Here we are, it's been a year since I started the ALLODD journey… and what a year!
In January 2022 I settled down in Germany, which administratively was not so smooth. After a few days, I officially started in the lab at the biggest site and also headquarters of Merck. It is like a small town (we are more than 12´000 people working there). Despite being the only non-German speaker in the lab, any single person speaks English, which made my first months a lot easier that I would expect by being somewhere you don’t speak the language. Actually, I learned German at school a few years ago and let me say it is not like riding a bike you will forget if you do not practice! I hope, by the end of the project, to be able to speak fluently in German. This is also why I applied to learn more scientifically and personally.
As the first weeks and months go by, I was learning more about the different machines in the lab and their corresponding assays, as well as going deeper in the literature.
September was the opportunity to go to Barcelona in Prof. Dr. Curutchet lab as my first secondment. Moving from Darmstadt to Barcelona was definitely a weather improvement. Even though the surroundings were not new for me, I discovered there a new scientific world: the computational world. From opening a terminal to running my first molecular dynamic simulation, it was a very broad journey. This was also my first experience working at the University, as I did all my internships in private companies. I enjoyed my stay in the group, I am very thankful for the time they devoted to me, to explain and help me or to discover new restaurants.
Now back in Germany, it´s time for me to be reunited with the lab experiments and my cells: Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Yes, those are the same cells used in bakery or brewery (I had to adapt to the German culture 😉).
Being part of an ITN also means business-travel, during this first year, we met in-person twice with the wonderful people of the ALLODD network. Vienna, Barcelona and soon Strasbourg and Budapest, we emphasized the words network and partnerships!
The best is yet to come!