The drive to Connecticut was ok, once we got on the road. Waze took us up the NJ Turnpike, to the George Washington Bridge, then Henry Hudson Parkway (which is gorgeous) then some other road up to the Merritt Parkway, which has got to be one of the prettiest roads in America. Also, CT has a thing for keeping all of their Department of Transportation employees working. We had an earlier tour at Trinity in Hartford, CT (that's near where jimgon works, I think) and there was no aircon in the buildings at all.
Later in the day, I got heatsick while on a two plus hour tour of UMass, which is not a small, leafy campus sadly enough. I had problems with my feet swelling in the heat (I think heat plus walking so much) and had to run errands at a strip mall outside of Amherst to get new shoes, gatorade and dinner from Whole Foods. The only good thing was that the hotel was right near by. I was upset that LO and I couldn't find the energy to explore downtown Amherst more, but LO crashed because of the heat too.
Score for first day: 0, I didn't like Trinity and LO did not like UMass. And the heat.
The next day we woke up and had to be in Boston by 10am for a session at Northeastern. So we booked it out of foggy Amherst, and then drove on the Massachusetts Turnpike, which is a turnpike with hills and trucks that go by too fast on the hills. And drivers who pass on the right. Your drivers suck Massachusetts. Now, having driven through NY on the George Washington Bridge the previous day, where I had to merge through 3 lanes of traffic to get to where I needed to go was not as bad as Massachusetts traffic near Boston. I had some moron kid nearly ram into me trying to cross traffic near a traffic merge. (He apparently needed to get to Cambridge badly.) The traffic merges were bad and the lack of turn signals people...c'mon, C'MON.
The Northeastern info session and tour was slick and we sat through it halfheartedly as it's a reach school. (According to the admissions software, she's on the cusp as previous kids from her school did get admitted with her gpa/scores.) The tour again was longer than I expected even with the grad student who gave zero fucks giving it, it was hot and the new shoes were bothering me. After seeing that school, we decided to ditch the car near the hotel and head up to BU as there is no parking at BU. It was a good choice. We figured out the T (even though we ended up walking around the block to get to Copely station) and went on up. We couldn't grab a tour as the students had just returned to campus as it was a mad house, so we chilled for a bit on campus and waited for LO's appointment with a sports coach. We then walked over the bridge and were treated to an awesome view of Boston. So, long story short, LO is being recruited for a sports team with no hope of a scholarship or of any help other than the financial aid office giving LOs application an early review. (Which actually may help us in the long run, so...) LO might be eligible for an unofficial tour with a team member later in the year, so we decided that we'll come back to campus if she gets accepted.
Score: 2; liked both schools, crossing fingers for both. Dinner at a sushi place in Back Bay, which was great until LO got up to leave and spilled water all over me in front of everyone.
Next day we reserved for driving over to Boston College, but by this point LO didn't want to see another reach school. Also, admissions from her high school are very competitive as it's a school that Philly Catholic kids like going to. So we bailed and drove up to Vermont, through New Hampshire and up on I-89. At one point we passed by Bunker Hill Community College, and I said to LO, "There's the college that was in that movie." Me: "Oh you know that movie with Ben Affleck and Matt Damon." LO: "What?"
After a brief stopover at Ben & Jerry's, we got to Burlington. Which was the first time in nearly 12 years since I've been there. Not that much has changed. It still looked pretty much the same. We stayed at the hotel right by the lake, and it was so worth it for the view. LO and I just sat in our room for a few hours and looked outside and bickered at each other. We then walked up to the main shopping/restaurant area, looked around and grabbed dinner. Kind of surprising to me, LO didn't really remember that much about the area. She kept on asking if we could do touristy things and I would say something like "Oh don't you remember that? you used to love being there."
The next day, we toured UVM on a bright sunny day. (I forgot how differently the sun shines up there, it was so weird to notice.) UVM really packed in the info session as there were a number of families who took advantage of the labor day weekend to go up to VT and we got a smart personable kid who did the tour for us. It's a safety school for LO (she's applying Early Action so she can get her ducks in a row), and she'd do well there, but she was like, "It's so big." I promised I would get her a bike. LO wanted to stay in town to do touristy things and she even wanted to see the old house, but I had to remind her we had to go back because she had tickets to a music festival the next day. It was an 8+ hour drive back.
Score: 1, plus all of the Vermont swag (t-shirts, food, etc.) we overdid. We're talking about going back up later this fall perhaps.
Prologue: My feet were fine after a day of not walking in the heat.
Sidenote: Over the summer I got in touch with our former neighbor in VT and told them we were coming up. The wife seemed excited. Last week, when I was finally able to confirm dates and offered to drive up to their place, they went quiet. No idea what happened there. ¯_(ツ)_/¯
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