One month from now I have absolutely no idea where I’m going to be. Whatever I don’t sell or give away will collect dust in my parents’ basement in Pittsburgh, my paperwork will be submitted for my Physics M.S., and I will be subscribing again to the philosophy that I have the rest of my life to be boring. Yes, it’s time for the next adventure.
The story goes like this: while Case Western Reserve University is a wonderful place to learn and I have made lots of friends, there’s no research here that interests me enough to devote five more years towards it. (In short I want to focus more on astronomy, particularly topics that aren’t studied at our university.) Combine that with six years in Cleveland and how much I hate the winters and, well, while it’s hard to say goodbye it is time to go. I have things to learn and places to see and people to meet and I’m reaching the extent of just how much of that can be done here. There is a new chapter to write even if I can’t definitively tell you what that chapter will be yet.
So what’s next? Well first of all I am applying to Astronomy PhD programs primarily in Europe- I have a Hungarian citizenship meaning I count as domestic in most E.U. countries, which is nice- and in addition to a lot of exciting stuff going on research-wise over there I’m rather enamored with history and culture and the ability to be in a new country in the amount of time it takes me to drive to Pittsburgh. After all I like to travel, and the cool thing about being an expat is how it’s like doing it all the time!
So hopefully one of the flurry of applications will yield an acceptance and my future for the next three years will be more certain than it is now. (Really people, applying to grad school once is bad enough. I wouldn’t recommend doing it twice…) But that won’t start until the fall, so what’s a girl to do until then? When there’s all sorts of cool things out there to do and you’ve spent way too long living in a place with an excessively low cost of living?
If you didn’t know the answer you probably don’t know me very well: I’m going for a wander. There are just too many amazing things out there that I want to see and might not wait for me to see them later (example: did you know they’re building a highway through the Serengeti despite international protest? do wildebeest obey traffic laws now?) and I’ve always wanted to see Mount Everest and China and a bunch of other places anyway. So the plan is to start early next month in Zanzibar and head through East Africa, then Nepal and China, then down towards Australasia (read: too many friends down under who are still miffed I missed them on the last trip). No specific dates as yet because the luxury of such a long amount of time is you don’t need specifics after checking there won’t be a monsoon in town when you are, though details will show up on the itinerary page as I make them. And, obviously, I’ll be writing here and on some other projects, though Facebook and Twitter will probably be more up-to-date more quickly.
That’s all I’ve got for now- I suppose the moral of the story is “watch this space, interesting things should be happening soon!” And if you have any questions/comments/advice about all this, let me know.