Friday, 9 January 2009

the wake

This morning it was still dark when I got to work. I didn't sleep too well, but a cup of Abdul's asphalt coffee cured that quickly.

I worked on a few articles for the annual report. Monday morning is our next review meeting and I wanted to have as much ready as possible.

When I left work I took the bus to Amstel Station and walked home from there along the Ringvaart, which is now completely frozen. There were people on the ice teaching their kids to skate in the traditional way: by holding on to a chair.

traditional lessons

After dinner I went out again; I had to go to the wake of a colleague of mine, Jef Colle, who had died last Sunday. Jef was a physics teacher at the Amsterdams Lyceum and worked part-time at Nikhef on the HiSPARC experiment. When that experiment was starting up I worked with Jef on putting the web site together. Jef was a very enthusiastic teacher and well loved by his pupils. Quite a few of those are now studying physics or working at Nikhef, due to his influence.

The wake was in the auditorium of the Amsterdams Lyceum. I guess there were about 200 people there, both pupils and colleagues. I met a few people I hadn't seen in a long time. Jef was a man with a love for living well, so his wish was for a wake where people would gather for a drink and some finger food. As a result it was more like a party than a sad occasion; a good way to say good bye.