Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Abrupt Changes in the Weather Expected

I woke up this morning, sleep-deprived and in an inexplicably bad mood. Nothing had happened and I hadn't even made it out of my room - but my god, I was foul foul foul tempered.

Some good did come out of it though. My foul mood gave me a suitable temper in which to ask the roommate for the money she owed me. I had been skirting the issue for a long time, because I am a big fat chicken when it comes to money issues. The last time I tried, she opened the door looking sick, tired and in an overall bad state - and I almost cowered over in my chickenness.

Not today. I was pissed off enough (at nothing in particular) to not to bother with the niceties. And as she started to rattle off the same pitiful excuses about the sorry state of her finances, I stopped her in mid-sentence and told her, hey, look everyone has problems, ok?

Still grumpy, I headed off to class. We watched a 40 min documentary which I thought was pretty interesting, but the students kept nodding off and I felt bad about that. I feel a strange obligation to be entertaining, at the very least. Which explains why I tend to rattle off in a stressed out manner when I sense I'm 'losing' them, (hello? hello? are you all still here?) or break out into sudden theatrics/antics.

But my favourite part of the day is after the class. Sometimes I would leave the campus and see a bunch of them having tea at the small tea stall outside, and (most of the time) they would wave and I would invite myself into their group. Things were awkward at first, the guys were scared to smoke in front of the teacher - but I soon corrected that misconception. However, I couldn't stop them calling me 'ma'am', and I've since given up on that cause.

I did worry about possible consequences. I worried that by becoming so friendly, they would lose all respect and I would end up having a class of students who didn't give a damn what I said. It seems to have worked out just fine.

I take pride in this, because they could just as easily ignore me when they see me outside. I suppose, even if I sucked at teaching, my company as a human being couldn't be that bad. As much as I'd like to deny it, its true - I want to be liked.

The foul mood lifted for a bit after the congenial banter with the students, but it got worse when I made my way to the other office. It's a long story, but simply put - I am an impatient person who becomes even more impatient when I'm in a bad mood.

Do we really need to spend 15 minutes talking about a subject when there's absolutely nothing to discuss about? We have a problem. The tech guys will fix it. End of story. No amount of talking or repetition of the facts will make that process go faster.

And I really do not need you to repeat something to me THREE times within the span of an hour after you've already emailed me about it. Jesus.

I apologise. I would not have felt so pissy about it if I had been in a better mood. At some point I even checked the calendar because I figured this has got to be a case of PMS.

By the end of the day, the frown on my face was practically etched in, and I got on the rickshaw to seek a little solitude at a nearby rooftop cafe overlooking the man-made lake. I found what I was looking for.

The weather was beautiful today, for once. It hadn't rained the entire day. I settled down with a drink and Jan White's book on layout and design (great stuff) and just soaked in the sunset. It was the magic hour, when the colours changed right before your eyes. And just like that, everything was lifted.

Since then, I've had shisha, a lot of laughs, chilled out at the apartment that'll soon be my new place, had a cheeseburger and watched half of Danny Boyle's Sunshine. In other words, the day's been worth it.