I’ve been dreading this week, because I realized I had accidentally picked up TWO extra advising shifts this week. I have a tough enough time getting through one advising shift per week! But people needed coverage, and I hate not volunteering to help out if I can, so I did.
I also had a colleague visiting from Ireland on Monday. She’s super nice and I actually really enjoyed hanging out with her, but it’s still tiring. Not to mention, on Sunday she called me and, very last-minute, invited me to a gathering at the home of her friend she was staying with. Last minute invitations to social events are hard! Being social is difficult enough for me, but when I’m not expecting to have to do it and haven’t been able to gear myself up for it, it’s really difficult. Plus, I wasn’t going to know ANYONE there except for her, and I barely knew her. But I kind of felt like I had to go, so I did. And actually, it was fine. There were mostly old people at the party! And old people are easier to talk to, somehow. Also, I actually find it easier to talk to people I’ve never met before, as opposed to people I know casually but don’t really have anything in common with or anything interesting to talk about with. If you know the person, you have to think of something to start a conversation about, rather than just introducing yourself and asking how the person knows the hostess, what they do for a living, etc, like you can do with a complete stranger. Funnily enough, more than one person commented on how brave I was for coming to this party when I knew I wasn’t going to know anyone. I actually ended up having fun at the party, and I didn’t stay super long, maybe an hour and a half or two hours, but still, I was proud of myself.
The party, and thus where my Irish colleague was staying, was actually only about 5 minutes from my house, and her friend, who normally would drive her to the university for work on Monday, ironically enough, had jury duty! So I offered to pick my colleague up in the morning, and she was very appreciative. It was no problem for me, and like I said, this colleague is really nice. So I picked her up around 9 (got to sleep in on a Monday morning, too– woot!), and then we went and did the orientation for my students going to Ireland this summer. There were only 2, so it was very low-key. Then my Irish visitor and I went to have a coffee, and didn’t really even talk about work – just had a chat. It was nice. Then she had meetings with some other peeps in the office, and I had my Monday afternoon advising shift, so we parted ways.