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A new journey

Updated: May 13, 2021

I always wanted to live by the ocean. Sure that alone would not make me move country, but when the right opportunity is opening up, I welcome it with open arms.

Finalising my PhD I started looking for a new opportunity. I was glad to learn that I got a postdoctoral position at Delft Technical University. Again to the flatlands, again to a Dutch speaking country. Now it is time to learn Dutch for sure! Speaking German and English I anyway do not have much excuses not to learn Dutch.

It was appeasing to know that I have a position even before finishing my PhD. Even more so in these times. Moving to another country in these times is tough something that made me a bit worried. Moving country is already quite a hassle, but with the current restrictions and regulations I was expecting even more struggle.

I have now already a couple of months working for TU Delft under my belt and I have moved already. Let me tell you that not everything was without trouble. But I suppose that makes life exciting. I also suppose my complaints are on a high level. My move is not yet complete as the housing market in the area is insane. Though, I hope to find something decent soon. There is still much I have to organise, but bit by bit all is getting done.

While there is the obvious struggle related to moving I do greatly enjoy living close to the ocean. The beach up here is phenomenal and I love to walk along the beach listening to sound of the ocean. Right away the ocean called me and so I started with ice bathing, which I find fascinating. The cold water instantaneously brings you back in the moment. No thoughts, just deep breaths. There is also a lovely nature park close to the ocean where I love to go for a run. I also slowly try to get back into yoga. I guess I have to write a post just about my recovery at some point. For now I actually never know, if I may have to stop again.

Regarding my plans to learn Dutch I made the step to attend an online course. First, I wanted to only work autodidactic, but I figured that this is not enough. I was even placed in a higher level course than expected. Though, this is due to me speaking English and German. So certain things in Dutch come natural to me. Thus, I have a feeling for the language, but I do not really know it. I hope I can change that at least a bit. I have a good teacher, so at least for the time I attend the course I am positive about my progress.

I will write more about my work in the future. Though, to give a sneak peak about what I do, I proved a couple of lines here. At TU Delft I am part of the Energy Transition Lab. As the name tells the focus is on transiting towards a more sustainable energy system. My work is focusing on the human and societal part as I investigate the role of behaviour int he energy transition. I have to say that I find my work quite exciting. I can build on my past experience and expertise and enrich it with new perspectives. Working at a technical university does already enrich my work. I am used to working interdisciplinary, but I have not worked in an engineering environment to that extent before. The closer team is also interdisciplinary from my supervisor being a social psychologist to other lab members focusing on ethics, modelling or citizen participation. Thus, this is an enriching experience.

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