Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Heavy, Indeed…

Jennifer contemplates our proto-dresser.
JoeSeptember was kind of a crazy month. All summer long we'd been uncertain what was going to happen to us in the fall after I (hopefully) finished my Masters degree. Both of us were looking for jobs, both here and elsewhere, and I was madly writing and revising and coding. Then suddenly Jennifer had a job interview in Cambridge (note from Jennifer: details to follow), and with a week to go before my defense it looked as though we might be moving to the UK. Five days before D-day, I got a call from a professor about a PhD position I had applied for in the department here; I'd interviewed in June, and had pretty much thought that it was not going to happen, but apparently the committee had chosen the weekend before my defense as the time to make their final decision. At 5pm the night before my defense, I got a phone call offering me the position—we still had no idea about Jennifer's potential job in the UK.

Long story short: my defense went fine, Jennifer's job did not materialize, and today I became a PhD student. Whiplash, much? In Sweden, incidentally, being a doctoral student is considered a job; not a particularly well-paid one, but not bad, and it does include all the benefits that any other University employee would have. So the upshot is, instead of getting kicked out of the country at the end of the month, we're now staying for another five years—and let me tell you, signing paperwork this afternoon festooned with the date "October 1, 2015" gave me a bit of a shiver.

We celebrated, naturally, by going to IKEA. We've been living this whole time in a two-bedroom apartment, and the second room has never really been used for anything, mainly because our computer is also our tv, so we've had our desk in the living room. I know, how student bohemian can you get? Anyway, it was fine for a while, but as of six months ago it had officially become old. Now that we're planning on staying here until after Doc Brown arrives with Marty and Jennifer in tow (incidentally, do I get my hoverboard soon?), we decided it was time to turn the spare room into an official study, and have a big-person living room. We spent an entire Wednesday* in our local mega-IKEA, and by the weekend we had a bunch of boxes in our living room.

Jennifer didn't reveal until we got home that we had purchased the Benno tv-bänk partly because it was named after Benno of Uppsala, a monk in The Name of the Rose.
So we spent the whole weekend putting together furniture, and marveling at the fact that neither of us noticed while in the store that we were buying a soccer pitch as our new living room rug.

*Not just any Wednesday—it was classic meatball Wednesday! Seriously, a 16 SEK plate of meatballs and mashed potatoes is nothing to scoff at in Sweden.

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