Getting a welcome tote bag two years later
Saturday, Mar. 26, 2022 - 10:15 am.

Health issues and even death have been lurking around our social circles this week. One acquaintance from the Psych department lost her mom in an accident, another lost her grandmother. My friend/thesis student C's husband is also having a very serious medical scare, but let's just wait for test results. 
There's more, but thankfully less serious, though it could've been. Helen spent her birthday last Monday with covid. Although she felt like crap for a couple of days, it hasn't been that bad, given the array of possible symptoms and consequences. My boss got a covid scare before her birthday on Wednesday, but her result was negative.

At home, I'm happy to inform that Andrew and I plus the cats remain in good health. Except for my jaw that's almost always bothering or hurting, but I have a follow-up appointment this week, I hope I can get some answers. 

Besides that, on the personal front, days are becoming eventful. I always have work going on for me, but now I have to go to uni here and there, to run errands or attend meetings, and soon enough to give a lecture (just two this semester, good thing because I'm not a fan of teaching full courses). "Go to uni" just means crossing the street from my apartment, which I appreciate given the high traffic that now prevails all over the city.

Yesterday I went to an induction event for new uni employees. That's funny because I started as an employee in March 2020, but right then the pandemic hit and a lot of admin processes came to a halt. I was so lucky that my boss got me this job right as life as we know it was shutting down, but I've never been clear on how uni functions, who's who and all that.

I have a contract with the Research and Postgrad Offices, but only because that's where my boss got funding from to hire me (bless her). I actually work for, well, for her in her research projects, for a Social Sciences Unit and sometimes with the Psych Department. And above all that, I'm my own boss because this research project I run is nearly full-time. And I don't have an office anywhere. So it's hard to feel that I fit in or belong in uni.

Nevertheless, I appreciate the benefits of being an employee. I got this "obligatory invitation" for an induction, and while I thought about skipping it, I figured it was time I started carving a space for myself here. Might as well be seen and learn how stuff works, and hopefully they'll keep renewing my contract every year.

I stepped out of the apartment building yesterday to attend the induction and there was a student riot, tear gas and cops all over the street a block away (at the main university gates). It felt like everything was back to normal, though that shit is disfunctional as fuck, even if it used to happen every Friday before the pandemic. I still walked through campus to the building where the induction was scheduled, and inside campus everything was calm and quiet.

The induction was great. It was three hours of people talking, but I learned about institutional resources, benefits and support, and I got a tote bag with goodies, what a joy. I checked in with myself all day yesterday: knowing me, I'd be complaining all the time about going to this thing, all cranky and bitter, but I was actually looking forward to it like a nerd.

And that's me for now. Andrew and I are doing well, just crossing fingers that he soon too will be able to attend one of these induction events. A research project of his own is coming to an end, and it seems he'll get a contract with uni. They say he will, but we won't believe it until he's signed it.

Although things are going quite well around here, let me get this off my chest: I sorely miss Sheffield.

And happy birthday, Steven Tyler! <3

Stay safe, take care of yourself.

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