So I was chatting with Jen, and she mentioned that she's planning to come home for Columbus Day weekend. that's pretty much what I expected; most students at her school leave town for Columbus Day.
So I asked Becca when she plans to come home, and the response was "I don' t know, I like it her."
And it occurred to me that my daughter is living on the island of Manhattan, an island I visit twice daily during my commute to and from work.
So I asked her out to dinner.
Now, until recently "going out to dinner with Becca" usually involved phrases like "Mom, can we go to Applebee's?"
But things are different now. Becca is a college student and lives in an apartment on the Upper West Side. it didn't feel like taking my daughter out for a bite to eat, it felt like making plans with a friend as we discussed which night was good and where we wanted to eat.
We wound up at Cafe Fiorello, a fine Italian restaurant. From our al fresco table we could look across the street to Lincoln Center. We shared an order of fried shrimp and calamari, Becca had filet mignon (she took half of it home for lunch the next day) and I had an excellent veal marsala and a glass of a very nice chardonnay.
And we had a long chat about what's going on in her life, how much she's loving colege and enjoying living in NYC, what classes she likes and what she's planning to study next semester (her school has a heavy-duty core curriculum, which doesn't leave much time for electives). She seems to be getting along with her room mate and apartment mates -- there are minor issues, such as the level of cleanliness in the apartment -- my daughter doens't like to see dirty dishes left in the sink, especially dishes that belong to her but were used by another girl). but for the most part, she's happy with her apartment mates, happy with her curriculum, happy with her decision to enroll at this school.
She had a fleeting moment of regret -- her campus is in Manhattan and looks like everything else in that borough, very urban and modern, and when she visited the school's main campus (in one of the outer boroughs) and saw a much more traditionally collegiate atmosphere, she briefly wondered if she made the right decision to enroll at the sattelite campus, but that feeling passed quickly because she truly loves to be in the heart of the city.
After dinner we walked over to the local grocery store (you simply cannot call it a "supermarket" in Manhattan!) and she stocked up on a few essentials. She was limited to what she and I could carry, of course. (She's planning to come home for part of Columbus Day weekend, and the plan includes a trip to a real supermaket followed by a car ride back to her dorm.) It is, after all, a mother's job to make sure that her daughter has enough to eat -- considering how "awful' the campus cafeteria is.
I took my daughter home to her dorm. And then, I went home.
Wow, what a powerful statement. My baby does not live with me anymore.
cross posted at Songbird's Crazy World