I've apologized for inconsistent posting before, and here we are. I'm just going to stop with the apologies... I think I may have indicated in the past that I enjoyed working at the pizzeria the most out of all the one-week jobs. We have a “problem” now, because that is no longer the case. I could easily say the same thing about my time with Coda Coffee this past week. That it was my best experience. And though I've told you nothing about the job I'm in right now, I really like it too. I'm conflicted!
I've always been hesitant to identify favorites, and this is why. So, forget what I “had” said. This is not to say that I will not have a favorite in two weeks, just that I'm taking recanting a statement. Simply remember that once upon a time, Michelle was against coffee. Then she did that one-week job thing, and now she drinks coffee.
Change is real, and change can be good. YAY! :)
My time with Coda was pretty routine, but no less stimulating. Wednesday through Friday, Tim and Jessica would pick me up around 7:45am as usual, and I'd head straight to the warehouse and get to work. I spent the rest of my warehouse hours on one order, Bane's project, that required bagging and packaging approximately 500 16oz bags of coffee beans of different varieties, whole bean and ground. The order took a long while, but I was happy that we finished it before the 2pm deadline on Friday. I seriously appreciate having a big task and a goal that I need to reach.
Embarrassingly, I ate out every day at lunch time. Brittany and Dean, sweet as they were, opened their pantry and refrigerator up to me for whatever I needed, but I always ended up eating the lunch I packed for breakfast. Marciano, Trestin, and I were then able to spend time together every day at noon. Workdays ended at 5pm, after which Tim and Jessica would take me home, and I'd wind down with a George Foreman Grill creation and some Lifetime drama. Last week had to be the most television I've watched since this beginning of all this.
It was on Thursday that I had that cupping experience that I talked about before. The cupping I did is not to be confused with the traditional method of Chinese medicine, and a video of it can be seen here:
This visual will explain it better than any words of mine could.
Friday was significantly slow, and as usual, to remain useful, I found a huge pile of dishes to clean. At the end of my last day, I forced everyone at Coda to take pictures, and I took home some coffee mugs and beans for Brittany and Dean! I was overjoyed at the chance to give back to them since they had helped me out so much.
As I had been staying in watching television, Brittany and Dean had had their own engagements to attend every evening. On my last night, they stayed in and Dean made us dinner :) Chicken fingers, fries, and broccoli - SCRUMPTIOUS. We watched When Harry Met Sally (please don't yell at me), my first time to see the movie, and then we went to bed.
On Saturday, I stayed in couch late and did some work on the computer. I then decided to go to the coffee bar around the corner for a cup and a bagel. I wanted to work on distinguishing tastes and aroma, put my coffee knowledge to work. :) I did some laundry, packed, and got some dinner before going out on the road. Dean packed me a nice little snack bag for the traveling, and I left Denver on the Greyhound, unlike the way I had arrived.
What did you dislike about the job and why?
There was very little I disliked about my time with Coda, except for two things.
- There were times where I felt I wasn't needed in the warehouse, when things were slow. While I did find dishes to clean, something I always love doing, I wish I knew enough to be able to help the guys out all the time, even in the tiniest way.
- There wasn't much overlap with job duties, and I think that would get to me after some time. When I was bagging beans, a few of the guys would walk by and joke with me: “You getting tired of that yet?” As I've said before regarding situations that most would find severely boring, I was completely fine with what I was doing, but I was only there for a week. I definitely don't want to be in a situation where someone who's been in the business for awhile comes up to me and asks me if I hate what I'm doing yet, because if I don't, I will soon. That's not too encouraging!
What did you like about the job and why?
I didn't like, I loved.
I loved the people. Everyone was relaxed from the beginning, mirroring the exact work atmosphere I had been hoping for and work the best in. Moreover, while everyone was generally calm, they worked hard. That spoke to me. The staff was also very real. When people were feeling hyperactive, they acted hyperactive. When people were feeling angry, they acted angry. And they expressed all those emotions in a sufficient amount of time. No dramatics. No excess. No hiding. That was really cool. Okay, I justttt realized that I worked with males the entire week. I don't want to say that this is a factor in the people-loving / work atmosphere but...your call.
I loved the passion. Tommy and Tim know their coffee, and they get excited about it. When Tim and I did deliveries on Tuesday, it was clear that his customers really respected him and fed off of his energy and dedication to making them happy. There were moments where I saw myself owning a coffee company, though that will most likely never happen. But that's how infectious Tim is! Tim is not only passionate about his profession, but he was also passionate about making sure he was doing all he could to make sure I got the most I could out of Coda Coffee with the Program. I truly believe he did just that.
I loved the family feel. Coda Coffee staff is a small but diverse group. There are a lot of different personalities within it, but the thing that really caught my attention was how comfortable everyone felt being themselves. I found out later it was because the staff is really close. There were many times where someone would bring up how Tommy and Tim treat their staff like adults, and how they take care of them as if they were their blood. About 90% of Coda staff knew not one thing about coffee before they came to the company. Many of them indicated that they fell in love with the industry not just because they needed the knowledge for the job, but also because the work environment made the learning process attractive and easy. Wherever I work, I want my experience to be like this. Hard but easy. You feel me?
What lessons did you learn from work at a wholesale coffee roaster / Week 5?
- It's okay to let others take care of you. As you'll find out later, I haven't REALLY learned this lesson. But I am learning it. Brittany and Dean were so so so nice to me. Besides the fact that they let me sleep at their place only a month after they moved in themselves (from Texas, mind you), they let me watch their television for as long as I wanted. They urged me to eat as much of their food as I wanted. They even trusted me to stay in their house alone, and left me a key just in case I wanted to go wherever I wanted. They wouldn't let me do anything to help them, and I didn't understand it. I'm still trying to. But this is the thing. If I were them, I would do the same thing for another if I could. In a heartbeat. So why can't I trust others to love on me? Someone help me answer this.
- REALLY try something and immerse yourself in it before you write it off completely. See Post: Dear Coffee: Friends ?
- Don't be ashamed. For anything. For anyone. In addition to their big hearts, I was amazed at Brittany and Dean's unashamed and consistent indulgence in unhealthy foods. Sour Patch kids, cupcakes, Hershey's kisses, graham crackers, Pringles, oven fries, chicken fingers. I should add that they work out, look like very fit people, and eat other stuff, but I was still just amazed. I feel as if it's almost customary in this day and age to provide some reasoning to those around us whenever we eat that ice cream late at night for the fourth night in a row. We feel guilty because we want others to know that our likelihood of gaining excessive amounts of weight is low, or if it happens, it won't be due to our poor eating habits. But who cares? Who cares. I'm going to eat more ice cream right now. Thank you, Brittany. Thank you, Dean. You've given me confidence to eat that second chocolate chip cookie for BREAKFAST.
(But yikes! Seriously, after my pizza week and this, I need to get my body rightttttt! Tubby Michelle, is that you?)
Would you do this again, as a more-than-one-week job?
To Tommy, to Tim. To Jessica, To Laura. To Brian, To Todd. To Issac, To Seok. To Adam, To Trestin. To Bane, To Marciano. To anyone I missed because it's probable. If I liked favorites, you might have been one of mine. Thanks for being so authentic, informative, chill, and for bringing a new beverage into my life. What a great gift you've given. Thanks again.
Do what you do.
This would be an example:
P.S. No, "Teqnique" is not a word.