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In normal days good things happen and bad things happen, and they sort of cancel out. Or nothing happens at all.

I slept for less than four hours and woke up at 7 A.M. with the sound of what seemed to be a thousand dogs barking under my window. A day that begins like that can't be a good one.

Work was just a never ending rain of problems that kept on pouring in the form of e-mails and error messages. The morning went away without me being able to solve any of them, there were problems hidden under problems.

Meanwhile I was waiting since last friday for an e-mail from a professor that would tell me if I had to take a final exam next week. And time was running out.

I had lunch, gave a quick read to my Numerical Calculus notes so as not to be caught with my guard down, and walked to university to talk with the other guy and see if I finally had to take the test. "The other guy" is the Numerical Calculus professor. It's a rather difficult thing to explain, because this subject is divided into Numerical Calculus and Differential Equations. Each part is independent, but the grade is an average of both.

I didn't know if he was going to be there, he doesn't live here and this year's courses are already over. But I had a vague idea that he said he would come on December 13, I hadn't written it anywhere.

Anyway, it was cloudy and the sun hit hard. There were a lot of people in the street, at least for 3 P.M. I saw a lot of them smiling and wondered why. I was still cross, and it seemed as if everyone was happy on purpose. It would be nice to be able to be happy on purpose.

Along the way there were beautiful people and ugly people, young people and old people who could barely walk, idlers and office workers, pedestrians and drivers willing to run you over. There were also two girls in her late teens playing in a merry-go-round.

When I arrived I checked the timetable at the front door, nothing there. I went through every classroom, no luck. I asked at the place where the staff checks in, but they had no clue.

As I was coming out of the building I came across a classmate, and two seconds later the professor came round the corner talking on his cell phone.

Long story short: he told me that I don't have to take the exam.

I went back home in a better mood, and bought a National Geographic magazine along the way. It was the first time I bought a magazine in ten years, since I got Internet at home.

The rest of the day went away pretty smoothly. At night I dreamt I was in Italy and I spoke in French. What it has to do with the rest of the story? Nothing at all, but it's a good sign.

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