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Hey everyone,

Hope you’ve all been doing well. Last we spoke, the government shut down. I spent my time off reading and going to the gym, then I went back home to Michigan, and returned to the NIH in time for the government to re-open (took them long enough). I’ve been spending the last month getting back on track with research, getting ready for abstract submissions, and hanging out in Bethesda and DC.

I can’t believe how nice this year off has been. I have been able to read, make my own meals, listen to the new Drake album (two thumbs up), and relax. Not to mention I’m learning a lot in terms of research and the field of ophthalmology. It’s been a great experience to learn from the top researchers and especially to work with one. It has helped me with my efforts to combine my recently attained clinical knowledge with my previous career and research interests.

Enough chit chat! Let’s look at pics:

View of Capitol Hill on the way to enjoying the first day of the government shutdown

View of Janelia Farms, HHMI's research campus, at which I attended an HHMI conference. This building is stunning

Went home just in time for Momma's cooking for Eid!

In Detroit for my great friend Manal's engagement (she's in the blue!)

View of the stage at Busboys and Poets, a DC gem, where I attended an Open Mic Night for slam poetry

Back to my roots- Watched Palestinian singer and Arab Idol winner Mohammed Assaf perform in DC!

NIght pic from my balcony on a warmer night in Bethesda

Stalker photo!- No biggie, just NIH Director Francis Collins playing piano in the atrium of the NIH Clinical Center

So that about sums up my time here so far- it’s been such a great time! I will talk to you all soon (with pics of Momma’s food from Thanksgiving of course).

Take care,