I spent this last week working hard to get a little bit ahead. Wrote the final exams, read all the last minute papers, recorded grades. Then on Friday, I devoted most of the day to working on that new syllabus for next semester. The one that I was doing in conjunction with the faculty development workshops. All faculty in the workshop are supposed to submit their syllabus to the group next Friday for critique.
At 4:30 pm, all fucking hell broke loose in my work life when the computer crashed. See, I back up my work every Friday when I leave for the day. That means that at 4:30, I was oh, about an hour away from backup for the week. And the computer froze completely. Nothing worked, so I turned it off and then rebooted. And it cycled through boot to crash, boot to crash, endlessly.
The department secretary called the IT people, who said they'd send someone up. Then she told me that our computers were refurbished things, that recently the mother board had gone out on several of them, including hers, and that what I was describing sounded just like what happened to hers. Good to know. Perhaps someone could have told me that when I fucking started in August. If I'd known, I would've backed up my work daily rather than weekly.
This seemed to be the end of my ability to smile and take things in stride. I went back to my office, broke down, and cried like a damned baby. I'd tried so hard all semester to be positive no matter how stressful things were. And as much as I love my job, things have been crazy this semester. But I kept it together, kept going. Even my office mate said once recently 'You always have a smile on your face, no matter how stressed out you are.' I tried. I really did.
So the secretary left at 5 as usual, and I stayed in my office waiting for the tech. At 5:15, I pulled myself together and called the helpdesk to ask how much longer the wait would be. And was told that yes, my request had emergency status, but unfortunately, the tech had just left for the day. Before coming up to help me. He would continue the emergency status for the night tech, but the night tech was 'in the field' right at the moment and so he couldn't give me an estimate of when he'd be available.
I asked if I had to wait for the tech, and he said no, as long as the secretary was there to let the tech in my office (they don't have keys) it would be fine. Well, I said, of course the department is closed and the secretary gone for the day, it's 5:30 on a Friday, so I guess that means I'll wait till the tech gets here.
At 7:15, I made several calls to the help desk that went unanswered, so I left a messaage. At 8 pm, I called the college operator to explain the situation and ask if there were any other extension I could call to reach the tech. She informed me that the help desk was closed and they'd left for the day. There were night techs, but not at the help desk. She would ask them about my problem and call me back.
Well, the night tech claims not to have received the message about my emergency situation and wasn't coming. Seems no one gave a fucking damn that I was sitting alone in my office on the sixth floor, waiting. I thanked the operator for calling me back. And then I broke down and cried again.
This time it wasn't the stress, it was frustration over waiting for so long, and no one giving a fuck that I waited. I simply couldn't believe they would do that to me. I had lunch at 11 that morning, so I was, in addition to being completely freaked out about the loss of work, damned hungry to boot.
I pulled myself together for a second time that evening and headed for the subway and train, not even knowing if my work on the hard drive for this week was salvagable or if I'd spend next week recreating everything -- which will set me back a hell of a lot.
I wanted a beer, badly. I put my calming music on my Zen, first Legends of the Fall, then Tchaikovsky, but neither was doing it for me. I needed my Cranberries. And the Daffodil Lament.
I stopped by the deli in my village to pick up a Corona, realized I had eat nothing, bought a sandwich and soda, and made it home about 10:30. Of course, after eating, I didn't want the Corona, so it sits in my fridge for now.
This is a live version of Daffodil Lament: