Particles to Parties

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Sarah's place

Flag of Switzerland  , Geneva,
Wednesday, June 20, 2012

We finally we made it to Switzerland. Now surely we could wear those 'cold clothes' we had been carrying since Singapore. You know, the polar fleece and the thick shirts.

Not a chance. It was flogging hot! I arrived in the station as a sweating mess, got sunburnt the next day and complained because the train out of town had no air conditioning! It better get cold somewhere!

Sarah met us at the station (which she had correctly described as a construction site with mostly boarded up facades ) and it was great to see her again. It was almost ten years ago that we had been on an intrepid trip to Jordan. I was very excited to see her again.

She had found us some accomodation. Actually she had given us her one bedroom flat and moved herself out to stay with friends. We felt bad about this, ...... But not bad enough to get a hotel room! Being an experienced traveller - in fact she is rated as an intrepid LEGEND - she highlighted the important points.........location of supermarket and early opening Boulanger, main shopping street and local 'red light' district. Ashley was very pleased that we got to walk home past the working girls and took a very keen interest in their unique attire. I just think some of them must have to work long hours to get the rent.

Ashley had arranged a tour at CERN - the most amazing research into particle physics and the very fabric of the universe using particle accelerators. We had a lovely nerdy time. It was great fun, but almost possible to express unless you have that interest. I'll try.

Ever wanted to know what the universe really is? Why do we or the stars even exist? Statistically the whole thing is improbable. There shouldn't be stars or galaxies, and without stars then there is no matter for people to exist. The universe is very old and we live in such a tiny instant in time and after this it will not be possible for life to exist? We look to the stars but are only seeing 4% of what the universe is made of. Why? Why do objects interact? Why do we have mass? Why can't I walk through walls? The answers to all of these questions depend on the research at CERN. This is pure fundamental science and it is the most exciting thing and the most exciting time (since perhaps the renaissance.)

Geneva had put on a three day music festival for us so that night we headed out with Sarah to see some stuff. We were of course drawn to the stage next to the world's longest bench. Yes, Geneva has the world's longest bench! Of course you can't get a shot without people sitting on it so it's more like the worlds biggest group of people having lunch, but, hey....I tried.

The festival was good.
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ruth on

ooh bundles of copper wire! Woo Hoo!

david on

ooh particle accelerator! reminds me of multiple pictures of trout

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