Small Moments

For 15 minutes every morning, the rising sun shines onto Purdue’s buildings at just the right angle to convince the PUR-B running group that Indiana can, in fact, be beautiful sometimes. I’m not usually a runner, but something about those brief golden minutes experienced together every morning convinces me to haul myself out of bed at 6:15 am. There’s something beautiful in the knowledge that no matter how chaotic our lab experiments get, we’ll still run through the sunbeams, sprinklers, and somewhat disconcerting smells of West Lafayette the next morning, so shout out to Grace, Victoria, Diego, Shelby, and Julia M for running with me!

Today we found ourselves with a surprisingly relaxed schedule, meaning our class finally got to address the questions that actually matter, like: what music does Dr. Hall listen to? (Answer: epic film music apparently?? Go follow him on Spotify–his account is literally just his name) Today was a catch-up day in the lab, but against all odds, pretty much every group had already completed yesterday’s enzyme assay, so on the “working hard” to “hardly working” scale, most of us were solidly in the latter half. I, for one, spent a solid 30 minutes finding an aesthetically appealing theme for a powerpoint presentation about our fungal pathogens due next Tuesday, so I’d like to thank my labmates Nathan and Dimitra for putting up with that.

By lunch, the clear skies had faded into gentle rain. After getting my daily dose of suspiciously low-priced sushi, I wandered back to the lab while chatting with Shelby, Kevin, and William. Many of us (myself included) indulged our caffeine habits to ensure that we would stay awake for our weekly guest lecture. 

As it turned out, we needn’t have worried about falling asleep, because our lecturer, Briony Horgan, spoke very engagingly on the Mars rovers and astrogeology. Between the Argonne lab trip and this lecture, I know I’m not alone in considering switching subjects entirely. It was surprisingly enjoyable to hear about something other than proteins, even if I do love little squiggly biological polymers far more than space rocks.

Now, after dinner, I’m back in the lab, working/hanging out with a bunch of friends. If the rain clears up, maybe we’ll go to the parking garage (hippest spot in West Lafayette) later!

When I realized today was my blog day, I can’t deny a little disappointment as I realized nothing “special” was happening today. But I hope I have given you a little slice of life at SSP when we aren’t in a frenzy finishing experiments. Not every day is packed with big moments like realizing that your protein is insoluble or that the R² value on your standard curve is 1. Sometimes, a day is just a lot of small moments–having coffee with friends, goofing off in lab, watching the rabbits or the food-delivery robots, eating together in PMU, promising to kick each other if necessary to stay awake in lecture, and laughing as we walk to and from CHAS or Wiley–but I think these are the moments I will miss the most after SSP, even if they are small.

Running Gang!! (minus Julia today, because she made a respectable effort to actually get enough sleep)
Aniyah, 6:10 pm, wearing heels to dinner and carrying an umbrella despite it not raining even a little: “I’m not an idiot, I’m a girlboss”

Aniyah, 6:16 pm: “Hiii does anyone have bandaids TY 🤡 ❤️”

Also pictured: Brian carrying an umbrella over his head despite, again, there being literally no rain
Around half the people working in CHAS tonight! I couldn’t get a picture with everyone since I’m no photographer but everyone’s presence was appreciated. I have so much love for everyone in this program!!

Hi! My name is Della, and I’m a homeschooled student from Charlotte, North Carolina. When I’m not chasing my dreams of becoming a mad scientist, I can be found drawing, singing, hiking, baking, or lying on the grass outside.