Image from here.
In Mayberry, we all get our mail delivered to the community watering hole: The Post Office. This, being very different for a big city girl like me, has taken some getting used to. I have been known to go entire weeks before remembering to fetch my parcels. When we first got married, the postal service workers simply stopped putting flyers in our box; they took up so much room, and space was a precious commodity in a box that is exactly one inch cubed.
In my defense, the PO doesn’t have a drive-thru. If it did, I’d go every day. (And I wonder why I’ve put on weight…)
Thankfully, I’ve pretty much gotten my act together. Usually I remember to swing by the watering hole at least twice a week. Last Friday night was just such a day.
Having a bit of spare time before needing to start dinner, I decided to fill my daily quota of exercise by walking to the watering hole and picking up our mail. I grabbed my iPod™, bundled up, and headed out. The walk itself was uneventful, and I shoved the stack of papers into my backpack before even looking at them.
By the time I got home, it was time to start fixing dinner, and as soon as Poor Kyle walked through the doors we sat down to eat. After dinner, he went to unwind in the basement with some newfangled Xbox™ game, and I stayed upstairs to catch up on blog reading. Typical evening at our home…
…When all of a sudden, I remembered the mail in my bag. Wondering if anything interesting had come, I fetched the satchel and began rustling through the papers.
First I found an ad for Satan’s supermarket:
Next was a holiday card from a longtime friend…
…And then I spied an envelope bearing my new university’s letterhead.
“Oh, bother,” I thought, “What could these guys possibly have to tell me that couldn’t be sent in an email? It’s got to be some pamphlet garbage.” In case you couldn’t tell, I’m very suspicious of universities and their mail-outs. (My days at ASU turned me into a bitter hag, I suppose [something in the water out there]).
Then I noticed which department had sent it…
“‘Scholarships and Student Finance?’ Well, I know I didn’t get a scholarship because I missed the application deadline, so this must be something to do with my tuition. But it’s not due until February, so it can’t be a late bill… They better not have raised my fees! Dirty crooks…”
I opened the envelope and briefly scanned the words on the enclosed letter.
Then I scanned the words again, a little less briefly.
Then I re-read each and every syllable, just to make sure I wasn’t seeing things.
Can you believe what this university did to me?? See for yourself:
They totally gave me money that I didn’t ask for [I meant to ask for it, but I took one look at those scary forms with tax questions, and I put it off for too many tomorrows]. Sweet. I’ll take it.
In retrospect, I can see that this may be a form of twisted manipulation: charging me three times the cost of residential tuition for no reason other than the fact that I come from a different country; then totally throwing me a bone and cutting my fees down to only TWICE as much what the other students are paying, in the hopes that they’ll gain my undying loyalty and approval…
…Actually, they may be on to something. I am pretty stoked. Although I don’t know what my school’s mascot is yet; that might be good to learn since I will be a member of this particular university’s alumni in a few semesters.
Anyway, I’ve had a really fantastic weekend. I’ve lost a few pounds since Christmastime, I earned $1,000 for doing absolutely nothing, and I finally organised the hall closet which has been suffocating me since I moved here.
p.s. I should also note that a big thank you goes to a different personal scholarhip backer who donated majorly to my cause of getting a degree. Another chunk of change I didn’t even need to ask for. One that will help in so many ways. Thank you; it is very much appreciated.