July 11, 2009

Mio terrazzo

The concept of a penthouse terrace sounds very esoteric for some, but many houses here have rooftop terraces that are shared by the inhabitants of the place. I have a small (ca. 15 sqm) space that I can exclusively use, for relaxing and doing such mundane things as drying laundry.
Yesterday, I had a party di arrividerci with coworkers from the Institute. Pasta, vino, amici, la luna - tutto bene!

In the evening I often sit here, eating dinner, reading and watching the ships coming in.

Till reading his Harry Potter book.

Silke beim Stricken mit Aperitivo.

June 23, 2009

Milano trips

I have been to Milano twice in the last month. In the middle May I visited some friends over a weekend and last week I participated in a workshop at the Polytechnical University in Milan. Milan weather was certainly hotter than in Genova. I appreciate the sea breeze on my terazzo.


At the piazza del duomo, the main square in downtown Milano. In the background is the cathedral (il duomo).


I visited my good friends Gabriel and Susan in Milano. Here you see Gabriel with the very curious looking "family addition". The way she looks into the world, she will become a scientist just like her dad.

June 7, 2009

The end is in sight

Just another seven weeks, before I depart. Tempus fugit! I have been working long hours this past week to finish another manuscript for publication. Freely following the maxime: "Publish, but perish anyway!"

If you are interested in what I have published so far in 2009 go to: hsc.umn.edu

My Italian is slowly getting better. I take an advanced conversation course through the Institute twice a week in the evening. It is clearly too advanced for me, but I hang in there. Unfortunately, there is no intermediate course offered. I still make many mistakes during conversations, but at least I manage to get my groceries and most important my aperitivo, the early evening drink in a local bars :-).

Frecce tricolori

On Friday late afternoon, the famous squad "frecce tricolori" (the arrows with the three colors) appeared over Genova. They are hugely popular here and gave an 30 minute air show over the harbour. I filmed some scenes from the roof of my apartment building.


There is a little clip to watch.

A much more detailed and cooler clip can been seen on "youtube".
Link to Youtube Clip

May 10, 2009

Trip to France

Last week I flew to Paris to give a presentation at the College de France, which is an old premier research institution right next to the Sorbonne, the famous and first university of Paris.

The front entrance of the College de France. It was founded in 1530.

The Sorbonne University is the directly adjacent to the College.

This is my new car to get me around. A bit futuristic but it drives.

At the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia

Silke and Till visiting me at the IIT during spring break.

The "braccio di ferro" (the iron arm). With this robot manipulandum we perform our current experiments. The robot can create virtual force fields, as if you are touching an object that you cannot see. It allows us to examine haptic sensitivity. That is, how fine can humans sense differences in the shape of objects that they feel with their hands but do not see. Two weeks ago we began to examine the first patients with Parkinson's disease.

Lorenzo and Valentina - the god and goddess of the braccio di ferro.

March 27, 2009

Hiking along the Coast

We did a beautiful hike along the Ligurian coast today. The weather was mixed, but the vistas were spectacular.

Till took this photograph of us.

The trail along the coast was very steep at times and you
needed to hold on chains to traverse some tight spots .
The mountains in the back rise over 400 meters from sea level.

The Family Has Arrived

Silke and Till arrived safely in Genova on the 19 March. Silke likes the food and wine. Till also likes the food, but is somewhat bored because he has no buddies here to play football (soccer).

Mother and son at the sea during their first weekend in Italy. The picture shows them at the promenade in Camogli, a small harbour city near Genova.

Going to a restaurant in the old part of town on Saturday night.

March 15, 2009

Out of Town Board Meeting

Michael, a fellow board member from the Twin Cities German Immersion School visited me last weekend. He was on a business trip in Milan. He took the train to Genova (~ 2 hour ride) and I showed him Genova by walking around the city and porto antico (the old harbour).



This is Via Garibaldi, where the Genovese people of rather affluent means built their city palaces in the 16-18th century. This is Palazzo Rosso (the red palace). We had a "caffe macchiato" in the little bar where you see tables outside.

March 8, 2009

Trip to Camogli

On my first weekend in Genova I took a trip with a local train to a small harbour village called Camogli. It is about a 30 minute train ride south of Genova. Very picturesque as you can see.



March 3, 2009

A View with a Room

View from my bedroom at dawn and dusk.



A casa!

Here a few pictures from my apartment.

View from my living room window. The mountains in the back still have snow.

View from the rooftop to the back of my house

Continue reading "A casa!" »