Thursday, November 25, 2010

At first I didn't understand the enormity of the question. And when I did, I didn't know how to stop myself from screaming from the rooftops! (this was immediately remedied by lack of rooftop and sub-zero temperatures).
I (that is my colleague and I, the two people on this project) have been invited to - hold your breath - design exhibits for the Solvay Exhibition! *looks around at the complete lack of response, at the puzzled looks, and at some politely smiling as if to say 'umm oh that's great!'*
So to make you understand the enormity of this let's journey back - The Solvay Conference in 1922 was the first world Physics conference. The International Solvay Institutes for Physics and Chemistry, located in Brussels, were founded by the Belgian industrialist Ernest Solvay in 1912 (thank you Wiki!).
Still not impressed?
Maybe this will change your mind- the most famous Solvay Conference was held in 1927. A man was talking about a certain Principle when one of the attendees remarked 'God does not play dice' which was countered by another attendee - "Stop telling God what to do". Ring any bells?
That's right! Einstein vs. Bohr, Solvey 1927!
And where do I fit in in the scheme of things - well things seem to have come full circle - I need to make the younger generation understand what the older generation did - build the bridge as it were.

Friday, November 19, 2010

She left her French beret in Spain

The upside of 'the institution' is that you always have someone to go on holiday with - which can also been the downside. An impromptu holiday in Madrid was the perfect way to find out which side of the line I was on.
I never pegged myself a city-lover. Born as I was to parents for whom this was always a point of contention, my father being a city man and my mother a small town gal (in their likes that is), and harboring the romantic notions resulting from a childhood diet of Enid Blytons - I always thought myself a small town girl, a small village girl even (somethingortheotherShire).
Needless to say I went to Madrid with no expectations and what I felt left me wondering how many facets of myself I am unfamiliar with.
I loved the city, the shops, the dreadful (but refreshingly familiar) restaurant chains punctuating the main street. And the people. See, the problem with Brussels is not the dirt, the inefficiency, the lethargy or the weather, the problem with Brussels is its people. They look like they were the supporting cast for a holocaust movie and no one said 'cut'.
And, as is the nature of such things, the much awaited break went by much too fast. So far still walking the upside.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

It is a seeping kind of cold. Not the kind to be warmed up by a fireplace or a steaming hot mug of tea. It is a creeping kind of cold. The kind that steals up behind you and before you know it it's not just the weather that is cold - it is you.