The Great Hebridean Holiday was behind me. Although, it’ll take a good deal longer to process the many experiences that I’ve had. During the vacation hiatus, this diary was placed on ‘pause’. Instead, my ruminations while I was away took the form of Twitter feeds and notes to myself in the ‘Black Notebook’. The tweets were either memorials to moments (‘Lest we forget’) or mementos of the heart’s murmurings.
The Dailies (July 27 – August 20)
The Murmurings (July 29 – August 11)
9.00 am: My iMac at the School took an hour to become operational. There were updates, and infills, and synchronisations to perform and, inevitably, these processes are slow with only 8 GB RAM to play with. I held an impromptu tutorial with one of the MA fine art students who’ll be presenting their second exhibition in September.
10.30 am: There were 54-substantial emails in my Inbox awaiting a response. (The heart grows faint.) In parallel, I awaited the (potential) arrival of Clearing applicants, second-marked resit submissions, and began organising postgraduate tutorials for next week. These days, what floors me is not the difficulty of any particular task but, rather, their uncoordinated multiplicity and simultaneity. Throughout the morning, I gradually teased apart a tangled twine of many chords and, then, grouped them into types before dealing with individual matters. Everything shouts: ‘NOW!’. I shout, in response: ‘NO!’
2.00 pm: On, then, to postgraduate applications, arrangements for next week’s teaching, and liaison with staff regarding the coming postgraduate show. Already, one of the studios is being prepared for the event.
7.30 pm: The evening shift.
I’d whittled down 54 emails to just 17 by the close of the day. None have been a delight to answer; my responses needed to be only perfunctory and informative. I cannot but think that we have become mired in a bureaucracy that threatens to suffocate the very thing it’s designed to administer. Properly speaking, admin ought to facilitate, rather than impede, action. I filled out a form, while at the same time correcting its punctuation and format. Life is too short.