Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011

Yesterday was my first day back at the office after our week-long vacation. I expected it to find a hellish amount of paperwork piled on my desk and too many e-mails to read in a single day. I’m happy to say my expectations were not met.

There were lots and lots of files, applications, and other paperwork on my desk, but I wouldn’t be able to describe the amount as hellish with a clear conscience. I’ve faced worse. I didn’t get my desk cleared off by the end of the day, but I got the most urgent requests answered, and the rest will get done today, unless the world explodes. I never take “unless the world explodes” out of the equation. That’s the universal qualifier.

I was sorely disappointed by my e-mail inbox, which had only 121 new messages. Before I left, I set up the out of office wizard to let people know I would be gone all week, but that’s never kept anybody from leaving messages before. I thought I’d come back to hundreds of new messages, most of them duplicates, and more than a few that were spam. No such thing. The ones I got were brief, necessary and almost none of them required my immediate reply. It was really weird.

Most of the piled-up work got done because there weren’t any meetings I was required to attend. I could hunker down at my desk and plow through the work without stopping. When I got my lunch hour pop-up on my computer (my brain cell has to be reminded to get up from my desk and eat lunch) I grabbed my lunch out of the fridge and munched on it while I graded papers. I don’t ordinarily skip lunch. In fact, I usually make sure to disappear myself completely from the office during my lunch so I don’t get cornered by anybody popping in to ask me a “quick” question, but I really wanted those papers off my desk.

I won’t have that kind of flexibility today. If memory serves, I have three meetings on my calendar today. Meetings are never less than a half-hour, because there’s a physical law that requires at least one person to arrive ten minutes late, and they’re usually at least an hour long because no matter what’s on the agenda, somebody has to ask “just one more question” that adds fifteen or twenty minutes of discussion to the meeting.

That’s enough talk about work, but tune in again later when I have the time to tell you all about the new printer system we’re going to have installed. Fun stuff.

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