Adjusting to my New Environment

This is the end of my first week in our new building at work (well, almost; I was out yesterday to go with Debbi and her parents to the Monterey Bay Aquarium to see their sea otter pup, who is awfully cute and energetic, by the way), and it’s been a lot of little adjustments:

  • As predicted, walking to Infinite Loop to have lunch in the cafeteria has not been a big deal. I leave a few minutes earlier than I used to, and end up finishing lunch quite a bit earlier. Recruiting people to go to lunch with me has been trickier, though: More people have been bringing their lunches or going out for lunch. I see the cafeteria (which is really quite good) as a middle ground between the two. Plus, I get more exercise walking to and from, and I’ve convinced people to take the slightly longer walk back twice so far.
  • Gathering folks for afternoon coffee has been tougher, though. We have a coffee bar in our building, but very little seating, whereas Infinite Loop had the cavernous atrium with large, comfortable couches and many tables besides. Once it warms up and dries out we can have coffee outside, where there is more seating, but this week we tried it in a conference room, which made cow-orker K say she felt like we needed to bring an agenda for coffee, and wasn’t very satisfying. So I’m not sure what the solution will be here. I bet what will ultimately happen is “afternoon coffee less often”.
  • Being in a building with fewer people definitely feels a little disconnected from the rest of the company. I’m also in an office which gets less foot traffic, so it’s more up to me to go chat with people. But I think I’m up to the task. 🙂
  • Still haven’t quite figured out the best route to drive to the building from the freeway – I think I need to come in the back way to avoid the main traffic light (where I used to turn left to go to my old building). At least we have plenty of parking – until the upstairs gets populated, anyway.
  • My office is right next to the bathroom, which is nice, but a long hike from the printer, which is a tad annoying. I’d rather be close to the bathroom, though!

Differences I haven’t taken advantage of yet include being closer to the fitness center, and on the other side of the major road separating us from Infinite Loop, both of which will be convenient when I start biking to work again. And also being a little closer to some stores and restaurants where we could go for lunch. (I hope to get folks to go to Armadillo Willy’s once a month or so.)

Also, it rained like crazy on Wednesday but I didn’t hear it at all through my office’s floor-to-ceiling windows – talk about soundproofing! On the other hand, I can easily hear the truck that just drove by. You can’t have everything.

So the downsides of the move have been little stuff. The upside – in the long run – will be some groups who have been off in yet another building for the last year – which include some of my better friends in the department – moving into our new building too. That’s what I’m really looking forward to, and that will make the move ultimately worthwhile, I think.