2018 – Silicon Valley, 42 and programming (part I)

Hi friends, it’s been another year & time to (finally) write an update on what’s keeping me busy! =)

Super-brief summary:

I got addicted to programming and am landing my next career in software engineering.

Brief summary:

  • January: I took a back-country split-boarding course with NOLS in Wyoming
  • February: I briefly moved to Toronto, obtained my permanent resident card while making some long-overdue progress in drawing and painting before taking a short touristy trip in Abu Dhabi and London
  • March – October: I came to Silicon Valley in response to an invitation from a French programming school named 42, initially I intended to stay for one month, solve some puzzles and pick up some basics of coding (which I always thought might be fun but never actually managed to take the time to learn). This last part turned out to be highly addictive and before I knew it, I have programmed non-stop till the end of the year and found myself interviewing as software engineer at various tech companies.
  • November – December: Stayed for 6 weeks in France and Ukraine to visit other campuses of 42, collaborated with local students and more level-ing up kicked off the interview process for my next career.

Due to the different nature of topics, I’ll spilt the post into two parts: Part I contains various bits of random trips/things I do till I started programming and Part II describes some programing projects and how I got intensely interested in the field.

So let’s start by rewinding time to January 2018:

Split-boarding with NOLS:

I took a 14-day backcountry split-boarding course with NOLS which includes a 10-day expedition into the mountains of Wyoming (i.e. drag a sled containing all gears, food, cooking equipment; built quinzhee to live in etc.). Was a lot of work but an extremely rewarding experience, learned a lot about rations, avalanches, cold injury, how to crafting snow into useful structures… Now I feel ready to head into the wildness even in the winter.

…and of course there’s the snowboarding part where we made marks on lots and lots of untouched powder!

Some drawing and painting in Toronto:

I got back to Toronto late January to finish some logistics and immigration paperwork (was planning to work in Toronto for a few years, although that plan didn’t end up happening). While in the city I signed up with a local atelier managed to do some drawing and painting there (the above are mostly my works from a Sargent workshop in which we learned to reproduce the technique used by John Singer Sargent, I also did some Bargue drawing and life portraits)

Abu Dhabi & London:

In mid February I went to UAE for the first time to see a friend and visit the Louvre of Abu Dhabi and the most expensive painting ever sold. Stopped by London for a week to catch some shows, museums and good food, before flying to California for what I thought was a one-month intensive programming camp… (continue in Part II)

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