This Is Nothing

Insane Graduate School Edition


Snow Trek 2009

Today was a serious snow day. Nearly every thing in Madison was shut down: from the metro bus to the UW Madison campus to the 24/7 grocery store. Because the buses weren't running, I ended up not going to work today, which at first was pretty lame. I've got lots of lab work to do before the end of the year, and it's hard to take a day off. But to walk to lab would be l.5-2hours of questionable terrain each way, and the temperature was predicted to drop rapidly as evening approached. It just wasn't worth it.

So it was looking like a stay-in-the-apartment-all-day sort of day, until I realized I had to get my fellow grad student Sarah her paper edits. I contemplated transcribing them into an e-mail, but that was just a little too tedious. So I decided to bundle up in my winter gear and hike over to Sarah's house, which is about 1/2 the distance to lab.

It ended up being a magical adventure day. Over the years I've accumulated good snow pants, boots, gloves, and even a ninja-like mask to cover my face, so I was fully prepared for the journey. Of course, I fell almost immediately after making it outside my door, but thankfully my hip is still young.

Growing up on a country ridge, a blizzard meant you weren't going anywhere or seeing anyone outside your house for a couple days. Here in Madison, well, even serious winter weather isn't nearly as, well, serious. I'm within walking distance of grocery stores and even a Starbucks, for goodness sake! During my trek to Sarah's I greeted many other bundled pedestrians, and even a cute black lab. It was a forced holiday for alot of people, myself included. My mini-vacation was a hike around Madison while the snow was still fresh and clean white.

Once I made it to Sarah's I was able to un-bundle myself and chat over hot cocoa and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies. Since Sarah is graduating in less than 1 month, and I'm entrenched in writing a paper, we rarely see each other, which sometimes makes me sad. On the front end of the graduate school experience we spent alot of time together, but near this end we've just gotten too busy. The snow day surprised me with a chance to catch up!

I managed to make it all the way back home, and now I get to settle in for the rest of the evening. Tomorrow will be frantic catch-up at work, but there is nothing I can do to prevent that. . . time for a long soak in the tub and an evening of putzing around the apartment. Hope everyone had a lovely snow day!


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