono, who was in Paris for a science conference. Amazing company in an amazing place! The Bastille was truly beautiful - wish I had more time to spend at the Champs d'Elysees and the Louvre. However, I had an amazing picnic dinner on the steps of Montmartre my last night there - July 4th. Last night, I watched the French rom-com Amelie, which is filmed almost entirely in that part of town.

Other pictures include the Top Right: picture of me on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower. Couldn't be a happier tourist. Absolutely lovely! Bottom Right: Clifford Tower in York. I took an amazing trip there with friends from Sheffield, one of whom lives within 15 minutes of me in Virginia - but I never met her until I got to England! Bottom Left: Julie Whitehead, one of only two certified Laughter Ambassadors in the UK. Here we're demonstrating the pain threshold assay with a blood pressure cuff. Great way to kick it off!

I've now been to three different Laughter Club sessions, all of a very different nature. A month's time is a reasonable span for collecting pilot project data, as this is the first being done. The economic game that subjects have been playing afterward as a control, combined with the modified ultimatum game which I will detail on the poster - present some provocative suggestions about human nature, again contradictory to rational economic theory.

Even more interesting has been the participant feedback in interviews afterward, and the amount that it teases the brain to think this way on a micro-cosmic level. Almost all subjects indicated it would likely affect the way they approach how they handle money on the macro-cosmic level in the future. I can't wait to summarize this in a paper - I'm sure that's where it starts to get more sticky, though.

Since Blogger is still being annoying, I might have to do one more post to get a few pictures up...