Leaving Dubuque tomorrow and traveling north to Ypsilanti, Michigan named after some Greek guy. We will be seeing my youngest son, Dr. Jim, his lovely lady Sara and their two children. Sara is giving her dissertation for her PhD in molecular biology at the University of Michigan and we are there to see it happen. Never attended this sort of thing and I am looking forward to learning something new. Her family whom I have not met will be there from Tallahassee, Florida where they had emigrated (immigrated? - what's the difference anyway?) from Persia many years ago and now, of course, the country is known as Iran. They foresaw the horrible impact of the impending Taliban and wanted to raise their children in the states. They chose an area with a climate similar to homeland and there they began their family. All ties to family and friends in the old country ceased with this move and no further contact was made. Sara is a lovely, gentle lady who cannot take her eyes from her children and my austere and always proper son is deeply in love with her.
We will be attending receptions and dinners and having chocolate fondue and wine and meeting with the head of the laboratory and basically it means three days in good clothes. I will need to make conversation with people I do not know but I will come away from this with a better knowledge of the young woman my son has chosen to grow old with. Cowboy Dave has promised me a hotel with pool and workout area.
The car ride is eight hours and I will fill it with books. I'm bringing George Sheehan's Running and Being - Davie Gie has inspired me to reread this sacred volume again. Also, Eat Pray Love - currently a movie starring Julia Child (ugh) but I heard the book was better than the flick so I'll avoid the theatre and stick with the book. And Mayflower by Nathan Philbrook - a volume recommended to my father by his boss, the head of the River Museum. I love long car rides and I can lazily do my reading and occasionally look up to see the bountiful cornfields and greenery at my leisure. Packed my booze, books, meds, toothpaste and a few clothes, too, and I am gone.