I’m ashamed to admit this week I’ve had a minor meltdown of sorts.

It started last week in the most normal way- I had a horrible nightmare about an observing run. Or rather an observing run that didn’t happen because I was an idiot and put off travel arrangements so much that I *forgot* to go on the observing run.

Now for most astronomers I don’t think this would phase them. As I’ve learned from twitter, the observing run nightmare is common amongst most of us. I think I actually qualify as some people’s nightmares as I’m rarely ever ready at dusk for observing, though in my defense it’s because I’ve learned to go with the flow because inevitability the instrument acts up at dusk the first night. But given that I’ve been in this field for way over a decade, having my first observing run nightmare scared the shit out of me.

I came to the conclusion however that this was all because I hadn’t seen the fall telescope schedule yet. See in October while I was at the DPS meting I may have requested a week of observing in the spring. And I may have put Feb to April as acceptable months. Back in October this date range hadn’t made me think twice, but now with a defense date set in late April and a committee submission date of April 1, I was a little stressed out.

Well apparently a comedy of errors took place and in fact the night I had that nightmare was the night the preliminary spring telescope schedule was sent out to every institution except University of the Frozen Tundra. A kinda soul at one of the other universities forwarded me the schedule Sunday night. . . Guess who got scheduled for a week of observing starting March 30th?

But of course I didn’t know that University of the Frozen Tundra hadn’t gotten the schedule. . .I just though my advisor “forgot” to tell me the schedule had gone out. I spent Sunday night freaking out and trying to figure out how to draft an email with a minimum amount of 4 letter words yet a catchy subject line. Apparently the subject “Preliminary Spring Telescope Schedule, oh crap no” was what was needed.

In the end the run is getting cut down to 3 nights which I find more reasonable. Otherwise I was looking at 10 nights of travel (with the 7 nights of observing and then travel days) like I did in Late October for Hartley 2 observing support which really wore me out. And I’m still not clear if I’m observing or if my advisor is doing it for me (or drafting one of the poor grad students out of the lab that doesn’t even do solar system!) but I’m glad I had a meltdown because the resolution was a huge weight off my shoulders.

Now I just need to submit paper #3 of my dissertation and finish writing paper #4 on the wee asteroids (or weesteroids as they have been termed by some) and then maybe I can stop having meltdowns about my dissertation deadline.

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