Like last year, it has taken me a couple of days to get the MIT Splash post up and doing so while I ought to be baking something, surely. It's Thanksgiving tomorrow, as I have to keep reminding myself. Oh to-do list, why do you have to be so long?
As Adam won't be eligible for the program until next year, Olivia was the only one participating in Splash!. Mostly it was the same as last, only this year she was able to meet up with friends and even had some of the same classes with them. Of course the entire experience was more familiar to her (and us). A few things were different, however, with the registration process, namely and it seemed that many classes were cancelled or changed at the last minute. Olivia was able to pick up an walk-in seminar where she made a wonderful little paper cutting of a panda. And unlike last year, we did not go into the city to explore, as we are planning to do that with Olivia, soon. We instead stayed in Cambridge, and we also explored Harvard Square.
As always, Adam proved to be a amiable and interested traveling companion and we enjoyed our day browsing shops, finding some special ornaments for the Yule tree along with a few gifts and having a delicious and easy lunch at Flat Patties.
It seems Alex has a knack for finding forgotten fruit, and the fact that these old grapevines had been ignored, was offensive to his grape growing, wine-making soul.
Upon further exploration, we happened by an old barber shop and since Adam was needing a haircut, we stopped. It was Adam's first ever barber shop experience. From the chairs to the bell ringing cash register, still in use, to the shop light, everything looked as it must have looked fifty years ago. I always appreciate these finds, as they are what makes a trip interesting and memorable. Happily, Adam was pleased with his cut, too.
After a stop at a here for some chocolates (for Alex and Adam, as I could care less about chocolate) we made our way back to our hotel for a rest and clean-up before retrieving Olivia and heading to dinner. Of course we had to wait a bit for the hoards of football fans to make their way across the river--Harvard vs. Yale or something? I guess Harvard won? (I could also care less about football. Or Harvard vs. Yale.)
Finally through the throngs of people, we made it back to our hotel with time enough to kick shoes off when the alarm sounded. As in, loud, blaring, scary alarm, followed by second get out now announcement from the hotel. We grabbed coats and a couple of bags, slipped our shoes back on and made our way down eight flights of stairs to the parking lot, just in time to see four fire trucks and fire marshall pull up to the hotel.
It wasn't very long before we were told that it was safe to go back in and the fire crews left, but it was a worrying few moments there, wondering what was going to happen. Adam of course, was a bit shaken, but he handled himself very competently. Thankfully it was nothing but a false alarm and all was well.
With not much time to spare, we were off again to gather Olivia, who was tired and head-achy at the end of a long day. Alex and I thought a meal of Indian food, the warm breads, the dahls and masala tea and mango lassis were just the thing and we found a welcoming place quickly. At first we were the only ones there, but soon large numbers of people arrived, all dressed in smart and brightly colored party clothes, giving hugs and kisses all around and we found ourselves in the middle of a large celebration. We had a few giggles of our own, too. With leftovers packed and headaches thankfully gone, we said goodnight and went back to our hotel, now firetruck-free, and put our heads to pillows.
On Sunday, we dropped Olivia off at her building and then we three drove the half hour to Ikea, where we planned to spend the day until we picked up Olivia in the evening before heading home.
Mid-afternoon, however, Olivia called to say she was done after having long waits between classes that were turning out to be less than amazing. So I stayed while Alex and Adam went in to Cambridge to get her and by four we were back together again. Yes, we opened and closed Ikea. And yes, we were all beat after such a long, however fun, day. Which is why Monday, our entire day consisted of coffee and tea, books and chairs. And season five of Doctor Who (spoiler alert).
Basically our Monday looked like this:
And now I must do some cooking and baking and tidying for our dinner with family tomorrow at the homestead. While I go about my day, I am mindful of my immense gratitude for my husband and children who make life so interesting, who are flexible like bendy straws and who are willing to explore the mundane and fascinating with equal relish.
If you are also gathering for a harvest meal, blessings on your day. And save room for pumpkin pie.