Day -2: Starting to get Nervous

8:15am: So, today is two days before the first day of school. I got up early, had a nice breakfast in the dining hall, and was all set to get to work in my classroom to start putting away all the physics stuff I brought with me. I try one set of doors, and none of my keys work. Weird. I try the other set of doors, and one is unlocked. Sweet! I walk in and there’s a weird beeping noise. Oh, shit. The alarm. I text a colleague to ask them for suggestions, but he doesn’t answer. In the meantime the beeping noise becomes a red alert klaxon of DOOM. Yes, at 8am on Monday morning, the last day of the summer that many people will be able to sleep in, I set off the intruder alarm on the science building.

The person watering the plants called for security who came and turned it off. He also gave me the code to avoid doing that next time I waltz in. So, at last! I can access my classroom and office! Except that none of the keys on the big wad I was given are to any of the rooms I need to open! One work request later, I’m not hanging out in one of the admin buildings not actually getting any work done.

10:20: At about 9, I tried again, and my office mate was here, which meant I could access my classroom through my office and all is well with the world. I had unpacked all the boxes and bins of stuff earlier, piling it in rough content categories plus a “what the hell do I do with this? Whatever. I’m sure it’ll be useful someday” pile and a “vaguely office supplies-ish” pile. Today I got the stuff put back into the bins, because practically every cabinet in this room has something in it, but only like one or two things, but enough that there’s no easy way to put more in them. I talked to Charlie about a big reorg next summer, and he was on board. It’s almost funny how everything I ask about “Do you have strong feelings about *thing*?” is answered, “No, [Predecessor] did, so we did things his way.” Four decades at an institution gets you a lot of clout. It’s now as if everyone is now free to make new choices and change the Way Things Are Done. It’s really great.

11:00: Posters are up, tables are cleaned off, every inch of counter space is my office is covered in physics stuff including three giant bins of holiday lights for a project that I probably won’t even get to do this year, but when I do again I’LL BE READY. Now I need to figure out first-day activities for my three preps and get some stuff printed.

11:10: Turns out I can’t access my textbooks, either. I guess this is why people generally start doing this sort of thing more than two days before the first day of class, huh. Whatevs. I’ll figure it out. Ready or not, here Wednesday comes.

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