I feel weirdly disconnected from things happening at home. For example, I keep looking at stuff for "Occupy [Wall Street or somewhere else]," and I don't understand what's happening, really. Of course, there's a very good chance that I wouldn't really understand even if I were in the States, since I'm not very familiar with Wall Street sorts of stuff.
I got a letter from the state, and it was dismal. And another from our HR folks, about some tax withholding thing that they did differently or that changed because I changed health insurers for next year, or something. I'm unclear. It was one of those letters that starts out with a statement about how you're getting this letter because you fall into one of three categories, all highly legalese, and the only one I could fit into has to do with changing my health insurer for next year or maybe the your benefits have changed category.
And that was exciting. Being here, I couldn't attend any of the meetings, but as seems to happen almost every year, my insurer has decided not to serve our area, or not to have a contract with the clinic I go to, or blah blah. I've changed insurers about 6 times in 10 years. And I think a lot of my colleagues have, too. I wonder how much time we non Human Resources folks are devoting to trying to figure out our benefits problems, especially in the past few years with furloughs and all.
And while I would never actually do it, I wish I could just tell them to shove their insurance plan where the sun don't shine.
The good news is that we're not having furloughs this year. The bad news is that the pay cut hurts. (And I think that's what the other possibility about the letter I got is, since we're now going to not have certain benefits and others will now be taxed or something.)
Did you see that the governor of Walkerstan is supposedly going to get a 5.4% pay raise. And all state employees will have a pay freeze with the cut in place. I don't know how he doesn't count as a state employee.
I got my course assignments for next year, and now I have to figure out and send off my request for my teaching schedule. But it feels very far away. Still, I love that we get to request a teaching schedule and usually get something pretty close to what we request. I think it's one of those things we do as a department that makes our lives better.
I miss my pals, my biking pals, my eating pals, my just relaxing pals. There are good folks here, but I do miss my pals.
And at 1 in the morning, I miss being able to go use a toilet without having a good chance of passing a student skyping in the hall outside the bathroom.
I think I may have a tad bit of crankiness, eh?