Sunday, June 08, 2008

On the way home

We are flying west over the United States in the seemingly long, but not really long, flight home. We have had a great trip.

This trip was like three vacations, each quite different. The first Washington where we got to spend time with my son Steve, his wife Luci, grandkids Cazden and Saxony, plus be there when new baby Solomon was born! It was very pleasant being able to spend time with them It was also good getting to know Luci's mom Vicki better. We also spent some time in Seattle and Woodinville, Washington on this leg of our vacation. We even had a case of very good Washington wine shipped back.

The second leg was the Vermont vacation. There we spent a lot of time with Sue's old college friends. I went to school where I now work, at San Jose State University (SJSU) and Sue went to University of Vermont (UVM).

UVM is in a college town, Burlington. My impression is UVM students typically live together in dorms or in the many sororities and fraternities there. The school is about a third the size of SJSU and seems to me to be a lot more intimate than SJSU. UVM's revenue includes tuition and it seems to me most UVM students are sent there by parents who pay for their tuition and living expenses.

SJSU is more of a commuter school. While SJSU student fees are high, compared to UVM tuition the cost of going to school is much lower at SJSU. SJSU students often live off campus and pay their own ways to school, often while supporting families. Many of SJSU's students are older with full-time jobs away from campus. SJSU has a lot of night classes, UVM has few if any night classes according to Sue. Also, San Jose has a big university, but it is not a college town like Burlington.

In short, you will likely never have a UVM style reunion for SJSU students. I had a blast and enjoyed meeting her friends, partying in Burlington and hearing the many stories of their UVM experiences as well as learning about everybody's life after UVM. Staying with Sheree and Richard after the reunion and our adventure to Montreal was an added bonus of the Vermont phase of the trip.

The third and final phase of the vacation was our time in New York City. I wish I could spend a month there. What a city! It is truly the city that never sleeps. We rode a subway train, took many scary cab rides and walked a lot. I did my version of what Robert Scoble and Thomas Hawk call "photo walking." In my version you photograph what your eye sees and take advantage of the free and easy nature of digital photography to create a photo journal of your wanderings. Yesterday alone I took well over 200 photos. What better place for this than New York City? We spent time there with Colleen, one of Sue's oldest friends and Sue's brother John. That was a lot of fun. I hope to be able to post many photos of this to Flickr in the next few days.

For now, we are tired, it will be good to be home. There is no Internet access on this plane, so this post will be posted after we land. If you are reading this, we are back in California.

About our vacation? We saw many new places, saw new things, saw family, saw old friends, made new friends, had adventures, made discoveries; we did all that and more.

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