ICVSS 2010: some trivia

If you think that summer schools are only about lectures and posters, you are certainly wrong. Well, I also did not expect that I would get drunk every night (it was not in Russia after all!). On the first night I convinced people to go to the beach for night swimming, but on the next day I realized that it was not a really good idea, because lectures started at 9. Eventually, we did not go to bed early for the rest of the week.

I would like to thank "Marsa Sicla" people (Fig. 1), you were the great company!

Fig. 1. The Marsa Sicla company. Left to right: Richard, Ramin,
Nicolas, Xi, Vijay, Clément, Aish, me. Sandra is behind the camera.

Actually, there was a reason why we had such a close-knit company. On the Fig. 2 you can see the map of the region where the school took place. The school was hosted by Baia Samuele hotel village (inside the blue frame on the map). The cheapest accommodation at Baia Samuele costed €100 per night, so some pragmatic people scared a different accommodation up. It was in a neighbouring hotel village, Marsa Sicla.

Fig. 2. ICVSS location map. View ICVSS_2010_MSvsBS in a larger map

In a map it looked pretty close, but in practice it turned out that there were a lot of fences (blue line)! Officially, we had to walk along the red route (~2.5 km, partly along a highway) through the official entrance. Moreover, we had to leave the village for lunch (since there were buffet), otherwise we would have been charged €30 per meal. To control it they wanted us to leave our documents at the control post (bottom blue tick on Fig. 2). Thus, we were supposed to walk 2.5 km four times a day. But we found a better solution.

Although the fence was equipped with a barbwire, we managed to find two shortcuts (green ticks). One of them led through ever-closed gate (Fig. 3), which were suitable for hopping over. So, we used the green path usually. It made the way two times shorter. Moreover, we did not have to leave Baia Samuele for lunch, since we weren't officially there. Sometimes we even had free lunch, that finally proved that the no free lunch theorem is wrong (joke by Ramin).

Fig. 3. Hopping over the fence.

Well, the lunch was really great. But this was not really a question of food, the main reason not to leave Baia Samuele was of course socialization, which used to be active during lunch (and also Internet access at the conference centre :). If we knew about such situation before booking the apartments, we would probably followed the official accommodation recommendations. However, we had a great company at Marsa Sicla too. But because of "unofficial night programme" I had to (almost) sleep during lectures. Most of guys was on their last year of PhD, so they considered the school as a vacation. But I really wanted to learn a lot of stuff. It was really difficult to perceive any information when you had not slept enough time. Surprisingly, I somehow managed to pass the final exam, but I feel I need to look through the lecture slides again, reading up some papers they refer to, otherwise the scientific part of the school will be useless for me.

Thus, I finish posting about ICVSS. To conclude, I want to recommend everyone to visit such summer schools, because they are the best way to enter into the community.

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2 Response to "ICVSS 2010: some trivia"

  1. Anonymous Says:
    9 September 2010 at 04:30

    Hey - came across this blog. Don't ask me how ! Vijay here. Had a terrific time there..cheap wine and swimming in the mediterranean sea. Good stuff

  2. Unknown says:
    11 September 2010 at 22:13

    Hi, Vijay!
    Indeed, it was great!

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