A kind of weird day, as well as very long. I went the post-office on campus, worked out, had a lunch date, met a student, marked some assignments, went home for a nap and dinner, returned to campus to tutor a student and teach a two-hour class. Also, I chatted with people I do not usually see since I am not usually there at those hours on Wednesdays. The afternoon class was canceled because I had finished the teaching units and wanted to give the students time to work on their midterm exam preparations on their own time.
I wanted to send the care package to my sister-in-law this week, and I had concluded the shopping yesterday so that I was ready to do it. I probably spent around eighty-five bucks on the goods, which are just a lot of useful household supplies and a very fine bath mat with an assortment of hand towels. It will be her birthday in a little under a month, and the box should arrive in two weeks. The shipping charges and tariffs were steep, as it was a large box with a lot of newly purchased items, even though the box only weighed some 3200 grams. I under-estimated the value of the mat, and other stuff, so as to cheat on tariffs, but the bill came to some fifty-five dollars. Not worth it except that they will enjoy opening the box and examining all the treasures.
I did a full workout, with changes. I tried a different treadmill running program, one at a faster pace. It was good, but I thought I should skip the skipping and see how my body handled it later. I went a bit easier on the crunches and rowing, too.
Y wanted me to meet her at the outdoor noodle place. We didn’t have noodles because of a clever manipulation by the waitress. We ended up with a kimchi pork with sam (leaf wraps) after a plate of seafood pajeon (onion pancake). It was too much food and we are not keen on pork. Anyway, we had a nice time.
Y talked about her family dinnertime experiences and how negative the dinner table interaction was. I can relate. Family dynamics can reveal themselves well at meal times. She mentioned how controlling her father was about what and how she ate, and how there was a lot of criticism. The subject came up because I experienced her critiquing some of my actions at the lunch table. The meal was sloppy, and we were at a rickety table outdoors, and I had on a scarf that kept getting in the way. I had no damage, though, but she was nitpicking. When I pointed it out, she told her story about family dinners. I shared some anecdotal info of the same topic and nature.
A student dropped by later to catch up with some missed worked and gather information on the midterm exam. After we wrapped up the business, he stayed to chat with me and he raised the subject of the dramatic film we had seen last week. We discussed the film and its meaning. I told him I thought it was about how one can be trapped by the family and community history, and community prejudices and dynamics, so that they cannot make real choices. I think that is how the boy character in the movie ended up a criminal by his early teens. I also explained what I know about the context of Newfoundland, which was the setting of the story.
I kept running into people. People seemed attracted to me or drawn to my work area a lot today. For one thing, after lunch, several longtime colleague-friends somehow converged outside my office for a few minutes. It was sweet unexpected exchange. Another such incident happened this morning on the way to campus. Carrying three bags with gym gear and the gifts, I was waiting for the community bus when a taxi stopped and the passengers hailed me. It was two “house” mates from my building. They gave me a lift.
Another weird situation with people happened at my office. After talking to the three colleagues whom I had encountered unexpectedly, I wanted to enter my office. From outside the transparent glass door, I caught a glimpse of a black silhouette inside the room. Then I remembered that my office mate, L, had told me that her husband would be around waiting for her today and realized it was him. He being a technical oriented guy, as he would explain later, he had been playing around with the security system and locked himself in, so that I had to unlock the door to enter. Just I was unlocking it using the fingerprint reader, he must have done something else that affected the lock, because we ended up getting locked inside. Then someone came by, and at that moment, the office phone rang so I turned to answer it. It was the guy outside our door. Apparently, he called security and got them to release the door lock for us. It turns out that the hubby is into home renovations and he launched into a discussion about the pros and cons of owning and caring for a house. He and L have ditched the notion of every owning a house again. They only have one daughter, so I guess they do not need the space. That is good for him, considering he is the “housewife” of the family.
And so on and so on. I went home and immediately felt so sleepy when I got home that I crashed and slept for about 40 minutes. Then I put together a pasta sauce and ate spaghetti before it was time to return to campus. A student was supposed to meet me but that was one person who did not show up today.