Sunday, June 3, 2007

Wallet Wonderful-ness

So. I had an adventure just before leaving leaving Grenoble for family vacation...mostly accentuated by my stupidity -- but there you go ;). Here 'tis:

I found out at the beginning of the week that I 'might' have beamtime on the neutron instrument, D22, on Thursday, at 5 or 6 pm. This wasn't so hot, because Thursday was going to be my last day at work before leaving on the 8 am train on Friday with my brother to Paris, but eh, beggars can't be choosers when it comes to beamtime, so I said ok.
Thursday rolled around, I did in fact have beamtime, but we started about 6:30, and I knew we would be at work late, so I left all my stuff in the office. DATA :) pm rolls around, we get some pizza and are sitting near the office having it, when this random guy from our lab comes down (still at work!) and says he is leaving, do we need the spare office key or can he take it. The people I was having beamtime with say, oh no worries, we can let you (me) into the office for your stuff, so take it (instead of putting it back where its supposed to go...).

All right -- but this meant I was in a hurry when getting my stuff -- people were waiting on me, etc, -- so I managed to get my bag and leave something rather important in the desk drawer...that's right, my wallet. RATHER IMPORTANT FOR GOING ON A 2-WEEK VACATION AROUND FRANCE!! Doh!
However, I only realized this at 3:30 or so in the morning, when Trevor, my boss, dropped me off at home, with my bike, after the beamtime finished. I was finishing up some packing, realized I didn't have my wallet, and after cursing just about everyone and everything even remotely involved in the whole situation, resignedly got on my bike to go BACK to work, at 4 am, to get my wallet.

Unsurprisingly, there is no traffic at this ungodly hour, so I got there fairly quickly, managed to get through security onto the site, and got just about up onto my floor when I finally remembered this whole exchange earlier about the keys...and realized that there was no way I could get into the office! OH NO! I panicked -- and couldn't think of what to do. Finally, after waking one friend from lab up at this insane hour (sorry Estelle!!!) I realized that the guardians of the site have master keys. So, onto the bike again, out to the front gate, brain ceased to function. I think my request/question was the most garbled mix of french and english I have ever heard in my life! When I said 'CIBB' (the building), it came out like Cay-Eye-Bee-Bay, and I totally blanked on the word for wallet (rather important for this situation, I would say) and had to describe it as the thing that you put bank cards in...ugh, completely ridiculous!
Thankfully, they did manage to understand me, I got my wallet, got home with no incident, and even got to take a shower before getting to the train station for my train! Note to self: only forget wallet when NOT going on a long trip early the next day. Oh, and I learned something new: it starts getting light in the mornings at 4:45 in Grenoble...I was still up and outside!!!

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