Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits

Tag Archives: cleanroom

Wait, what do you mean I’m doing a PhD…

Sometimes I forget the reason why I’m in Europe in the first place. In the midst of hopping every few months between France and Belgium for work, I have been mesmerized by the discovery of the backyard which is Europe. Somewhere along the road, I think I am slowly starting to forget that my purpose here is to get my PhD.

Wait, what? PhD, that can’t be right…

But indeed, something struck me like an epiphany last week, as I was working in the lab. PhD…that’s serious business. I have to write a thesis and defend it in about a year and 8 months…um, whaaaaaaaat?

Usually I get shocked by sudden realizations when things don’t work out at the lab, leading to frustration. And indeed, work hasn’t been proceeding as planned lately. I also noticed that I’m almost halfway into my supposed 3-year PhD, and it’s a little scary to admit that I don’t have nearly as much done as I THINK I should.

Of course, all my friends see is me travelling here and there every weekend, enjoying the freedom of the “European lifestyle” and experiencing what the world has to offer. No one really sees between the weekends, where hours are spent on trying to get one process to work, where frustration and disappointment turn into silent curses, where time is too precious to lose.

Just some thoughts…let’s reflect on them with a walk through a weekday in the “real” life of Annie.

Annie’s desk at work in Belgium…messy or not?

When there is nothing to worry about, it’s so easy to say, “Do not worry about tomorrow.” (Matthews 6:34). However when it does strike, worrying can be so nerve-wrecking. When I have to delay an experiment because a chemical is out of stock or an equipment is booked, I can’t help but worry about the progress of my work.

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