Getting up to Speed
In college I would have nightmares where I was in my old high school. I dreamed that I was most of the way done the year and I hadn’t done any work.
I felt like a failure each time I woke from one of those dreams. They continued until my graduation from Selkirk College in the Spring, 2018. At some point I realized that I was creating that feeling of being behind in my work. In completing my diploma I broke the nightmare of time running out. Completing this leg of the journey gave me confidence and hope to enroll in a BA and I am now passionate about community health.
I can remember in College how coffee was a ritual before class. It didn’t matter that it was Van Houtte, or that the cafe served the most delicious homemade soups every day, the life on campus tasted different than the one at a distance. I’ve asked myself where to find a local hangout that brings me in touch with campus life. Not having peers in my program live nearby presents a challenge.
Why I love coffee
The first sip of coffee is like entering a space where the work comes into central focus in a massive way. Getting up to speed is a mindset. Coffee doesn’t get me there, I’m already there. Coffee just wakes me up and gets the blood into my brain.
Living in Nelson has its privileges. There are in fact two coffee roasters and LOTS of places to get good coffee. You could say it’s really a coffee kind of town. I admit to having my favorite places to study. The glass patio of Empire Coffee, in the afternoon, with the sun coming down over the water. Invariably though I sit at home at my desk with my coffee press, usually with beans roasted by my good friends at Number 6 Coffee.
When I go out I take some essential items:
- Assignment descriptions and printed readings
- Pens and a highlighter
- Notepad or journal
- Sometimes a book
I save all my work on a cloud so that I can sit at my desktop later and revise my ideas. The time away from home makes for an interactive life, as others come for their own reasons. I like engaging others who are interested in what I am learning and hear what they think. Dialogue grounds meaning into ideas. As ideas are shared a new perspective can emerge from the discussion. There are opportunities to share in these common spaces. My idea is to create a way whereby my life supports my education through interactive experience and through community engagement. More to come on that I’m sure!
When you are overstimulated on coffee and that next cup doesn’t seem to give you any more energy, squeezing the last drops of neurotransmitter juice into those final pages, nothing else seems to matter. Exhausted, we get back up, and somehow overcome the time crunch – we get by somehow!
At some point the body and the mind need rest. Better than the stimulation of coffee, by far, is the reward of academic excellence.
Coffee is the chariot that takes me across the landscape into the campus life, where ordinary coffee shops become my classrooms.