Well I've now spent a week in Palmy 5 days of which were spent “working” at Fonterra's research facility. In that time I'm come too a couple of conclusions, Fonterra would be a cool place to work full time at and there's not a lot to do in Palmy during the weekends if you don't know people.
Any way back to Fonterra. As suggested above working there is quite fun (at least this far) it's had some boring parts especially this week with all the confusion with all the summer students showing up and the national Microbiology conference being held in the town. Which meant my supervisor was for the last two days dashing off to that for most of the day. Still on the Thursday I did get to do some lab work total DNA extraction is quite fun (well as fun as work can be at least) not a very hard technique and one that I'd already done in Molecular genetics at University but still none the less interesting. Friday made up for that though with the supervisor in town for most of the day and the DNA extraction complete it was decided to wait till next week to do the analysis the result being I spent the day reading research papers, not the most fun thing to do as any of you Science students will know. Still it did mean that I've completed most of the background reading for the research.
Well I guess I should comment on the first couple of days. Monday was the big “First” day. After some difficulties with the bike I borrowed I managed to get to Fonterra at 9am were I met up with Chris (A guy from my Biochem classes) who's also doing work at Fonterra over the summer. Wandered into the building got fitted out with visitors passes by the Receptionist then waited for the HR person to arrive and take us to a conference room where the health and safety lady was explaining all the OSH stuff to all the students who had arrived sat through that then went down to the cafeteria for morning tea. After which the HR person went over various other things of importance gave us our staff passes (Cool little radio frequency things just hold the card somewhere near the sensors on the doors and they unlock for you!) then took us to our various supervisors. Then Lunch time at the Staff Cafeteria (foods real nice and quite cheap!) which was followed by a discussion with my supervisor (who's got several students) about the various projects were doing and how they kind of related to each other. Then afternoon tea at the staff Cafeteria. After that organised a few things got shown round the building introduced to people we would have to deal with, given some readings and done for the day. After which I headed up the road to the place I'm staying at ordered a pizza got my second cousins to drop off the rest of my luggage and went to bed.
Tuesday turn up to Fonterra 8:30 have a chat with the supervisor got told what was happening with pay and related things Morning tea, then went to a seminar by a visiting scientist (from Ireland) followed by a visit to stores for safety Glasses (cool somewhat stylish ones quite a wide range of choices) and a couple of lab coats. Seeing I wear glasses they also gave me the order form for a set of prescription safety glasses for me (~$300 worth paid for by them!). After which was lunch, did some reading in the library for a bit then had the the safety tour of the lab I'm working in, Afternoon tea more talking to the supervisor and done for the day.
Wednesday head in 8:30 another safety tour of another lab I might work in. Sub out some cultures Morning tea, Chat with supervisor do some reading, Lunch do something I can't remember then Afternoon tea and I finish for the day to head into town to order the prescription safety glasses from OPSM.
That's pretty much the week at work after work I've mainly been listening to music, doing some of the reading for work and playing the odd game on my laptop as I say not a lot to do in the evenings and weekends in Palmy.