Tuesday, April 22, 2008
I don’t really get homesick at college, but I do miss people from back home. Due to the fact that I live in Arkansas, I rarely get to see my family throughout the school year. But this weekend, the entire family (with the exception of my beloved basset hound, Jabba) came up to see me! Both of my parents are English professors at the college in my home town so they were able to get some funding to come to Calvin’s rather famous “Festival of Faith and Writing.” My brother tagged along for the ride, but also did the “Friday’s at Calvin” program while he was up here. The weekend I spent with them consisted of gardens, dining, and lots of smiles.
My parents rolled into the short-term parking lot of NVW honking excitedly in their shiny rented Acura. My brother unfolded himself out of the back-seat (he grows at an super fast rate of about a foot per month.) After a couple rounds of hugs, some of my friends came over to watch the spectacle and I introduced them to my kin. Then we went out to lunch (a treasured perk of the parental visit) at Panera’s and I brought along my laptop to show them some of the films that I have been making. Since Panera’s always calls out your name when they have prepared your food, I usually like to use a silly alias. After a little prodding, I got my dad to put our order under the name “Jebediah.” Unfortunately, we weren’t used to paying attention to the repeating calls of biblical names, and totally missed getting our food moments later. That was fine, because we were able to talk and catch up while the understanding staff of Panera’s made our food order again under “Doug.”
The weekend quickly progressed and I showed my mother and brother around downtown (What rhyming skills!) Later that day, I unfortunately had to miss a lecture by one of my favorite authors, Michael Chabon, because I had my Orientation Leader application. However, it was worth it that night, because I got to dance for hours in my dorm’s banquet which was at Fredrick Mejer’s Gardens. Well, I suppose that the Gardens had a lasting impression on me or maybe it was because I didn’t get to see the butterflies, because I decided to bring my family on a trip back to the Gardens that following day. We saw the African sculpture exhibit, exotic butterflies, over twenty children rolling down green hills, and a behemoth of a sculpted horse that would have even made the Trojan one look small. If my diction wasn’t descriptive enough, I would loved to show you photographs, but unfortunately I totally forgot to bring my camera!
For dinner that night my family went to a majestic resturante downtown called San Chez. I wanted to go because they had a huge neon sign hanging in the window advertising bellydancing, but apparently they only put on shows for special occasions (yet another case of false advertising that does a great injustice to our society.) The place was pricy, but compromised by pleasuring my taste buds.
The weekend came to an end abruptly with my family having to leave early Sunday morning. I was sad (and sleepy) to see them go. My family is creative, loving, and a funny bunch of people, and I consider myself extremely blessed to have them.