Some weird mental switch happens when you go off to college. In high school, I looked forward to being on my own when my parents were gone. Now that I've transitioned to college, I've started to look forward to spending time with parents--even the entire weekend.
November 6-8 was Parents Weekend at Oberlin. Herds of grinning parents roamed the streets with their kids, gawking at buildings, munching on free snacks and enjoying the incredible weather.
I had two major highlights: being with my mom and observing other parents.
It was a lot of fun hanging out with my mom. It felt a lot like when relatives came to visit my family in the Bay Area, except instead of showing the Golden Gate Bridge, Haight-Ashbury, and the seals in the harbor I showed her A. J. Lewis Center, Harkness and our albino squirrels in Tappan. And just like when we gave relatives a tour of the area back home, I took my mom to do things that I would never visit on my own time--instead of Alcatraz prison, we toured the Frank Lloyd Wright house.
My mom's impressions of Oberlin:
- "Everyone is so nice!"
- "It's so bizarre how this is out here in the middle of Ohio." (strong emphasis on "this" and "Ohio")
- "We were socialists in college too--we had a bike-sharing program." (after touring Keep Co-op)
In addition to hanging out with my mom, it was fun to observe families. Around their parents, everyone suddenly seemed to regress to a younger age--it felt almost like that day at summer camp when all the parents come to pick their kids up. It was fascinating, and often hilarious, to see the similarities between kid and parents--where that red hair, that giggle, that large chin or that quirky personality came from.
Between being pampered with free cappuccinos, new socks, and shipments from California (Avocados! Peet's Coffee!), and learning a little more about the hereditary origins of my peers, I had a great time over Parents Weekend.