13 October 2010

Conveyor Belt

It is Week 7 in the semester, and sometimes, this is just the time when one is trying to breathe, and yet cannot. There are so many things to do, and one finishes one thing, and there's another one waiting for attention.

It's Tuesday evening, and I am still here in my office, taking a little break from reading. Last weekend, I was writing a paper, and finally finished it Monday afternoon. That was great, since I had to turn it over to my co-author so that it can be commented on. In the meantime, I had to meet with my co-author to move along the other paper that we are writing.

I teach every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and I have a class of my own during Mondays and Wednesdays. Mondays from 10:00 to 1:00 usually is just a block of time that I don't get anything done, because I am either in class learning or teaching. This past Monday, I returned the homeworks to my students, and then discussed stuff. The discussion will continue.

For Tuesday, I usually have a meeting with my adviser for an hour, and then I have lab duty for two hours. However, that still held true today, except that my adviser meeting was moved to after my lab duty, and then I also had another meeting with another faculty member for another project in which I was involved with. So that was a productive meeting, and I need to write stuff for that, such as filler sentences for an experiment that we are about to conduct.

After my meeting with my adviser, things have been clear, and I bugged two other individuals outside of the university for input. I emailed someone in California for some technical information that I needed, and I got a reply. I also emailed someone in Massachusetts for experimental materials and so far I haven't gotten a reply. Hopefully I get a reply soon.

Tomorrow is a Wednesday, so I am teaching and learning again, and there is a talk in the afternoon that I need to go to. A speaker from out of town is coming, and he is giving a talk on something that I am interested in. After that, for thirty minutes, I have an appointment with this person to discuss my research agenda. Most likely, I won't get anything done tomorrow, since Mondays and Wednesdays usually are my busy days.

What is my Thursday like? Oh, I have a lab meeting in the afternoon. That's an hour and a half. After that, I need to go to a committee member's office hours, because I need some input from her, and I haven't gotten results yet, and I need to make things move. That's the only thing I have in my calendar for Thursday, so the key is to get to the office early and work as much as I can, to make use of the time. I am planning to spend some research time for my own dissertation, since there are papers that I need to read, and the things I have been working on this past week are projects that are not related to my dissertation work but for something else. I also need to pack some clothes for the weekend on Thursday night, since I will take a trip to Toronto for the weekend to visit a friend.

Friday will be teaching, I don't have the class I am taking on Friday, so the morning is a little free, but I still teach. My class ends at 1:00 PM, so I will just leave my stuff here in the office and go straight to Canada after that. By 6:00 PM, I will be in Toronto having dinner with a friend.

Somehow, from now until Thursday, I still have to find time for laundry. There's a load of laundry that needs some attention. And yesterday, I also cleaned my bathroom and did some ironing. I sprayed some solvent in my bathtub while I was ironing, and when I was done with my clothes, it was very easy to wipe it off and clean it. Very powerful stuff.

So yeah, things are busy, things are hectic, but things are good.

(Terraced Stones, from my Saqsayhuaman Series)


  1. Wow, don't you just love university life? You must love learning and teaching a lot Linguist.

  2. Toe,

    Toe! How have you been? I haven't seen you in a while. But yes, things are moving along here, I love research more than teaching, but I can't divorce the two. Long story short, I am enjoying my time here.

  3. Your schedule looks crazy! I felt like that like year in the middle of the semester and of course I was just a student (and working full-time). The minute I would finish something something else needed attention!

  4. Zhu,

    It is crazy. But I actually prefer this than simply bumming around.