Yesterday morning Roommate had just finished her final. She came down to my lab and asked me do you want to go to the Independent Grocery Store (IGS) this afternoon. (IGS has a wonderful selection of-- and great prices on-- wine. And organic coffee... yum.) I told her sure and that I'll be home around 6pm. An hour later, I get a phone call from Roommate saying that I can pick you up from the seminar after it's over (at 5pm) instead of you taking the bus. I thought that was an excellent idea.
I left the building after the seminar and saw Roommate waiting outside. But, before we drove off, we saw our friend, and fellow grad student and neighbor, Kim. We rolled down the window and yelled out to her. She came over and asked for a ride home. We told her sure, but we're stopping by IGS to get some wine. She got into the car. On our way to IGS we discovered that we had coupons to Local Pizza Joint. So, we added as stop there. We asked Kim do you want to join us for some pizza and wine. She told us yes, but I have to walk the dog first. Then, Roommate called Lindsey and I called Best Friend to invite them over. And our gathering grew.
So, by the time 7pm rolled around, we were all gathered around the dining room table eating pizza and drinking wine and talking about the people we know, don't know, the world at large, science, non-science, and everything in between. Occasionally one of us would start “dorking out” about our particular branch of science and that would require explanation to the non-science people at the table and some creative analogies (such as, fate mapping is sort of like following a piece of chocolate to its final form... ok, it's like a grape to wine... and now I drink the wine...). One thing that did surprise me was that even in our off hours, we still discussed our science. Maybe, as a group, we're a bit more obsessive than we'd like to think. Or more dedicated at least.
The evening stretched until about 11pm, when Roommate and I said Here's your hat. What's your hurry? And locked the door behind them. It was a much better way to spend the evening than reading papers and moping over missing Dr. Man.