Monthly Archives: June 2011

Kilkenny: The Perfect Irish Town

I spent an unexpected few days in Ireland on my way home to the United States from Europe, but as everyone knows this is no great hardship.  I’d visited the country two years ago so I was determined to explore a few places I missed the last time around, which is how I ended up spending a few days in Kilkenny, about 90 km southeast of Dublin.  And I am so glad I did because it turns out Kilkenny is the perfect Irish town! Continue reading

As Seen in Astronomy Magazine

I just accomplished an old dream of mine: I went to my local bookstore, found the July 2011 Astronomy magazine on the rack, and purchased a copy that has an article written by me in it.  Just like that.

Ok, well not quite just like that- I sent the query article about a year ago, had to write and then do some changes on the thing, and then paid attention to other things until my parents wrote to me a few weeks ago saying a few issues of Astronomy and a rather nice check had arrived at their house (the issues were unfortunately waterlogged a little en route hence me buying new ones, but I would’ve wanted to go buy one myself anyway for novelty purposes).  But for someone who read the magazine religiously as a young teenager- seriously, they fell apart!- it’s honestly jarring to look at my own words there and how professional they look.  Strange thing to quip, it’s not like I want a hundred thousand people to read something that looked bad, but I suppose this is the advantage of editors who know better than you.

So if you have a moment over the next few days pop over to your own bookstore, library, or Nook and check out the Astronomy July 2011 issue.  My article is on page 50, “Visit Northern California’s Top Astronomy Sites.”  (Yep, an astronomy travel article- gotta write what you know!) I’m rather proud of it, though it makes me wonder which kid reading my words over and over will be the competition a decade from now…

A Weekend in Berlin

Posted from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA- yes, I made it home after four months, but there’s always more to write about!

Firstly, in order to explain just what I was doing in Berlin I’d need to introduce you to my friend Katherine-

Katherine and I are best friends who first met when we were 11 years old at the 6th grade Labor Day pool party where she noticed me because I was the only one not going into the water and instead reading a book. (I don’t remember the details of this, actually, because apparently I had my nose in a book.  I was “that” kid in middle school.) Katherine’s been working in London this past year, so when I suddenly found myself on the same continent we arranged to travel for a weekend together and ended up choosing Berlin. Continue reading

Fall Preview: An American Astronomer in Amsterdam

This post is primarily supposed to be a statement that I will be moving to Amsterdam in September to start an Astronomy PhD, but because I can’t just make a statement when there’s a good story to be had I will instead begin in Beijing, China about two months ago. Continue reading