Blaze it

Update ahoy;;

Went down to Canberra for 2 days for some a blazer ceremony hurrah.
Yup, fly all of us down to Canberra just for this.

But hey, I'm not complaining. Any free travel for me is always welcome /hint hint/

By 'all of us' I mean the Australian teams for the Science, Informatics and Mathmatics Olympiads.

Anyway, arrived and shown my room.

The place was quite nice, actually.
I received an entire room, meaning I got four beds to myself, a kitchen, a bathroom, air-con, and a TV.
Quite literally, gender barriers.
Thank god it had warm air-con. Canberra was as cold as the Wombat XL Space Simulator (see below)

Also received polos and a tie (the tie is longer than I am...)
Exciting stuff: this year, the ceremony coincided with the opening celebration of the AMO's new website (!!!!!!) so we were all invited to the official ceremony and got a nice little goodie bag.

AMT pencil case? Hell yeah. ((I don't even do Olympiad mathematics.))
Totes bringing it to every school math exam just to intimidate.
 Anyway, the day was rather normal.

Just played cards and settled in. Was missing home quite a bit, and wanted to just go back and study (I live a sad life)

The next morning, waking up at 7 was tiresome. Thankfully I set 2 alarms because my watch didn't go off (LOL. OF ALL THE TIMES.)

I didn't sleep too bad, since the air-con was set to 27 degrees and was keeping me warm.
The next morning was freezing, though. I can tell you for sure that trudging through 7 o'clock weather in a short skirt is very, very difficult to get through.
(pretty sure it was single-digit temperatures)

But, I made it out alive. Barely.

So, we all hopped onto a bus and headed off to the ANU for the official ceremony.
What was strangely thrilling about the entire experience was being in the same room with so many other individuals who were just as passionate about science (and maths and informatics) as me. It felt straaaange.

We were sitting at a table for lunch later on and there were New Scientist magazines strewn across the table. One of us grabs them and we all end up huddling together reading it and trying to solve the math problem at the back.
Then we all just discussed and shared our stories of having an entire stack of New Scientist magazines at home that we've yet to read (I'm surprisingly quite up-to-date compare to the rest of them: Up to May issues).

It's just interesting to be with these people that are so passionate about a particular subject, and so willing to learn and question the world around them in a manner that I resonate with. And yet, at the same time, they also procrastinate (just like me), which makes me feel good.
They pull all-nighters, they leave homework till last, they watch TV and waste countless hours on YouTube, etc., yet they also read New Scientist and read up interesting articles on Science. And (some of them) have a sense of humour, too.

It's just interesting. Not to say that they are the only people I've met who are like this (believe me, I'm friends with people who are just like this, and just as academically talented and driven), it was just refreshing to see so many of them together in a room -- people I'd hardly even gotten to know (DON'T EVEN KNOW THEIR NAMES), yet able to talk to freely about these things.

Also got to meet a couple of very big people, e.g., Adam Spencer (who I now greatly admire), who was a really great person.

Refreshments were nice, and spent a lot of time taking photos with the teams, etc.

Interesting, these muffins were savory.
 Finally it was time to leave Parliament House (where the ceremony was held)
I think I finally understand why the rest of Canberra isn't very /fabulous/ looking: it's to make Parliament House stand out more.
 Then we headed off to Mt Stromlo Observatory, which was really cool (even though I know next to zilch about astrophysics), and we got to see a lot of interesting equipment.

Also they grabbed us for a quick photoshoot for the Canberra Times.

Heading off to the observatory.

The five of us that were photographed got an early visit to the Wombat XL Space Simulation Facility, which was very nice. Got to see the inside of it, too, and one of the workers there talked to us about it. It was pretty interesting, and I learnt a lot (even though I unfortunately didn't understand half of it.)
The five of us spent a lot of time speculating about why it was called the 'Wombat XL'.
And whether they had a souvenir store that sold 'Wombat XXS's or the like.  ("Get your very own Wombat XXS to use around the home, and simulate temperatures down to 10K!")

Slightly bad lighting in the room, so apologies. It was fantastic, though!
Also what I found was particularly cool was the anechoic chamber! Yes, I was very enthusiastic.

IT WAS SO COOL. Not going to lie.
We were allowed to enter it, and we all went up and put one of our ears next to the cones. It was a surreal experience; felt like you went deaf in one ear.
 Walked around a bit more and we were all shown the other cool equipment and rooms at the Observatory.

I thought the 'Clean Room' was a pretty cute place.

This is a picture of the Clean Room, taken from outside a glass screen.
It's so clean in there that there's supposedly not a single speck of dust; entering this room requires a full bunny-suit protection, and they use special grade-10 paper to prevent fibres from being shed into the air.
Quote friend: "Hmm. Looks pretty clean to me. NO WAIT I THINK I SEE A SPECK OF DUST"
 Afterwards, it was finally time to head off and go to the airport.
Returning to the bus.
 Ended up driving home, so endured a long 3 hour car trip.

Very nice meadow :'D

Also my parents bought me a bouquet of flowers, which was very sweet of them (though I insist that they shouldn't have)



Instagram Photostream

About Me

My photo
Hello! I'm a student from Australia. I like photography, am aspiring to be a Doctor, have fallen in love with many things that life has to offer, and hope to see more of it. I've been blogging for a while and over the years what it means to me has changed. Currently still trying to figure that out, but here I am in a weird hybridisation of photography, film, blogging, and the confusion of a young adult, you'll find me here writing about my experiences and life. Or whatever tickles my fancy. Whether that's entertaining or not is yours to decide. Stay hydrated, kids.