How much is enough? I’ll start with (another) story of disorientation. It began three days ago. On Sunday night I flew to St. Paul. It is fairly uneventful as flights go. I sit alone. I read and write. I plan for the week. On the ground this calm uneventful evening starts to unravel slowly. Snow is pouring.Read More
Being here on campus this week reminds me of that first trip as a new hire. I arrived late in the evening to the snowy winter dark. The next morning I went in search of breakfast. I hoped I could remember where the dining hall was. I found it (eventually), but I felt disoriented at every turn. I couldn’t even decide what to eat. And I was slightly nervous about my first day on the job. When I finally managed to get a bowl of oatmeal together and some toast, I stepped up to the register to pay.
It was J-term which meant there weren’t many people in the cafeteria at 7:30 a.m. There was no line. I put down my food.
“You don’t owe anything,” the cashier said.
“Do what?” I sputtered.
“Someone already paid for your breakfast.”