I just passed my qualifying exam this week. After a very stressful phase of 6 weeks, I am finally relaxed. It feels like finishing a full marathon. The project involved working with Nd:YAG based laser. Initial three weeks were full of failures (I have a folder with videos of 100+ failed experiments). Setup finally worked in fourth week after so many modifications . With a feeling to fall short in timeline, I started processing, analysis and report writing simultaneously.
In process, I shifted my working time to night and ended up spending almost every night of last one and half month in the lab. Getting results slowly and working on the project timeline, I tried several parameters and proceeded with the important ones. I finished writing report a day earlier and spent the next day in paraphrasing. At a point, I felt writing is the hardest part in any project. Scientific writing comes with experience, eventually you get it. I am planning to write more… on blog, on updates on my future work and papers (and maybe grants?).
At night, Tech is a different place altogether. I used to go on little walks outside the engineering building for sometime around 3 am. Working at night comes with loneliness – with nearly zero interaction to any friend/co-worker. In terms of weather, working in lab at night was probably better to avoid people in lab while working on laser and commuting in hot sunny days.
I might go for a trip in coming week (south or up north). I have not decided yet. But I am going outside Lubbock for some time for sure. I will be back with some updates from the journey .