What I Did for Summer Vacation, et La Rentrée
Last Thursday, I drove Ryan to West Virginia University and dropped him off at college. It was a surprisingly easy experience. I’m not the type of parent to decorate my kid’s dorm room or require a dinner date on move-in day. Basically, I carried his shit up 4 flights of stairs, made his bed, and said, “Remember this, boy. You need straight A’s this semester to get into the full nursing program here. If that doesn’t happen, you’re transferring to Marymount.”
Then I hightailed it out of Morgantown.
To be honest, Ryan wouldn’t need to transfer to Marymount. He could attend Roxborough Memorial Hospital School of Nursing next year, and that wouldn’t be a bad thing. I’m not telling him that, of course. Not yet, anyway.
Last night (the day before classes started), WVU moved all of Ryan’s classes online, with some in-person components. The confusion that ensued with these last-minute changes was insane. I have been on the phone for literally hours with my son since this time yesterday, not to mention the endless text messages.
In case you didn’t know, I’m a hands-off mother whose own parents dropped me off at college and couldn't have cared less about my experience until they received my report card. This is what I wanted for my son. Then Coronavirus happened.
Parents, regardless of how old your children are, I feel your pain.
In the meantime, it’s been a minute since my last update. So, here’s what I’ve done with my Summer Vacation in these COVID times.
The Hubs and I (and alternating groups of our genetic offspring) have spent several long weekends, as well as some longer weeks, at our properties in upstate New York. We’ve hiked, canoed, swam in lakes, jumped off cliffs, waterskied, suntanned (insert laughy-face emoji here), and chased the dog through acres and acres of fields and woods.
Ryan flew on an airplane during these Coronavirus times to visit his Airman brother, Blaise in Florida. Blaise is on a rapid deployment list and therefore quarantined every other week, so they mostly played video games. But they reconnected, and that’s what matters.
The Hubs and I enjoyed camping on more than one occasion. As the summer progressed, we amassed quite a collection of outdoor gear, including a separate tent that acts as a living/entertainment area. Oh, and a mini fridge.
I cultivated a tomato garden in my backyard. I organized shelves, pantries, and closets. And you guys, I unpacked storage boxes from when we moved to France – in 2013! – and finally put the good china back into my empty china cabinet. (That was a project, trust me.)
In this moment, I’m supposed to be in Portugal, on my way to the south of Spain, and then off to Croatia. Obvs, I’m not in any of those places. That’s OK. I’ve had like 6 months to get over it, and so have you, and you, and you. Every New Years Day for the past 5 years, I’ve said to The Hubs, “This is the Year of the Great Slow Down.” In 2020, we actually. slowed. down.
Now, we’re planning the wedding of The Hubs’ oldest son and his beautiful fiancé, to take place in our very own backyard in just a few weeks. It will be held outdoors with less than 50 guests, in accordance with PA Governor Wolf’s COVID-19 rules, regulations, and guidelines. Will our guests catch Coronavirus? If they do, will they be symptomatic? Asymptomatic? We are taking every possible precaution. Beyond that, frankly, I don’t give a crap. Sometimes, weddings gotta happen.
La Rentrée literally translates to reentering home. It’s a term the French use when everyone returns from vacation, gets back to work, and sends their children back to school.
Bon Rentrée, les tous!