A couple of months ago, I was stressed. Seriously so worried about money and paying the bills, and I made the hard decision that I was going to have to miss my sister Erin’s college graduation from the University of New Haven in Connecticut.
But then, miracles and some hard work and some luck all joined forces and the next thing I knew, I was buying a plane ticket and making hotel reservations and suddenly it was this past weekend and now my little sister, the youngest of us all, is a college graduate.
The adventure began Thursday afternoon with a cross country flight from LAX to JFK. It occurred to me that I had never been on a plane with my dad before, but there I was, sitting right next to him for six hours or so. I honestly can’t even remember the last time I sat next to someone I know on a plane.
Anyways, we arrived at JFK a little before midnight, found the car rental place, got our stylin’ minivan that I forgot to memorialize on camera, and we were off to Connecticut. I don’t remember much of the drive because I fell asleep. Therefore, the drive was SUPER quick and didn’t feel two hours long AT ALL.
On Friday, we all slept in super late then went and met up with Erin and her boyfriend, Matt, and a couple of their friends for brunch. We checked out her dorm and all the packing she still had to do, and Erin took us on a tour of her campus, and then we might have done something else, but I don’t remember what. I just remember that later I checked into my own room at the hotel (I crashed on the sofa bed in my step-mom’s room the night we arrived) and took a nap. A blissful, glorious nap.
And then there was some super yummy pizza. And bed. My glorious tempurpedic bed that made me so happy I wanted to stuff it in my suitcase and bring it home.
On Saturday, we met up with my step-mom’s cousin, who gave us a tour of her gorgeous house and then took us over to Yale. And whaddya know?? I’ve got some pictures!
For instance, here’s the library:
Yeah, and then there was this building:
And the dorms are beautiful.
I can picture few other places more perfect for a graduation ceremony.
We left Yale and got some grub at Shake Shack. Which is amazing. Seriously, that stuff is SOOOOO good. I can’t wait until the new location opens in LA!
After that, Erin and her friends had to get ready for their Commencement Ball that night. My brother, Stephen, was supposed to go, but he wasn’t feeling well and bowed out. We sent them off to the ball, then got some dinner and called it an early night because we were going to have to leave early the next morning to get to the graduation venue.
And then, graduation morning dawned early. Like, so, so early.
We zoomed off to the theater some 30 minutes away from our hotel, found Erin, and started snapping lots of pictures. Most of these won’t mean anything to you, but here are a few:
After graduation, we hung out for a bit, I took another nap (wonderful!) and then we went to dinner with Matt and his family. It was a lot of fun to hang out with my sister’s presumed future in-laws. They’re really great people.
When dinner was done, it was time for my trek home to begin. My flight wasn’t until 8am the next morning, but I had to get from New Haven, Connecticut to JFK by myself. I hadn’t gotten a hotel room for that night because I didn’t know what the plan was going to be, when dinner would be finished, etc. So I decided to take the train down to Grand Central, spend the night in the station, and then catch the subway out to the airport in the morning.
Did you know that Grand Central Terminal closes at 2am?
Well, now you do.
I got kicked out of the train station in the middle of the night. The subways weren’t running from there, so that wasn’t an option, and I certainly wasn’t going to wander the streets for three hours. So I hailed a cab and got a ride to the airport.
The cabbie was super nice. He pointed out the United Nations building, which I hadn’t seen on my previous trips to New York, which add up to a total of about 19 hours. He also pointed out the Freedom Tower, which is gorgeous all lit up.
We got to the airport, and I got checked in for my flight and I waited and waited for the plane and fell asleep at the gate and then finally got on the plane and fell asleep again, but woke up an hour in and couldn’t sleep anymore after that so it was basically the LONGEST FLIGHT EVER.
But you know what?
Totally worth it.
I got to see my sister graduate.
And I couldn’t be more proud.