TIY Day Two — Focus Endeavor

Every once in a while, a reflective coat encompassing my retina (all those hours invested in my laptop), I might catch this scent. It’s not a sour smell, it isn’t really pleasant either. I’ll lose focus, just for a second and glance around. No one is particularly close to me… There is always a perpetrator and unfortunately this one belongs to my palms. I’ll get up, wash, return with hands fresh and because of the soap, flowery smelling palms. Sometimes it’s the simple things like that.

TJ keeps us busy or maybe it seems that way because it is day two. The information that he has begun teaching us is like my love for a hoagie. I’ll get as much as I can but at some point I just can’t keep eating (unless you know me, then you know this analogy isn’t true). Sometimes the information is so dense, rich and compact processing all of it encourages a loss of focus. Like noticing the fragrance of my palms. I’m not discouraged, day two is much better than day one.

Daniel (Dan for short) hasn’t been in Atlanta for a week. On the corner of Pryor St. and MLK Dr. is this Jamaican food joint, Jamrocks, he and I happened to have the same idea for lunch. I needed something inexpensive and authentic, there is also a line for lunch — a great sign for anyone appraising a new restaurant. Dan has greenish/gray eyes (I didn’t look too closely), curly hair like a greek statue and pointed features on his rather soft looking face. Maybe the most easy thing to notice about Dan is how he articulates. No stutters, no long drawn out “Uhhhs” or long pauses. He processes what you communicate and responds in acute fashion. Which is great when I have more constantly picked his brain about our work.

Standing in line waiting to order I asked,

“Hey, how long have you been in Atlanta?”

I suppose that just seems to be my “go to” question these days.

“Five days.”

“What! No way! How do you like it here so far?”

He shrugged but he grinned too. He was enjoying himself, staying with his sister and her husband until the end of school.

“I came from Boston.” he told me.

He was looking for a change and was happy to be at TIY. Had already gotten a bit of a head start with some antiquity in a course for “C”. Not everyone starts school equal but that just means another perspective on the work we do was available. TJ isn’t so strict that he expects the work to be just like his (after all, that isn’t what coding is about). As long as we can explain, constructively, what we program we have flexibility.

“I love my sister and our family, we’re really close.” He told me while I was waiting on my Jerk Chicken, he was getting a bit impatient for the Jerk Chicken Sandwich he ordered. For once someone may have been more hungry than me.

“I’m pretty lucky to have them.”

We brought our lunch back to what I’ve deemed the “Sunroom”. Munched down, had a few laughs, shared a bad joke (I did anyway) and then back to work. Lecture was fairly long today but after lunch my palms smelled like that spicy chicken. I waited a bit before applying the floral aroma all over again.

The class make up, my peers, is the strangest I’ve ever seen. TJ isn’t excluded from this pairing either. We have…

A Lawyer

A Teacher, who taught/still teaches english in Bejing

Two Very Smart siblings, the brother being more shy. They’re young and homeschooled.

Two Average FriendlyBros”, and I say “average” as in, average so far.

Dan

Myself, you can come to your own conclusions.

There is a really unique mix of diversity here. I’ve been peeking around the other classes too, which seem to display a similar, unique, bond. All of us brought together because of our interest in code, no matter what language we happen to be learning. We’re all learning together in this big think tank. Kind of like high school, for some of you college but we could build a pillow fort and I doubt there would be any objections from anyone.

“Your code looks like you’re dyslexic.”

Thanks Dan.