Saturday, January 08, 2005

What was I saying?

These two weeks off have been very good for me. I've been sleeping - painlessly! - for 9 or 10 hours every night, resting a lot, eating a lot, and generally recharging my batteries. On the other hand, I now have to think about classes, which start again next week, and which then finish quite soon afterwards. The first week I start and finish my Tuesday and Friday classes, and the second week I finish my Thursday classes, and then the Monday and Wednesday classes drag on for another two weeks after that. It's all very confusing.

It also means that all the terribly important paperwork that I've been putting off for two weeks, or in some cases two months, cannot wait any longer. It must be finished before the last classes. That was one of the things I was supposed to do during this break, and I have three days left.

The terribly cruel joke about Japanese weather is that when it is exhaustingly hot and humid in the summer, when I'm not working, I can't sleep well because my neck plays up and I'm in pain all the time. Then when the humidity goes and with it the pain, it's so damned cold I don't want to get out of bed in the morning, but I have to, because I'm working. These two weeks have been heaven. I've been making up a sleep deficit going back six months.

The other problem is that resting well and feeling ten years younger feels so ... right. I obviously ended up with the wrong family. Somebody switched me with another baby at the hospital, and my real family is fantastically rich. Somewhere out there is a poor little rich girl who doesn't need to work but who feels compelled to, for reasons she can't understand. She goes out and works because she feels unfulfilled if she doesn't have a job. This is because she was not supposed to be born rich. I was.

It was all a terrible mistake. She has my life, and I have hers. I don't feel in the least bit unfulfilled when I'm not working. (Note to poor little rich girl: If you're reading this, I WANT MY LIFE BACK.)

However, I think I may have solved my procrastination problem. From now on, I am going to use the Common Civil Calendar. This will give me an extra day to get all this stuff done before classes start again. I have been told I have to be back in the classroom on January 11th, and according to my (newly adopted) calendar, January 11th is Wednesday. I'll do my paperwork on Tuesday.

And, talking about calendars (well I'm talking about calendars now, OK?) a while ago, well, earlier this year actually but let's pretend it was a few years ago so I don't seem quite so forgetful, I read a book called The Calendar, or maybe not, but anyway it was about the history of the calendar and was written by a guy whose name I can't remember but it might have been Peter somebody. This book has now disappeared into the black hole that is the teachers' room at my Thursday/Friday job, where someone is likely to see you reading something and say, "Oh, that looks interesting! Can I read that after you? I'll bring it back, promise." The book then vanishes forever, and you can't remember who 'borrowed' it, and nor can you remember the name of the book.

Anyway, where was I? Oh, yes. This book had a wonderful bit, well, a huge chunk if I remember rightly, which I might not, about the Gregorian calendar reform of 1582, when ten days were extracted from October. In some countries, that is. Others waited, not quite sure if this was a good idea. Like the dentistry of the time, this was not a painless extraction. It was all very confusing. There were riots, even. Some people believed they had had ten days stolen from them.

I feel as though I've had ten days stolen from me. I think it happened sometime at the beginning of the semester when I wasn't looking. If someone would just give me back those ten days I'll be able to catch up.

I wish I could remember what I started out wanting to say, but I can't, so I'll stop now.