Jan Monschke

Weeknotes 9/2021

#settling in · #covid vaccination · #new role · #books
May 16, 2021


Volkspark Friedrichshain

Wahoo, I’m back after a long break! As mentioned in the last update, I moved apartments. Apart from a couple lightbulbs, the new apartment was completely empty so it kept us pretty busy over the last two months. Let me tell you, planning and building a kitchen is a fun adventure on its own, let alone during a global pandemic 🙃. But now the kitchen is done, the rest of the flat is progressing nicely and it starts to feel like our new home already. Its proximity to one of my favorite parks in Berlin made it very easy to feel at home to be honest :)

The new flat is located really close to one of the Berlin vaccination centers. It gives us a first-row seat for observing the progress of the German vaccination campaign. We noticed that people that come to get their jab are getting younger and younger. It’s reassuring to see this progress and I hope we will see better days in the not so distant future!

Speaking of vaccination: I got my first shot last week (AZ) 💉. As expected, it did knock me out for a day. It felt like a flu and it was gone as quickly as it came. I was surprised to find out that there is an app to track side effects of the vaccination. Germany usually is not known for being on the digital forefront for these services, so I was left somewhat impressed 🤓.


Over the last two months I transitioned into a different team and into a slightly different role. I had never met most of the team in person and a big chunk of it has joined remotely within the last year. It almost feels to me like joining a new company and also joining remotely. The team has been super welcoming and it’s been great to learn about a lot about a part of the company that I had not worked much in before.

Side projects

I have not had time to work on any of my side projects in the last months and it felt great to not work on a computer after work. I think I had a good balance before but I might cut down on side project time a bit more in the future.

Somewhere might be finished soon anyways. The university has prolonged the deadline and the project is pretty much done now. As always, those last 20% take much longer than expected 😅


I finished Armada a couple weeks ago and it was very underwhelming to be quite frank. Ernest Cline’s endless pop culture references made sense in Ready Player One but they felt completely out of place in Armada. The story had lots of potential, yet felt rather flat in the end. Much to the reason of those references and too many tropes.

After Armada I started An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by YouTuber Hank Green and it took me by surprise. It’s a light SciFi-ish story that feels very current. One of the main themes is the influence of social media and platforms like YouTube on society and it reminded me a lot of the state of those mediums during the Trump presidency.

I’m currently reading the sequel A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor which has a stronger SciFi feel to it and is written in a very different style (several POV instead of a single one). I have the feeling I will like this one even more than the first one in the series 🤩

Song of the week

Let me close this post off with a groovy, poppy, modern disco tune by the Hamburg-based group Pool: