Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits

Dear lab pt. 2

This is going to be a short and lazy entry because I’m leaving in 10 hours.

That’s right. Belgium time. I’m more excited than I had anticipated, considering the distance between Bordeaux and Louvain-la-Neuve is about the same as that between Toronto and South Bend, not far at all. This time, I only get to take one luggage on my flight with a limit of 23 kg, though I highly suspect that I’ve gone over already. When I came to France, the Icelandair lady was nice enough not to charge me, even though BOTH of my gigantic bags were overweight. I hope I get lucky with Air France.

So, what’s in Belgium anyway? Beer and chocolate – that’s about all I know. Oh, and mussels, and apparently French fries are actually Belgian. Let’s see if I can get some authentic moule frites over there.

As I prepared to leave Bordeaux and head north, I was shuffling around the lab this week to wrap up my stuff. In doing so, I took some random pictures of stuff we use very often in the lab. You’d be very familiar with most of these if you work in a lab setting, but I found it quite amusing to notice the repetition within some of these items.

We start off by presenting the Eppendorf Man, proudly standing on top of and guarding our centrifuge.

Test tube buried in ice. I think this one contained supernatants from cells after centrifuging, if I remember correctly.

Tiny pipette tips for very small volumes.

Caps for small tubes or aliquots.

Tips of glass pipettes. These ones were very long and very fragile.

6-well plate with cell medium before cell scratching.

Glass vials for silicon samples. I had to prepare 60 samples for a giant experiment a few weeks ago, and keeping track of these little vials became a rather tedious job.

Caps for the aforementioned vials.

Someone’s well plate. I have no idea what the writing indicates.

More pipette tips. Forget about sterility in the chemistry lab. Tips are reused and left out in the open all the time. I suppose sterility is definitely not as crucial here as in cell culture.

Ethanol in increasing concentrations, used to dehydrate samples for SEM.

Old-fashioned test tubes. I don’t see these very often anymore because we always use the plastic ones in the previous photo.

Alright, if everything goes well, then the next entry will be on Louvain-la-Neuve. Hopefully there’s more to this city (or as my dad says, “community”) than what it takes to fill up one entry.


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