2 months down

I’ve been here 2 months now! It’s hard to believe.

Things are going really well. My research is advancing nicely. Mostly I’ve been writing and running simulations. The paper is done for the most part. I’m just waiting for edits from a coauthor, and I’ll submit. The simulations all seem to support the work I’m doing with my cloud survey, which is very nice. It’s a happy day when your simulations match your observations – at least part of what you are doing is not wrong!

I’ve started teaching myself Python. It’s a computer programming language. I’ve put off learning a language (well) for too long, and now I’ve got to get this done. Progress is good, and the book I have makes learning easy. It’s called Learning Python for absolute beginners, and each chapter introduces only a few new things, so I’m never biting off more than I can chew.

My French is coming along. I’ve been reading a lot. As my vocabulary grows I watch more movies and TV. I do a conversation exchange with a native French speaker. My classes are going fine. They are not enough though, and I will take more classes in the spring. I feel like I could learn more with more exposure – hence living here.

As far as everything else goes, my life is pretty tame. I work a lot, probably more hours than in Austin. Since I live so close to work – it’s just 100 meters or so – I don’t spend as much time away from home or work. Of course in Paris, it’s my fault if I don’t get out. Still, motivating myself to walk around along in cold, wet weather is not as easy as I would like.

There is not much else to discuss. Today is my mom’s 60th birthday (Happy Birthday Mom!). I’ve already called, and the post card is on the way. Thanksgiving is next week. I’m supposed to eat with the other Fulbrighters in Paris. It will be good to have people I can talk to about such an important holiday. Europeans only vaguely know about it. One colleague complains that the US stock market is closed on Thanksgiving. That’s the only reason he knows about it at all.

So, life is good and everything is progressing. I’m looking forward to May when I can start the job at SwRI in Boulder. They decided to hire me even after taking this position in Paris. I am a luck guy! Summer in Colorado should be better than winter in Paris. Fingers crossed.

50,001 Photos

Earlier yesterday I checked and found that I was fast approaching 50,000 photos.  The weather was especially nice, and the leaves are changing colors, so it seemed like a good idea to snap some pictures.

I liked this one a lot.  The kissing couple really sets up the scene.  So, let’s celebrate 50,000 !!!

I moved!

Out with the old, in with the new. I moved, basically, and the new apartment is great. It’s a very short walk from my office (detrimental actualy) but very close to the river and some of my favorite views Nothing at all to complain about. I liked old location too, but I can get there quickly enough, and I have more time now to read and study. Life is good.

Here are a few shots from the rooftop of the previous place. And yes, it was very steep, and yes, it was very dangerous. To take these I stood on a ledge not more than 10 inches wide, below that was the steepest roof you can imagine, and below that was only another tiny ledge before a sheer fall 8 floors. Still, worth the effort.

From the center of town you can see (in order) the Eiffel Tower; Opera; Sacre Coeur; Defense; Notre Dame

Then Mont Parnasse, Pantheon, and Napolean’s Tombe; and a bunch of cool rooftops

I made a panorama you might enjoy. Click this link to see. Also, click any of the thumbnails above for larger images.


And in with the new. This place is more modern than that last one. I’m pretty sure that the architect was a child and had never lived on his own before. The kitchenette is “small on everything but frustration,” and the bathroom only makes sense if you want a lot of water to get on your solid oak floor.

The view isn’t bad though. I can see the river, Tour Saint Jacques, and if I stick my head out far enough part of Notre Dame appears. Not bad. I’m also building my French book library. Some are borrowed, so I’ve got more than enough to read for this year.

That weird shaped building is the Institute of the Arabic World. It’s a little odd considering that this is primarily a science institution. Still, not a bad place to live.