During this week, I was in Basel to participate in the 30th meeting of the European Crystallographic Association (ECM) - the first time for me to participate in this conference. There were way more people than I had expected - I heard mentioned around 920 participants - and the whole thing was super inspiring.
I had actually tried getting a talk about my almost-ready to publish work on staging in LSCO, but I only got to present a poster. I did, however, get to catch up with a few people, as well as meet some of the people that I met at the Aperiodic Crystals school back a few weeks ago in Antwerp.
Monday evening there was a Young Crystallographers Mixer at the Bar Rouge in the second-highest building in Basel. The view was amazing, the drinks were great, and the music was loud. Quite a fun experience, although I'm not sure whether it worked well for networking or not..
Tuesday evening I got to visit the new Dectris headquarters in Baden-Daettwil, with a really interesting tour, as well as some awesome barbecue to top it off afterwards. It was really cool to see where they make the Pilatus detectors that I've seen so many times, as well as hear about all of the newer products they have been developing, and the history of the company.
The venue itself was really great, and there was a professional team of conference arrangers that took care of the practicals - everything ran so smoothly! We also had some pretty long lunch breaks, so there was good opportunity to get around Basel a bit. I might actually go to Basel again on a vacation some day, it was a great city - and the public transport was very efficient.
Finally, the conference dinner on Wednesday evening was held in the Zoo in Basel, in one of the big restaurant halls. Before the actual dinner (which was awesome, by the way), we were divided into groups and sent on tours around the Zoo. I got on the tour in their little aquarium, where one of the biologists showed us around in the back, where they breed corals, seahorses, and jellyfish. It was super interesting, and way too short. I could have stayed there for hours and hours.