Life goes well. The warmth of summer makes everything better, calmer.
On the academic front, things have gone well for me. I won a competition and was accepted onto a rather cool program that covers all expenses towards the major national chemistry meeting amongst other things. My first publication was submitted to a well-regarded scientific journal (acceptance pending). I got to the end of the academic year with an adequate GPA (lowering the risk I will get kicked out of the program).
This semester was also the one where I joined a gym – unaffiliated with the university, for added peace and quiet – and resumed fitness work. Not that grad school has become any quieter, but I simply decided that my fitness wasn’t something I was willing to put on hold until I obtained my PhD. Besides, the boost to my mental health/energy levels is good for my academic life, too.
I am also finally committing towards driving lessons. I had something of a shock to the system when the supermarket I frequented went into the red and hastily closed down this month. This supermarket was located right in the middle of downtown New Brunswick, easily accessible by (free) public transport with convenient hours. After it shut down I realised that there were no other medium-to-large supermarkets that I could easily access for my weekly food shops: the rest were all out on the mall strip or deep in the surrounding suburbs. It made me realise that without a car, I really am stuck.
Not that I’m going to starve…but until/if a new supermarket chain opens in the same store, my food choices will be limited to what I can find in the downtown RiteAid, or what can be packed into my rucksack for a 30 min bike ride (i.e., not much fresh fruit or veg). Which isn’t ideal.
Damnit, America! You finally beat me. I’m getting a car!