How to Make the Best Use of Slack Time

One of the main causes of my frustration in Israel is that I cannot rely on the timetable of buses, both inside the city and between cities; they are generally late, but sometimes they also arrive earlier. While waiting for a bus that did not arrive even after 30 minutes of delay in Jerusalem, I calculated how many hours I waste a year because of the unreliable timetable of buses. I was stunned to find that I waste as many as 100 hours at least and 200 hours at worst a year, which amount to about four and eight days respectively, waiting for buses!

Having found the sheer amount of this slack time, I have told myself that I have to plan to do something systematic to make the best use of it. One of the main problems in using slack time systematically is that when I wait for buses that do not come on time, I can never know for sure until when this slack time will continue. If I knew in advance, I would take a seat at the bus station and do some work that requires concentration and creating thinking as I often do when I am already inside the bus.

Having thought of and even tried several things, I have decided to broaden my intellectual horizon by reading introductory ebooks on other academic disciplines that are not related to my research interests and on practical issues. I finished my first ebook during slack time this week. This has also become my first use of my hybrid computer as a tablet on a regular basis. The tablet part of the computer is rather heavy, but this new arrangement seems to be working very well.

I also observed how other people waiting for their bus used their slack time. Few people seemed to be making any clever use of it. This is not surprising to me if I consider that fact that quite a few people in Israel do nothing special even while they are sitting in the bus between cities for more than an hour.