Proficiency in Pirates

Last Saturday, we sacrificed our errand and housecleaning day to visit a college.

My son was invited to interview for the Presidential Scholarship and participate in various sessions and a tour.  I saw it as a great opportunity to see the college at its best, because in our in-house rankings, this college was at number three on the short list.  However, it’s also the one closest to our home town, so I wanted it to continue to be in the running.

We arrived early, and like our normal everyday life, didn’t have a real grasp of the obvious, so we didn’t see or follow the professionally  made signs that directed us to the Student Union.  Instead, we went to the building in which we thought the interviews would be held, and found small hand-lettered signs there. That resulted in us entering the Union from another door and totally missing out on the helpful reception desk, shuttle stop and piles of people waiting to spring into action to assist us with our day.  However, we still found the registration table and the interview room and all was well.

A sneaky thing happened while we were there.  After the interview (which the students did while parents munched lemon bars and made polite conversation with other parents) we decided to attend a colloquium on Pirates.  You heard me, it was a 300 level class on pirates.  One could take this semester long class – on pirates – for credit.  I was torn between thinking that college classes are much cooler than I remembered, to thinking about how my hard-earned dollars were paying for proficiency in pirates and how would one apply this knowledge to everyday life on a post-college basis.

We did a shuttle tour and a quick walking tour of the two “scholar houses” that are reserved for priority students.  I saw the dorm suites  as small and wondered how in the world my only child would take to sharing a bedroom with another student and a “living room” and bathroom with three other students.  My son saw the suites as…..freedom.  Strange how a collection of rooms can mean something so different to two people.

So, here we are at the first weekend of February.  We are trying to plan a visit to the third (and most distant) college and a revisit to the first college to view the housing.  Our deadline for accepting scholarships is looming, so we need to get our visits completed and have a sit-down at the kitchen table to make a decision.  With two visits down, I asked my son what his determining factor would be selecting his future alma mater.  He said it would be the one with the most scholarships and students he knows.

So, money and friends – kind of like a pirate.