Summer School San Sebastián 2014: where the beauty of nature and the beauty of physics come together


In the last two weeks of August 2014, a large number of Casimir pre-PhD and PhD students took part in the San Sebastián summer school. This how one of the participants experienced it:

"There it is: The Casimir Summer School that everyone has been dreaming about. What better place to do Science than a palace, on top of a hill in the beautiful Donostia, which opened her doors to us, a bunch of physicists, for two full weeks of sun, see and science. The program is mouthwatering, but first we get the opportunity to discover the city, a city nobody really knew before. The statue of Jesus watches over you, while laying on the beach, enjoying the weather and the magnificent view of the bay. Day one is a touristy day, with only the opening ceremony, which made everyone even more enthusiastic about getting started.

Day two: You wake up early, in the calm residence located near the Seminario Antiguo, full of energy. A little breakfast and a small walk down the hill and off you go! A handful of interesting lectures that really stand up to the title of the Summer school: Frontiers of Condensed Matter. The themes are diverse, from Topological Mechanics to High Tc Superconductivity through Black Holes and Quantum Transport. Experimental and theoretical physicists are intertwined, discussing their research, picking up new ideas and enlightening others with theirs. 
The harmony present is rare, the perfect balance between the beauty of Nature and the beauty of equations and experiments. During the day, a glimpse of what is still challenging us is taught on the blackboard by excellent professors. At night, some pinchos and calimochos are awaiting you in Old Town, after a quick dive into the sea. There you get to merge into the Spanish, or in this case, Basque way of living. Nice food, laughter, friendly people and a relaxed atmosphere to fully revive for the next day.
This adventure goes on for ten more days, perfectly coordinated, in which the atmosphere only got better and better. How can it go otherwise with such nice people in such a nice environment? A Summer school to remember, a fairy tale that motivates you even more to explore, learn and experiment."