It’s hard to believe that five months ago I was living in Tala, working as a VSO volunteer. Life was good then, simple — I was living in a rural area of Kenya, hakuna matata (no problems). I didn’t particularly enjoy teaching, but I loved my colleagues and the pole pole (slow) life was easy to get used to. Teaching was a great experience, and sure it was challenging, but I just didn’t enjoy it. I want to be the guy hacking the computers, not the guy writing about hacking computers on a blackboard!
Life at ILRI has been great since I started in August, 2009. I wear khakis and a collared shirt once or twice a week, and jeans and a t-shirt the other days. I’ve worn a hat before and nobody seemed to mind, but I promise I won’t make a habit of it. Scientists at ILRI are all brilliant, and I’m learning new things about molecular biology and bioinformatics every day. I’ve always had a hobby interest in science, and it’s fun to be surrounded around “real” scientists.
Being around scientists all the time means I’ve realized I need to up my game. There is so much to learn, and every little bit of biology I pick up helps me work better with the scientists. The thought of going back to school is daunting, but the thought of being a part of something, like finding a vaccine or cracking some genetic code, is exciting (even if I was only the guy who set up the software). I’ve been given a one-year contract, so we’ll see what happens…
But first, before we crack Theileria parva, I gotta see if I can shake this cold I’ve been fighting for a few weeks. Goodnight!