What I’ve learned today

  1. The Fates are tricksy bitches.

So the past two days have been an odd combination of bad and good, and I can only blame those tricksy wenches we like to call the Fates. Without spelling out all of my financial woes for your displeasure, what basically happened yesterday was:

  • In the past week, my credit cards were both cancelled because the bank(s) suspected fraudulent activity. (Oddly enough, Chad’s card was similarly cancelled only a week earlier. I blame the recent economic crisis — I bet there’s really been no ‘fraudulent activity’ on any of our cards. The banks are just getting tight(er) with their money.)
  • Said cards were promptly replaced with shiny new cards.
  • Shiny new cards have forgettable PINs.
  • PINs were forgotten.
  • Cards were eaten by ravenous ATMs.
  • I was stranded in Tassie with less than $7 (in shrapnel) in my wallet, and had to rely on the good graces of a bunch of friendly conference go-ers in order to get to/from the University of Tasmania for the meeting.

OK, so all of that sounds pretty crap.

Enter the Fates:

  • After the marathon meeting of boredom, I was chatting with the editor of Parergon, who asked me to submit an article for publication. Hooray (we’ll overlook the fact that I haven’t actually written the article yet and go straight to the celebratory ‘Hooray’!)
  • As I stepped out of the board room, I bumped into a fellow Adelaidean and Flinders post-grad, who happily walked me to an ATM and lent me some well-needed $$$ so that I could a) eat, and b) get back to the airport to catch my flight home.
  • Later, as I scammed a free lunch from the conference, I bumped into one of my colleagues from the ‘Vikings Research Network’ who gave me some excellent references for the (enormous and tedious) ‘Nation’ chapter of my thesis.
  • As I sat in the airport waiting to come home, the first scene of my short short fell out of my head, and landed in my notebook.
  • On the plane on the way home, another exciting short story popped into my head and won’t leave me alone.

After teasing me with such happy occurrences, the Fates took the night off… and awoke in a surly mood:

  • Got online this morning and discovered that if you held my bank account up to your ear, you’d hear the ocean.
  • Found out that my sister is in the hospital (not life threatening)
  • Found out that my aunt just had surgery to remove a brain tumour (much more life threatening). She is in recovery; doctors are optimistic; we aren’t sure if she will have lost any of her senses because of the surgery (they predict she’ll lose either her sense of smell, or her sense of taste, possibly some eye sight. Maybe none of the above.)

Then the Fates had a tea break, at which point I think they spiked their coffees with Schnappes:

  • At noon, I lined up another design contract here at Flinders (short-term, but good $$, to be completed before Christmas.)
  • Had a delicious lunch.
  • As I was heading down to the pine forest for a quick post-lunch stroll, I was stopped by the editor of one of the Creative Writing journals here at Flinders, who proceeded to ask me if I’d be willing to revamp their website. Answer? $$$=YES!
  • Got an email from HR about the end of my contract at the FHRC — discovered I’ll be getting a nice payout for all of my accumulated leave.

So, all told, the past two days have looked like this:







And at 3pm I’m off to the launch of Transnational Literature (…and I’ve nearly wasted enough time to get me to 3.00!)



    1. I just read about your shoulder’s rendez-vous with a ghostly hand! Very cool. My nanna, who was entirely sane, used to play cards with a poltergeist late at night. At any rate, I maintain that *your* ghost just wanted to read Finbar’s Mother.
      And as for my up-down-up-down-up-down days? I’m bouncy. All will be well 🙂

      1. *I’d* like to read Finbar’s Mother too! 🙂
        Have set that bit up as a prologue in the hope that the rest of the story dribbles out too … but then last night I was reading and discovered that Finbhair is a gril’s name … sigh … and I so wanted Finbar to be a boy.

      2. I want Finbar to be a boy, too. There’s a different kind of poignancy when a mother mourns for a son than there is when a mother mourns for a daughter. And the prologue bit definitely emits a mother/son vibe. Can Finbar still be a boy anyway? At the meeting yesterday, one of the board members was named Constant, and he was a man. I think it’s much weirder having a male Constant than it is having a male Finbar… 😉

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