Monday, 21 August 2006
On the road again
Sabrina and I are in Bloomington, IN. She's starting school next week, and they can move into their dorms starting Wednesday, so that's our plan. In the meantime we're having a look around and working our way through the lo-o-o-ong shopping lists of Things To Buy For College.
We took a red-eye Saturday night, so got hardly any sleep that night, and were stumbling around Bloomington Sunday until our hotel was ready at 3:00. There was a, mmm, slight screwup in the hotel, actually. I made hotel reservations along with the plane reservations a couple of months ago, printed everything off, and threw it into a folder. Once we were in Bloomington, Sabrina got the stuff out of the folder and we started looking for the hotel. After studying it for a minute, she said "It says Bloomington IL." Huh? Indeed, the hotel seemed to be in a place called Bloomington, Illinois. Whereas here we are in Bloomington, Indiana.
Well, dang. I called them up -- cell phones are so amazing -- and explained that we were, you know, in the wrong state, so they canceled our reservation, how nice of them. Then came the challenge of finding a place here where we actually are. Back on the cell phone to the mom, who did Expedia magic to find us a place to stay. Not so easy -- it seemed that pretty much everyplace was booked for a long ways around. But she did find us one place for a couple of nights and another for the last night. Crisis averted.
The town of Bloomington isn't particularly big ... the chamber-of-commerce stuff talks about an "11-block downtown area." And it was Sunday, so not real hoppin'. But it's clear that there's an influx of people right about now. All the nice-looking restaurants close to the town center had long waiting times, and there was all sorts of annoyingly slow traffic around the hotels.
This morning I struck up conversation with someone in the hotel lobby who was obviously a college mom and asked her what their move-in plans were. She's got a sophomore who's moving into an apartment. "At twelve o'clock," she said, pointing at her watch. Apparently you get an appointment for your move-in time, local landlords presumably having the wisdom of experience to draw on for the week before school starts.
After a night of actual sleep, I'm rather more ready today to face the various challenges of gettings things ready to go. High on our list is to visit the bookstore, ostensibly to see if we can get any of Sabrina's textbooks. I suspect, though, that I'll emerge with at least one article of clothing emblazoned with the same INDIANA logo that we've seen on about half the population of the town.