In Which I Beg For A Break, And Get It

November 30, 2014

The next day I woke up around midday, exhausted from the last finish of the previous night’s movie. There was another rehearsal today, in prep for our upcoming high profile gig. Worked for a while in bed, had a delicious vegan lunch, and just took it fairly easy.

Monday the stress returned. Machine Learning was really interesting, focusing on real world machine learning, much of it ‘big data’. Algorithms was particularly intense and with the exam right around the corner, I was getting really nervous. In the evening was regular glee rehearsal (mainly Christmas music), dinner at Hillel and then choral society. choral society was starting to get far more enjoyable as we started singing the music at speed.

Tuesday was noticeably quieter as people started to leave for the thanksgiving break. I had one last class in the morning, physics, which was starting to wind down a little. I worked on my research project for a little. Didn’t make enough progress.

In the late afternoon I headed over to Luke’s for a pre-thanksgiving potluck dinner with the other first year PhDs. However, I had to leave early due to the 8PM Glee Rehearsal.

Glee rehearsal was sadly quiet, with many people having left for the break. Nord our conductor didn’t take it too poorly however, and we were soon singing many of our favourite holiday songs and perhaps dancing around a little too.

Finally Wednesday arrived. No classes, just work, lunch plans and a winter storm. Unfortunately due to the winter storm, my lunch plans that were already rescheduled to then took another hit and were moved further to the last week of semester. This provided me with the opportunity to lounge lazily in bed and work more from there. Even Nadia admitted that it was a pretty lousy day to be getting up.

I had a  guiet bite my myself, packed my bags, and headed to Rodin to meet Ariella in order to head to her place for Thanksgiving break.

Tuesday/Wednesday – Day 152/153

December 28, 2012

Finally back in a low stress environment with the girls, Sophie and Tzippy (my little cousins) and, though I don’t celebrate it, this made the perfect Christmas. After waking up at 9AM and spending a little time mucking about with them, we headed off to the Museum of Jewish Heritage near Battery Park.

The museum was quite enjoyable, though we hung around a while longer than was strictly necessary to cater to the girls wishes. After that we went home and baked cookies together (from premade cookie dough this time, not as much fun!) and read stories before dinner and bed.

The next day was dreary outside, with ice, sleet, rain and snow pouring down onto the frozen New York Streets. Thus, I spent much of the day inside with the girls, playing the usual games and taking a little time to myself to read and nap.

In the evening I decided to brave the inclement weather in order to catch up with an old friend from Melbourne working in the city, one Elyse Borghi. Over a vegan kosher dinner we discussed America, politics, feminism and college life and as always she was most enlightening.From there we tried walking in the rain to one of many pop up speakeasys that are experiencing a revival, but unfortunately they were full up, making us somewhat fed up of being soaked and chilled to the bone. Thus an early night for both of us, we made haste to get to the subway and home.

Hannukah – The Story

December 6, 2012

I found this article today that I thought gave a clear and lucid account of the history behind the channukah story. It’s something that many people overlook and especially for those of you out there less familiar with Judaism, it’s definitely a fascinating read.

The lesson of Hanukkah is that even the struggles that saved a people are dappled with tragic irony, complexity and unattractive choices.

Reflecting on the meaning behind the festival brings a rather different set of issues to light than when examining Christmas and its origins. At least from my perspective a much more down to earth, gritty and almost painful reflection of sacrifices we make.

© 2012-2024 Shaanan Cohney