Tim came in a bit later, and we chatted for a few minutes about his and Minoo's vacation in upstate New York, staying in an historic cottage owned by his family along the St. Lawrence River. He went through great acrobatics to disconnect let me borrow his ethernet line, since my office is missing that right now, which turned out to be a waste since I couldn't get any signal through it and had to work with my laptop's wireless, instead. I went in just to talk to Sara for a few minutes, but ended up feeling good enough that I put in about seven hours of office work, much of which was dedicated to restoring my laptop to working order. The computer I got from the department was never quite willing to accept me as the new owner, and lots of simple functions kept getting interrupted with demands for the previous owner's password and permission. I had all that information, but between the interruptions, and the outright refusal of the computer to let me do some tasks, I had to back up all my material online (over the wi-fi connection, which took time), then wipe the hard drive entirely, re-install the system software, and then also reinstall things like Microsoft Office. Clunky, plodding work, most of it, but it was stuff that had to get done at some point, and needed a goodly chunk of time in order to barrel through it all. Feeling as good as I did, I made a go of it and felt far more productive than I had all week. I even got a little texting done with Kevin as he was having dinner at the Peninsula Chicago, where one of his clients is putting him up in ridiculously posh accommodations. And when my computer was stuck for long stretches of minutes doing its thing, I read a fascinating essay on the history of the development of the Creole population in the New Orleans area.
Around sunset, I looked up and noticed the light playing off the library and the buildings of downtown New Orleans, three miles off in the distance. So I took a few shots of my new window view, overlooking the Peace Quad and the Monroe Library, sent one off to Mom since I knew she'd be curious, and went back to poking at the laptop. I'm happy to say that when I left, it was acting like a state-of-the-art computer, and not like a 1999 dial-up trying to download a feature film. Much more satisfactory.