Sunday, July 29, 2012

Going to College Orientation

 I have two sons, and the youngest will move 470 miles south to start college on September 21.  This week was his orientation.  We drove down with him and his girlfriend.  They have been a couple for 14 months and are going together to college.  Their youth worries me, but I adore both of them and think they have a pretty clear view on where they want to be four years from now.  They had both read a lot about their future home, but were still quite shocked at the actual campus.  Signing up for a university with a larger population than out whole county, almost double in fact, did not lead them to expect that their first entrance to the campus would feel more like driving through a Wyoming prairie and viewing the skeletal remains of a ranch with cattle and deer scattered though the stone fireplaces and derelict barns.

We left Crescent City in the fog

 I love Tiburon so we had to stop for a quick peek at Blackie's Meadow
We didn't realize until we neared Ukiah that the air con was broken in my van, so the trip was all windows down and sweaty but fun.

Then we got into the fog again at San Francisco.
The City of San Francisco calls itself Northern California, but we have to drive south for seven hours to get there from here. I love that city so much but am always glad I don't have to deal with their traffic on a daily basis. From there south to San Jose we had 10 mile an hour or stopped for EVER! but I had people I adore with me so it was still fun.

 First setting foot on the campus was strange, like where exactly is this University?

 Cowell College building

 The first night was a meet and greet and pizza night and my two are just at the center of the picture by "Sammy The Banana Slug" school mascot

 on campus

beyond the grassy ranch there is a redwood forest and most of the buildings are hidden within the trees. Except for a distant view of sea and town you'd never guess there was Santa Cruz there at all

 In Santa Cruz there is an amusement park on the beach boardwalk and an adorable city of beautiful homes and tiny ethnic cafe's and surfing and art and so much for them to explore

 with this to tempt them away from homework, and the killer classes their advisor put them in, (Advanced Calculus and Advanced Physics and their own college's writing seminar) it is a good thing the campus is a bit removed and the freshman can't have their cars.  The public buses are easy to use however.

Santa Cruz has three classes each quarter, ONLY THREE, but PE is not required or counted as a credit so they can still take that for fun and recreation.  And each program graduates the classes with exactly the credits you get taking these 9 classes a year for four years.

I know, we have sea lions here, but this snuggly bunch on the Santa Cruz pier made me wish I could still hold these young pups close like this a bit longer.

 After orientation, we stopped in San Jose to play at the water park for the afternoon on our return trip.

 and a brief stop in San Francisco for some giant strawberries and donuts on a stick on Pier 39
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