Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Some Old-School Bitchin' and Moanin'

I am going to be co-teaching a couple of translation/interpreting classes this coming up semester, and so far I have no contract and have not heard from my teaching partner, who is actually in charge of the classes. So I contacted the person who asked me to do the job, and she told me who I needed to see in the department about the contract.

You have to understand the German office system—and this applies to private businesses, public offices, and even doctors—there is no 8-5 availability. The people may be there, but they hold office hours (like university profs in the US), and that is the only time they are open to people who do not work in their direct office environment. (Actually, for my doctor’s office at least, this means that they have “walk-in” office hours in the morning, but to see the doctor in the afternoon you have to have an appointment.) For university employees this can be as little as *1 hour per week*. I shit you not. This person is officially only available on Wednesdays 10:30-11:30. So yesterday when I got the reply from my contact person, I thought, “Hey, good timing, Nee,” and trotted on over this morning.

And the chick is out sick. The secretary in that office is... not very friendly. The secretary’s office is actually open to the public every morning, so I popped my head in to ask a question about the missing person, and you’d think I had interrupted her in the middle of open-heart surgery the way she looked at me. I’m sorry to interrupt your web-surfing, beeyotch, but I’ve got a problem that *falls within the scope of your job duties*. Aaarrgh!

So there was an hour-and-a-half down the toilet when I could have been proofreading (or blogging *g*). But I feel better now for bitching about it, so maybe I can settle down to work.

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