Tuesday May 23    

    On May 21, 1861, Richmond, Virginia became the official capital of the Confederate States of America. Two hundred forty-five years later, Brittany Kwait would transfer her capital to Richmond, Virginia. Move-in went smoothly once we figured out where I was to live and how to get there (not necessarily in that order). By the end of the night I had most of my stuff unpacked and organized and had been given a tour of the large & stunning campus by the one of my three eventual roommates to have moved in. Exhausted from weeks and weeks of little sleep, I decided to peruse my pilfered “Guide to Richmond” and turn in prematurely (for me) so I could swell with vim & vigor my first day.
      Monday morning put the “tics” in “logistics”. Let’s just say I took the scenic route to work, walking around a campus lake that could submerge Fordham’s Manhattan campus. Enervated (so much for vim -n- vigor!), I entered Jepson Hall, home to the Math & Computer Science department where I would be working, and saw a woman who looked vaguely familiar. We exchanged back-casted glances.
      Later I asked how she knew it was me.
      “There aren’t too many women I’ve never seen before on our floor”.
      Dr. Call-Me-Kelly (and I will) Shaw introduced me to some of the other faculty members in the department and gave me a tour of Jepson and the University of Richmond campus. En route we found Yuri, a UR junior also conducting research with Kelly this summer. The two of them really helped to anchor me. I received a username and password for the UR network and Dr-Penguin server as well as ID and library cards.
      After returning from lunch in the city, Kelly & I finally had a chance to discuss the project. I left her office heavy with  zest for my summer research and a few pounds of literature. I spent Monday night and Tuesday helping one roommate move in and reading about databases and their architecture; naturally, these are both required courses that I registered for next semester.
     Yuri and I trekked through the woods to a local shopping center MapQuest claimed was almost 2 miles away. No distance too far for forgotten coffee filters, I say.


Wednesday May 24

      Kelly and I discussed the readings and how my DMP work will fit into a larger project to increase single-chip multiprocessor efficiency by eliminating cache-to-cache transfers. I left her office with more papers to read about chip multiprocessors (CMPs). I was also permitted access to a PostgreSQL, and was linked to a couple of online books on how to read and manipulate the TPC database.
      In the evening, there was a screening of A Beautiful Mind for all the Research Associates (that’s me!) as a social kickoff for the summer, complete with free & delicious Chinese food, which I had never seen in large catering tins before.


Thursday May 25

      Read the new papers and followed up on a few of their citations. Typed up a few pages about what I had gleaned from the readings that could prove relevant to the project and some quick cache facts.
      It's almost like summer camp, minus the food fights and glitter glue: woods, humidity, concrete slab for a bed, bugs that suck, bite, and sting, surprise, fly, and scurry (oh my!), and great people who as far as I'll know will never age, extant only in memories and images—that's just the way things go....


Friday May 26 – Monday May 29

      Kelly had to attend a meeting and left me to experiment with PostgreSQL, but I can’t seem to get it loaded! By Monday I learned that the omnipotent ‘psql’ file had been deleted when the OS was reinstalled a few weeks ago. Kelly will “talk” to a system administrator tomorrow and try to get the whole thing settled & sorted soon so I don’t miss out on some SQL fun, following along with the snake-oil book salesmen scenario played out in the online text Practical PostgreSQL.
      Over the weekend I began my website design. I considered putting up a transient one in basic HTML so yinz guys could get started viewing my log, pictures n’at, but nawh. I’d rather wait and consolidate the funds for one awesome site launch party. Heh.
      Have I mentioned that Yuri lives next door to me? Well, thanks to the culinary and cinematic competence of him and his roommate Mark, I ate very well and have managed to finally start nicking away at my perennially expanding list of must-see movies. Yesterday was Memorial Day and better weather could not have been had. I came in early to work and read a paper I chose from the references of others that proved very pertinent. Liz called me around 2 o’clock to tell me that We [Liz, Yuri, me, Mark, & (later) some of Mark’s friends] were going to picnic at Pony Pastures [pictures!] on the James River. The scene resembled a completed jigsaw puzzle, it was quite picturesque. Being a faultless Memorial Day, finding a place to park was difficult (for Virginians, anyway) and Mark understandably chose the path most taken, parking along the side of the narrow road, half in the shrubs. As We walked towards the rocks, a police car rolled closer and began to bullhorn that if the “illegally parked cars” were not moved they would be towed. Poor Mark. He told us to go on without him while he would seek out another place to stow his Nissan. Mark returned nearly an hour later, as cars were being removed like slices of American cheese from the package at a hamburger joint. Some sweaty shirtless, middle-aged smoking man let Mark park outside of his house -- “They” had closed off the parking lot.