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Dealing with crazy days March 30, 2009

Posted by Jill (@bonnjill) in Random musings.

Man, I am happy to see this day end! I am surprised I got as much accomplished as I did. Susanne III calls these days “ADD days” – days when you can’t concentrate on anything for any length of time. In my case, it was due to constant interruptions.

My day started with a client calling me to tell me that the translation I had planned on working on today had been shortened by two pages. She wanted to know if I had started it, and I was happy to tell her that I hadn’t. It had been a crazy weekend, and the jobs I had worked on had taken up more time than I had planned.

I went to my computer to download the new file – and got error message after error message. My e-mail was down – dead as a doornail – es ging absolut gar nix! Not only could Mailwasher and my e-mail program not download my e-mail – I couldn’t even load my ISP’s website to check my mail online or even my own website. I kept getting Page Load Errors and network timeouts. Something was definitely not right. It took several hours to deal with the problem. Luckily I asked my colleague and our resident computer guru on the ATA German Language Division listserv if he had heard of any problems with my ISP in Germany. He reported he was having problems with his GMX account. He did some research and got back to me. It turns out United Internet owns both 1&1 and GMX – not to mention web.de. In the end, it turns out it was a server problem at a backbone provider called XO.net in the UK. Roadrunner (Roland and my ISP here in the U.S.) could not access any sites owned by United Internet. I called their third level support, who called someone who managed to fix the problem by 6 PM. So to those of you who have Roadrunner as an ISP and had problems today: you’re welcome. In the meantime, I hacked into an unsecure wireless network near my home and was able to access my e-mail and get to work translating, delivering a medical report, counting the lines of the PPT file I delivered Sunday night, and writing invoices.

But that wasn’t even the strangest part of the day. Oh no! Around two o’clock my phone rang. It was my neighbor across the street telling me that all the police cars outside were due to a strange briefcase left at the Planned Parenthood down the street. They blocked the road at both ends and put up lots of orange barrels to restrict traffic. But people kept trying to drive through anyways. Man, people these days are selfish and entitled! I amused myself watching the police yell at people trying to drive through the parking lot across the street only to find themselves blocked in by barrels in the middle of the stretch. The bomb squad was called in, and two hours later the drama was over. It was a false alarm, which didn’t surprise me one bit.

Luckily I only had 800 words to translate instead of the previously assigned 1600. I don’t think if I would have gotten any more than that accomplished, because I had to be somewhere by 7 tonight. What a strange and exciting day it was. I really, really hope tomorrow is blissfully uneventful.

As for you, dear readers – what is the craziest day you’ve ever had to deal with and how did you handle it?



1. Susanne Aldridge III - April 2, 2009

Oh the joy of ADD days – one of the problems is that I am actually ADD without the H). Usually, I can get somewhat control it but there are those days where I basically flip to my browser to surf after every sentence or two. And I can’t help it. It usually comes with a crumby day in general, followed by an annoying job and I simply cannot focus. I guess the only way to get me to concentrate would be to unplug the network but even then I would probably find something else like deleting duplicate files on my hard drive.
Thank god I have the best boss in the world. I believe he notices these days but he knows that I will always keep my deadline and I think he knows that it actually bothers me too.

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