Extracting Root Lesion Nematodes

June 23

For the past week Gul Abla hasn’t felt well but has attributed the cough, congestion, and light fever to allergies. Today she came in feeling worse than ever and told us she would go to the doctor as soon as we got situated. It was so kind of her to come all the way to work just to get us set up!

Today Rola and I worked with the other members of the pathology lab to extract root lesion nematodes from soil samples. For the process we had a large petri dish under a plastic plate with large holes that was covered with a filter paper.

First we set up these petri dishes across the entire lab

Second we added a soil sample to each petri dish

Third we used scissors to cut the roots in the sample

Fourth we soaked the samples in water

The idea is that the water will drain into the large Petri dish and the root lesion nematodes will follow the water. In three to five days we should be able to discard the top part of the apparatus with the soil and just have the water containing the nematodes. It was quite a tedious project and even with five of us working on it, we barely finished before the end of the work day.

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I met to new girls at lab today, Toga and Elif. Both of them go to the local university. They studying biotechnology in relation to agriculture and got an internship at CIMMYT for the summer. Toga and Elif are really fun and curious about me. Through broken English, Turkish, and Google Translate we were able to get to know one another.

I came home, my fingers swollen with water. Looking through my fridge I realized that I have potatoes so I can make one of my favorite meals, bangaladumpa vepudu (a potato stir-fry) with rice. An hour later, this is what I came up with.

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I invited Joe to dinner and luckily we both enjoyed the meal. The more I settle in the better this trip is getting!

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