Monday and Tuesday were Evan’s appointed days to go to the University of Arkansas campus and attend a freshman orientation and register for classes.  Unlike the days when I was there, most students had parents with them.

This was specifically for students in the honors college so the demographics may have been a little abnormal but I only saw one student by herself.  We all attended different sessions (with a few exceptions) and there was the usual “Here’s what you need to take but here’s the classes that are available” debate. In the end everything worked out pretty well though.

We left home early in the pouring rain.  We drove in the aforementioned rain for the entire trip and the rain continued all day long as we walked around campus to the various meetings.  It wasn’t the wind-driven misery that it could have been; it was just a continuous thing that kept everything cool and, as long as you had an umbrella, didn’t make you wet.  We started off in the Arkansas Union building ballroom which is familiar to all alums.  Yes, we started off by calling the hogs.  Neither Evan nor I participated.  My reason is that I got all that out of my system in 1982; his reason is that he just thinks it’s dumb.  We’ll see what he thinks after attending there for a semester.

The day was a very long one with no breaks for a snack so at about 5:30 (which my nominal dinner time) I became very stupid.  All I could think about was wanting something to eat when we should have been deciding on which section of English to register for.  This is always extremely complicated what with honors sections, requirements to graduate, what your proposed graduate school requires, etc.  This happened at the worst possible time for me but neither Evan nor Melissa were particularly put out so things got handled properly.  Every kid in the room already had a career path mapped out that included graduate school (remember:  honors college) so there was a great deal of detail to keep straight.  Plus, each kid came away with what I would call a heavy course load (of particularly hard classes) so I’m a bit nervous about how this is all going to work out but as a parent, I’d be worried no matter what his schedule looked like.

Late in the day, after going through a rehearsal for registration, we ran the gamut of the greek system which had set up tables in the student center.  None of them looked particularly happy to be there and Evan told me they all seemed like “douchbags” so I guess the fraternity system is out.  I had made that assumption anyway; indeed, I had poisoned his mind against frats long ago so this is really no surprise.

We left him in one of the newer, nicer dorms and headed off to Mel’s brother’s place to stay the night.  Tuesday was the actual day of registration and they herded Mel and I into a room and told us in very polite and nurturing terms that we needed to back off and let our students deal with their own lives by themselves; in short, back off and not be “helicopter parents”.  We’ll see how far that goes.  Apparently, big-screen TVs are common too so we were cautioned to measure the space available before arriving with something huge.

But in the end, everything looked good and Evan is pumped about going there.  He already knows who his roommate is going to be and we met him and his family while there.  They seem like really nice people and so we the parents already feel much better.  I guess you can’t do much better than that.

We left Erin at home to attend driver’s education class and then stay the night with relatives.  She’s very self-sufficient so that was not much of a concern.  She has an active social life and we were getting calls on the way home from her as she arranged her schedule; she was to be picked up and taken to a local swimming pool but we got home in time to take her ourselves.

So it was a whirlwind couple of days but he’s now poised to merge smoothly into college life.  It’s pretty exciting for all of us.