The other day I took the afternoon off and we brought my daughter home from college. She was in the lobby saying goodbye to all of the friends that she had made – lots of tears. That’s probably one of the more heartening aspects of her getting out of the house and going to school – she fell in with a group of really good kids and we’re seeing her blossom with being more sociable and independent. She’s going to miss her friends, but I tried to console her with knowing that she has access to a car and can easily take roadtrips on the weekends.
Now she’s home, and our house looks like an explosion of clothing and other assorted items. How can one kid fit so much stuff in a dorm room? You could tell the difference as we were loading the van at school: parents of girls had several people helping, making several trips, and in some cases filling more than one vehicle. Parents of guys waited in their cars outside while their sons came out with a single duffel bag full of dirty laundry. She should be caught up on her sleep by today, so this evening we’re going to have the “you’re back at home now” discussion. Pray for me.
I’ve never been a sandals kind of guy, but a podiatrist told me I needed biking shoes with a harder sole due to the unhealed broken bone in my foot from soccer. Since they are so highly recommended, I was looking at a pair of Keen Newports, but was reluctant about shelling out $100 for what looked like a cross between sandals, sneakers, and water shoes. Since I was in Boscov’s buying Red a Mother’s Day gift, I saw a pair of Skechers Journeymen for half the price and they looked darn near close:I have to say that they’re pretty comfortable. I wore them without socks on a few warmer days and really liked the feel, and then I’ve had them on with wool socks a few times on cooler days, including one ride. I doubt they will hold up as well as the Keens, but I’m not putting on a lot of miles lately anyway.
Son #1 has kept me pretty busy with baseball and being a guitar god. This year he opted to leave the in-field and play out. It was strategic, since the team already had a good mix of in-fielders. So now he’s on the field most of the time, and occassionally gets pulled into first base. He’s also put a lot more time into hitting, with excellent help from his uncle, and is doing much better at the plate. The other night in a game he hit the fence in center field at Redland for a standup double with 2 RBI’s. Had he hit to either right or left, it would have been over the fence…so we were pretty excited.
We also made a deal with him regarding his interest in guitar. Provided he would continue to play in church, we would help him out with equipment. He ended up buying a nice Fender acoustic that we gave him a little bit towards, and he just bought a nice amplifier off of Ebay with his own money from mowing lawns and other chores that he does. But for his birthday we gave him a slightly used Fender Telecaster that I bought from a friend who needed the cash. This past weekend, he and his cohorts played at a Christian Battle of the Bands. They had been practicing for weeks, wrote their own song, and did really well. They couldn’t compete against some of the pro bands that had entered, but for a bunch of 15 year olds, I thought they were great. His nightly practicing is really showing itself.
Now I’ve got to get son#2 set up with playing my old drumset, and we can be a regular Von Trapp family.
Finally, after testing out my camping gear on the Pinchot S24O, I traded up my Big Agnes pad to a Dual Core model. In addition to the insulation, it has a layer of closed cell foam. According to the many reviews I’ve read, it should address the cold coming up off the ground much better. I also bought an Exped Pillow based on this review from the Epicurian Cyclist. I wasn’t all together happy with the ALPS – it seemed too thin, and I got a good price using some discount points from Backcountry. I’m hoping this will all make for a good night’s sleep at Codurus in a week.