Tuesday, August 19, 2008
time vs. money
Today someone tried to put a monetary value on my time. I went to get my car inspected and have some basic maintenance done. After checking in I settled into the waiting room to do some preparation work for the upcoming school year. When I'd gotten a lot done I moved on to reading my book, ate a snack, read some more and finally (after 3 hours) I went to ask how much longer it would be. Turns out that the paper work for my car had been misplaced for a while, but I was all set to go in another 40 minutes. To apologize for the mistake and the extra time, they offered to find me a coupon and gave me a $10 gas card. At that point I was hungry and stiff from sitting in a hard chair so long that I didn't care what they gave me, I just wanted to go home. As I drove back, I realized what an absurd concept that really is. My wasted time is worth $10 in gas? The two don't compare. I have been thinking a lot lately about how important my time is. I enjoy working as a teacher because of all the built in vacation time, and the fact that I get home around 4:00 (even though I have more work to do). It is very important to me that I have a short commute, because I have no interest in spending my time in the car. Having extra money is not worth wasting my time. I feel very lucky that I can say that, that I have enough money, that I can afford to live near where I work, and that even though I wish I hadn't spent so long waiting for my car today, it didn't really cost me much more than some sunshine.