Everything is awesome

Sometimes you have one of these rare days where EVERYTHING seems to go well. The day feels awesome, you feel awesome, life feels awesome. Everything is awesome. Yesterday, for me, was such a day.

Obviously, as I wrote yesterday, I missed my covid shot (I convinced myself that this can happen if the opportunity is so short-notice, that it is three hours beforehand). However, I also immediately got the message that I had an alternative slot next week. I don’t let that missed opportunity ruin my awesome day. Being vaccinated next week is still awesome.

As a good number two, I count a long-format conversation with my boss. Due to busy schedules on both sides we rarely have time to talk to each other for longer than ten minutes. I knew this when I applied. He was looking for an independent person, I sought for a boss that would not be breathing down my neck all the time. In that sense, we have a very good synergy. However, there are some things that I don’t know shit about, and he is very experienced at. One such thing is writing grant proposals. I have been walking around with this idea in my head for quite some time (well several ideas really, but for now I’ll try one proposal first). I indicated a while ago that I would appreciate it if he would be available more for such occasions. I guess all I had to do was ask? He made time for me in no time. Yesterday, he introduced me to the major funding options, explained the most suitable ones, and more importantly, we talked a bit about content and my ideas, and it seems that we are having a very similar vision on my first real grant proposal. I really appreciated having two hours to soak up knowledge like that, whereas all our other contact usually feels hurried and rushed. Half a day over, still awesome. We’re on the right track.

Halfway through the day, the delivery guy rang the doorbell, and handed over a sturdy padded envelope from the UK. I had ordered some prints by a wonderful artist named Carim Nahaboo, who makes absolutely stunning entomological artwork. It had been posted two weeks ago or so, and I was getting worried that the border control liked the content so much that they kept it. Some beautiful Coleoptera are now ready to be framed and put on a wall in my home office somewhere.

One of the prints I ordered – Artwork by Carim Nahaboo. This picture does not do it justice, but you get why I find this awesome!

A bit later, the doorbell rang again. I wasn’t expect anything else? A big box with a card taped to its side. No clue. I open the package to find a box filled with balloons, lots of Dutch peanut butter, and some other Dutch stuff that I miss. The card read that they missed having us around and that they hoped to be able to visit soon, and until then, we would have to do with the content of the box. It was sent to me by a good friend from the Netherlands, that I unfortunately don’t see very often (the guy that chases beavers too). It made me feel like I’m not a good enough friend myself. What a sweet gesture. I’m blessed to have friends like that!

The awesome box! Rafa insisted on taking the balloons to pick up ‘the cherry on the pie’. We went in style!

Around the same time Heike receives a call and was on the phone for what seemed like an hour. Who’s she having long conversations with at this time? That usually only happens in the evenings… It turns out it was a kindergarten we had applied for on-campus (I live about five minutes away from campus). Even though we have the sweetest daycare mother, she lives twenty minutes away, which makes the procedure of bringing and collecting Rafa a one and a half hour trip per day. I don’t like driving (or biking) that much, so closer to home is better. It is also the kindergarten that we had initially applied for, but did not get the first time. Even though we anyway don’t get childcare in the current situation, it is good to have something good to look out for.

Then the cherry on the pie. We had been thinking and talking for many years about a new mode of transportation. Our requirements were very specific, from the brand and model, to the engine. The one that we wanted is not easy to find. Germany is big enough to have to drive for 700 km to find the specific thing you want, and that seemed to often be the case for this specific vehicle. Even if you want to buy it new – we found out – there is often a one-year waiting list. We had been looking around for one for months, and when we just arrived in Germany, we even went to a dealer to get informed about the possibilities for getting a new one. We had almost forgotten about it, and given up even, mostly because of the pandemic. So when we saw exactly the vehicle we needed online last week, located only 10 km away, the decision was quick and easy. Yesterday we picked up our new ride and home-away-from-home; a Ford Transit Custom ‘Nugget’. We love camping and travel a lot, but having one young kid, let alone two, does not make it easier to take a tent and go wherever you please. Having a modest home on wheels, in which I can stand up straight, and kids can sleep while we enjoy a good glass of wine and the good life, will help us with that.

Measuring 1.94 cm, a car where I can stand up in is rare. So now we are the proud owners of this thing! We’re not allowed to go anywhere with this curfew in place, but at least we’ll be prepared for later times.

So for now, everything is awesome!

Published by Robin Heinen

Father of two | Husband | Entomologist and Ecologist | Postdoctoral Researcher @ TUM | Traveler | Coffee Addict

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