Another week's gone past and the light is slowly returning in the sky. I worked basically non-stop on the annual report and a cosmology booklet, typesetting equations. I was happy the weekend came since that meant it was time for the Viking Winter Banquet. Most years we go to Oerlinghausen in Germany for the banquet but this year it was a home match: the Archeon in Alphen aan de Rijn.
The banquet was organised by Martin and Rona and was a great success. The food was excellent and so was the company. I went there with Marion and Danny in Janneke's car. Janneke couldn't make it to the banquet as she had other commitments that weekend.
The weather (which had been lousy the last week: rain, rain and more rain) had picked up considerably. The sun was shining all weekend and the temperature was well above freezing. The old houses of mediaeval 's-Gravendam looked fresh in the sunshine.
More hours of daylight also mean that I now leave the house in the dark, but slowly walk towards the sunrise in the morning. By the time I get to Muiderpoort the streetlights are switched off and by the time I walk into the gate at work the sun is up.
Two years ago the HiSPARC cosmology experiment wanted to change their website from the one I had made to one driven by a content management system (CMS). They would do all the work themselves. Now, two years later, the CMS still doesn't work properly; they can't integrate the data acquisition and analysis into the CMS and the database interfaces don't work. Today they asked me to 'please take over again and make it work.' I told them I'd think about it and would discuss it with management since I don't know what other work they've got lined up for me. I do like to work on HiSPARC, though.
When I made my escape at 16:00 the sun was still shining. I walked along the Amstel to Hartog's bakery where I hadn't been in a few weeks due to the weather. I did some more food shopping on the way home and decided that dinner would be tiny today. I had eaten too much at the banquet, so today I only had a Soato soup (spicy chicken and bean sprouts) with a little rice from the Surinamese take-away down the road. With two mandarins and a pear it made enough for a healthy dinner.
My weight has been steady over the last three weeks. I'm bouncing between 95 and 97 kilos. According to my dietician this is normal and could last up to two months. I think it is caused by not enough exercise in winter time and eating more than normal to keep my body stoked in the cold. I have to do more cycling on the exercise bike, I think.