The Retiree August 26th, 2015

It's quiet again here. Daughter and Granddaughter went to Wisconsin with a carload of stuff a college freshman would need. Before they left, they also filled up our SUV with more stuff a college freshman might need, after putting stuff a college freshman won't need in our garage. Then they came back for even more stuff and left a couple days later. We will deliver our stuff in a week or so just to make our back seat useful again.
Granddaughter went to China with a school group and returned just in time to take a driver's test. You can imagine how that went after flying on a plane for hours and hours and hours. Her learner's permit was still good, though, and on their return—without her purse by mistake—it paid off. A copy of the permit proved sufficient. The state keeps track of those things. Daughter is concerned with paying off college, too, and mentioned several times how important a job was going to be. But how many times does a kid get to go to China?
China! There were a dozen students on the trip, and they each raised a couple grand to go. It was no doubt a bargain. When I was a high school senior, we got to go to Columbia Park in Nordeast Minneapolis. It didn't cost two grand, and we didn't need a translator. I don't think Dad even got to go Nordeast.
My first quarter at college cost $58 for tuition. Granddaughters are paying multitudes more. Now they can get degrees in Women's Studies or Art History instead of Business or Engineering.
Another Granddaughter is going to Spain for a school year to teach Spaniards English. It's a long way to go when a good share of students here haven't learned English yet.
Uncles, four or five of them, went abroad free, but they had to carry weapons and not college textbooks. I got to go abroad free, too, but had to carry systems work and a portable computer when they weighed about forty pounds. Nobody shot at me.
We'll be in attendance for opening ceremonies at one school. Our yard has had a car parked under a tree for a year waiting for the girls. Now they are licensed, but they will be an hour apart, and it's not my job to figure out which one gets to drive, or when. The first one to get a job and can afford the extra insurance cost will be the chauffeur for the other one.
My college plan was to get on a bus to the U and try to schedule classes near the bus line. It's no use comparing what went on way back when with modern times. I didn't need a computer. Come to think of it, there were no personal computers, unless you invented one, and then nobody could have conversed with you anyway. Times change.

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