Hey guys, I know you haven’t heard from me in a while. And I apologize for that! I just want to give you a little update, how life has been here in Cambridge in my first four weeks. Where should I start? First of all, Cambridge is a lovely city. Really small, though. But that does not bother me because it makes it easier to find one’s way. I went punting this weekend which was really nice as well. All the colleges are really impressive. But I have to admit that I am not so talented in punting
I am much more talented for rowing. Yes, according to Cambridge traditions I started rowing. By this time, I am rowing already four times a week (two sessions on the water and two sessions on ergs inside). I really enjoy it (except for the outings in the morning for which I have to get up at 6:15AM because we have to be at the boat house at 7AM). In a couple of weeks, we already have a competition coming up. Let’s see how good we will be at this point. We are 8 persons in the boat but just started rowing all at one time. Consequently, the boat is still really unbalanced but I am sure we will figure out quickly how it works. At least our coach is really satisfied with us.
Furthermore, I really enjoy being part of a college. At first I thought it will annoy me, but it is completely the opposite: I really enjoy it! I love to go to formals and wear my gown.
There are always four courses served plus Sherry and Portwine. For the main courses everybody is allowed to bring wine. Usually after formal we are going tour bar which is reconstructed recently. Some people say it looks like a strip club (just the poles are missing). I kind of see the association because the main colour of the college is pink. Therefore we have pink lights all over the bar. Sometimes after the bar (after we had more cheap drinks; Rum and coke is about 1,80 Pound) we are heading out to a club which suits me not really well because I always have to go to the lab the day after. Speaking of lab, I really like my lab in which I am doing my first rotation. Although there are only postdocs, they are all really funny and welcoming! They are not as nice as you guys but they go to a pub every Wednesday after work. Brits!!!
The group is also focussed on hematopoietic and leukemic stem cells. I am working with a CBP knockout mouse model which develops leukemia after about a year. As it is almost the same topic, it was quite easy for me to catch up. We are currently setting up a single cell sort, which I find particularly exciting. My boss, Brian Huntly, is really nice as well. I am having a meeting with him every week which I find really supportive. My supervisor is also really nice (but I had much more fun in working with my Herzblatt!). She has a seven month old baby. At the beginning I was a little bit annoyed because I wasn’t allowed to do anything. I just watched how she casted a gel or flushed bones. But now she got, that I can do it as well!
Forthermore, her baby is sick so that she can’t come to work and I have to carry out all experiments (ehich is currently almost Western Blotting). My room in the college is also okay. It is not as big and pretty as my room in Heidelberg but it is totally sufficient. I have got everything that I need and my parents sent me the rest
I live really close to town (maybe 10min walking distance to the city centre) which I found is really convenient in the night
Last but not least some words about my new college family. They are both really nice. I spent a lot of time with my Dad since he is also at every party, formal dinner and rowing session. My brother is also nice but not really talkative. Therefore, I organized a dinner yesterday to integrate a little bit more. This worked out really well but who would not feel comfortable while eating a lovely German meal
So I think we will spend more time as a family now
Finally I just wanted to add that I already really settled down here. I found already a couple of friends and I am never alone. There are in total 7 Germans who started with me as a graduate student this year. But also the British people are really nice! I really enjoy my time in Cambridge so far! I hope you are all doing well??? Are there any news from Heidelberg? What is going on in the lab? I hope I will hear from you and I promise that I will post more from now on. Love you, guys!