Tag Archives: boxes

Little eco-gestures

It has been super long time since I’ve written a post in my blog. It has been a crazy summer for me: hen-do party in Madrid (yes, scientists also party hard J), University friend’s wedding in Puerto Real (where I was first made!), preparation for cruise (not only normal packing preparation but also getting catamaran and buoy ready for the first ever real deployment), visitors at home for a week, cruise in the Baltic Sea for four weeks, holidays in Ibiza for ten days, SOLAS conference in Kiel for a week (where I co-chaired my first discussion session). I can write a post for each of this points (I will definitely do for the Baltic Sea cruise) but today I want to tell you about something different.

Summer holidays in Ibiza

Summer holidays in Ibiza

Patri hen do in Madrid :)

Patri hen do in Madrid 🙂

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Beautiful wedding in Puerto Real

Poster presentation in SOLAS conference in Kiel

Poster presentation in SOLAS conference in Kiel

Mud walk :)

Mud walk 🙂

By now all the readers of this post know I work with CO2 in the ocean. During more than 11 years I have been actively working on this, I am often asked the question/comment along these lines; “you study CO2 but you cruise the Polar oceans” or “a lot of CO2 problem but you go to a conference in Hawaii”. Although cruises are still necessary to understand the complexity of our ocean, the oceanography community is investing a lot more effort in the “environmental friendly” platform like Argo buoys, fixed platforms with automatic sensors, gliders… Also it is also necessary to meet with your fellows in conference for networking, plan future research… However, more and more video-calls and conferences are used to discuss plans and papers.

But today’s post is about the personal little actions one can do to contribute less to the carbon budget. Of course you don’t need to be a carbon expert to do that but for me it makes more sense to be as consistent as possible with my life. I have a car and a bike and I try to cycle four days per week to work (believe me it is not always easy in North-Germany for a Mediterranean island girl). The fifth day I use the car because I go from work directly to a German course with my husband. We don’t use plastic bags for shopping and we avoid buying products with lots of packing (my friends, bananas have the most clever natural way of packing themselves, they don’t need an extra packing!). I do not use disposal tampons or slips but silicone cup and clothes washable slips (also these super white products are not really healthy). I always used alum deodorant, clothes tables napkins..

I don’t buy a lot of clothes, with travelling I learn we really don’t need that much to live comfortably. I admit I’m a fan of the charity shop (my angry aunties say I wear death’s clothes), where you give a second chance to a lot of things that otherwise would be waste. I had strange conversation with the cell phone customer service department who tried to reward me with a new cellphone because I’ve been such a loyal and good costumer: “No, I don’t want a new phone, mine is working fine” and the lady repeated again and again with surprise “but madam, it is free, you don’t even need to pay the delivery service”.

Sure I miss a lot of other little gesture one might do to reduce the impact of CO2 footprint. What are yours?



Those of us who have no permanent job in science, when our contract is close to an end (that means more or less a year) it is time to start applying for a new job.

Normally, how it works is as follows: You see an advertisement of a position on offer. Normally they ask for your curriculum vitae, a cover letter, the list of publications and the name of referees. You put them all together (at first, this is a lot of work, but then it is only a matter of adapting them according to the job description), you send the completed application and wait.

Suddenly you receive an email: you don’t need to read it all, you fast scan to find either “unfortunately” or “we’re happy to…” If “unfortunately” appears, I just put a “X” in front of the folder name where I save the rejection documents. If the happiness appears in the response email, I find the folder to remind myself what the job was about; what did I put in my application? (and sometimes, google-map where in the World is this city?) You should by now know that I love maps!! Then I prepare for the interview. Interviews can be in person, by phone or videoconference. This week I had one job interview for a job in Wilhelmshaven (it is your time to google it now, hahahaha).

One advantage of having being in a distance-relationship for a while is that you spend so much time talking in front of the computer that you end up being as natural as in real life (as my mum said: “what a hell are you doing laughing in front of this machine”). The science interviews have standard interview questions: what are your strengths; where do you see yourself in five years… And science questions: what is the most important result in your last publication (yeah! At least one person has read it!!). They finish with the typical: “we will get back to you”

And they come back to me, and offer the job!!

Then starts a storm in my brain, first check: how are flights from the new job to home in Ibiza? I again remember my mum, when I was deciding where to do my PhD, saying “you go where you want but try to keep less than two flights and less than half day of travel” Check one, not too bad, as travel is always better summer than winter. Check two, how is housing there? Check three, how much will I earn? Check four, when should I start? It never coincides with the end our your actual contract. Check five; check six… Oh my gosh!!! Moving again, boxes and more boxes (fortunately, there has not being too long since we last moved and our studio is too small to accumulate a lot of things).

I have yet to decide, I need to think, ask my pillow, ask my family, go to swim, go to run… we’ll see . . .