A day of “wait, what??”

I feel bad for not writing much so far, but I guess that’s what happens when you start a journal right before the crazy work weeks+finals week. Good thing I have another bus ride today.
It really is unfortunate timing with work and school. Add to that one of my professors neglecting to give us quizzes and assignments throughout the class (60% of our grade), and then tacking them all to the last two weeks-that was an awesome announcement. And then I got home and opened a thing from school that turned out to be my tuition tax statement that says I got $788 in scholarships/grants, which is totally news to me. Then as I was checking to see if I could find anything about that online, and I checked my transfer application to the 4 year school, and there’s a notice that they’re missing my high school transcripts. Which would be fine except a) I already have a BFA, soooooo, and b) my current school is in the same system. I gave them my high school transcripts. Can they not share this? Also, I got in to the school I’m in now, proof that I already gave them. On and on. Truly ridiculous.
Point being, yesterday was frustrating. I’m trying to get better about dealing with that, and just letting it go (after some healthy yelling) and just doing what needs to be done. It’s tougher when you get three “wait, what??” moments in a day. But that day is over, and today I will make some phone calls from work, and I will stay up late working on my papers and lab reports and powerpoints and I will drink all the coffee I need to work my crazy schedule, and in two weeks it will all be over and done and I can sleep until it all starts again.


Little cat feet


(I hope this works, I’m testing out posting photos from my phone) This morning I woke up to a nice dusting of snow. I think winter should always look like this, with a couple days of foot or so deep storms. Earlier in the morning, a neighborhood cat had trotted across the driveway, hopped onto my stoop and went down the other side and on their little cat way with their little cat errands. I always imagine that outdoors cats have a mental checklist of places to go and things to check on. Tracking is one of the main things I miss doing, so it was lovely to have the tracks come to me this morning.

Into the unknown. And back to work.

The last few days have been packed with school and work. I haven’t been this busy in a while and it’s been a little hard to adapt. Right now I’m waiting for the bus to NJ for more work. Yay money, boo losing a day of writing and studying.
The exciting bit of the week has been figuring out my unknown in microbiology. I know I’m a huge nerd for saying this, but it’s been so exciting! We all picked out a labeled broth tube-I went with 14C, and started doing tests to determine the bacterias genus and species. I’m 90% sure I have Micrococcus roseus but I’m waiting on a couple more tests to be completely sure. But, I had distinctly gram positive (purple, after a staining process) cocci (balls) in clusters with a few tetrads here and there. My colony had a vaguely pinkish blush to it, it produced bubbles when doused with hydrogen peroxide, but best of all when I did a motility test I saw little clear bunches of dancing grapes. It’s been a fun time. It’s also been made a lot easier because they gave us a list of all the possible ones, so you just eliminate a bunch with your gram test (that got me from 27 down to 7) and then keep looking up differences between what you have left and figure out what tests differentiate them.
I’ve also been applying to summer programs and schools like crazy. My micro teacher wrote me a letter of recommendation that is just… Holy wow. I should be able to get into anything based on that alone. We’ll see how it goes, but I’m pretty hopeful. It made me blush, it was so nice. And I’ve earned it, I think, but seeing that someone else sees and appreciates my effort and enthusiasm and having it all on paper is a pretty big boost. I might print it out and read it whenever I feel discouraged.
So, not outside as much as I’d like, partially because of being busy (though I did work outside for 9 hours the other day) and partially because New York has finally kicked in to real winter cold, but still getting to do things and explore, just this time in the microscopic world.

Little cat feet

When I left for school this morning, it was snowing lightly, and I found cat tracks! I know. But, tracking was my favorite part of Namibia, and it’s not something I get to practice in New York so much. So, seeing cat tracks in fresh snow cheered me up a lot. Enough so that I forgot to take a picture. Whoops.
I had this big grand plan about resurrecting my raccoon project this year, really going for it, visiting the park every day with binoculars and camera and mapping the park and everything. Then the seasonal depression hit even more, and that kind of sank. I’m starting to revive and pull myself out of the slump, but it’s rough. I just want to sleep all the time and since sleep is nice, that’s a hard thing to buck. This morning with the snow reminded me that I still want to get up and go wander around in the woods, even with my cozy cozy bed. Maybe tomorrow afternoon I’ll go check out the park and get started on mapping it. I found an app that does tracks and can export to my GIS program. Fingers crossed that I can figure all that out.