95 drive-bys outside University Hall

The absence of the SBS bus No. 95 is a bother on most days. After exam invigilation, its tiring. Students pour out of exam halls and the buses are few and far between. By the time it reaches University Hall, the buses are so full they just drive by.

I had reached department by 7.30pm after script verification, dumped everything and grabbed my new load of scripts and high-tailed it out of there. I was actually eager to get back to recapture my momentum of the morning’s marking. After 20 mins, I was drenched in perspiration from the humidity of the still air and left with the ominous feeling that the situation was not going to improve. So I SMSed Ladybug for SBS’ IRIS data. The reply said “7 mins more.” And 7 minutes later, I watched yet another student-filled 95 breeze by.

At 8pm, some admin staff emerged from University Hall. They’ve probably seen it all before and immediately started calling for cabs. But most cabs in the vicinity were already booked. Labour Day eve compounded the usual problem. So everyone waited, although I am sure most felt the next 95 would be a drive-by too.

So I gave in and called for rescue – Ladybug came before the bus in a borrowed car. We grabbed three others from the bus stop – one lady in particular had been waiting far longer than me, for more than an hour. She looked pretty far gone, and I found out she had been spring cleaning all day today. She’s from my department.

I felt guilty about the rest we had abandoned but wished on them an empty 95.

I went home and cooked. Will resume marking tomorrow.

Exhausting week, too tired to blog

I have been hunting down students, marking and processing marks for the past two weeks. Did what I could and my Reading Week schedule went out the window; good lesson though. It’s all over now and boy oh boy, was excel useful! I updated the post about excel functions I use to check marks and will provide it with figures as a webpage for the TAs. I will be getting them to use the gradebook functions built into NUS’ web-based IVLE system.

Am now dealing with the last of student queries via MSN; setup a live.com account for that. Still have the honours theses to examine this weekend. Hopefully I finish that before the exams begin on Monday. I am actually looking forward to marking exam papers to make comparisons after the changes in teaching methods I applied this semester.

Meanwhile, the exam invigilation reminders have turned up at the entrance of the department office. This announces the final and critical leg of the semester. Laurence used to present them like performance billings but I guess he’s too busy mopping up coffee to get fancy. At least he kept the colour, very useful. Its a good reason to drop by the department office every now and then. You can keep track of breaking news!

The notice reminded me of the stress our students must be under so I I SMS-ed cheery greetings to my research students and Toddycats project managers – I had their numbers in my handphone and ssw their replies come in thick and fast!

Thankfully, back at home, Mr Bats has been keeping me company during my marking processing and student hunting phase. He will reprise that role next week.


Sometimes he crawls in to a nice comfortable bag and territorially swipes at my hand when it ventures too close his “cave door”…