Today, I drove for some large number of hours to get to Princeton. Traffic wasn’t too bad, despite it being Thanksgiving. I hit a pocket of heavy traffic about 20 miles out, but it didn’t last too long. Only one truck tried to kill me, so overall, not a particularly exciting drive, I guess. I arrived in Princeton at about 6:30 in the evening. Ifni and I proceeded to go shopping for food for the coming days, and then went out to dinner at an Indian restaurant. We made the mistake of getting chilli naan bread, which meant that the naan was spicier than the food, and both of us ended up drinking a lot of water to offset the spiciness rather than eating more bread Afterwards, we returned to her abode, and proceeded to talk. Six hours later, we decided that bed might be an idea (that’s about now – 4 am).
We exchanged Christmas presents (as has become tradition between the two of us at Thanksgiving). Ifni gave me the latest book in the Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold, “Cryoburn”. I’ve read all of the other books in this series (and there are a fair lot of them); overall, I highly recommend them. I even own physical copies of a bunch of them. So, I look forward to reading this one.
Given that it is Thanksgiving, perhaps we should reflect on what we’re thankful for this year. As I wrote to Ifni, these past few months have been the happiest of my PhD, and for that I am thankful. A few things have come together to make this so. Firstly, my advisor saw fit to fund me this year, which means that I haven’t had to teach. So, thankyou Eanna – I really appreciate it. Secondly, and in my mind more importantly, the companionship my friends have extended to me the past few months has really lifted my spirits. Perhaps I’ve reached out to my friends more in my newfound spare time, or maybe you’ve all decided to be there for me all of a sudden. Regardless, I’d really like to extend a great big thankyou to everybody who has reached out to me of late. You know who you are.
I’m going to be in Princeton for the next three and a bit days, which will hopefully be enough time to catch up on everything with Ifni. Nowadays, it seems that we see each other for maybe 15 days a year if we’re lucky. It’s heartening to know that that’s all that we need to keep our friendship strong. And then of course, there’s skype…