Hello Cornell…

Last week, the boychild and I visited Cornell University so he could make a decision about college for next year. He had said all along that he didn’t need to visit a college to decide, but hey, when reality is staring you in the face and it’s a few thousand miles away, then apparently you change your mind.

So I scheduled a last-minute trip during his (and my) Spring Break and their Cornell Days. I watched the weather and was a little freaked out about snow being forecast, especially since we were flying into Syracuse and driving to Ithaca (cheaper). We got into Syracuse (and Ithaca) pretty late. Luckily, I’ve realized that all college towns in the East have the same pizza place that delivers (yes, even to hotel rooms) late at night.

The next day, we ventured out into the rain to the registration area and a class and an info session and lunch and the bookstore, but it was nasty wet rain (I actually bought an umbrella, it was so bad…I know. I’m from Southern California and my old umbrella had BROKEN way back in January or February and I hadn’t replaced it because I DIDN’T NEED TO. I realize my entitlement). I took zero pictures during the rain, mostly because it was so wet and then it got cold, dropping about 40 degrees from the morning to the late afternoon. So ALL of these are from the next day. Well, except this lovely photo, taken from the (crappy) hotel room window when I realized it was SNOWING. Yes, I don’t get out much.

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It’s not even sticking at that point. We actually went out in that to find a local brewpub for dinner.

The boychild doesn’t like to write his name…in fact, I have no problems posting this online, because you can’t even read it (OK, not really).

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He did wear this, but under his jacket. OK, wait, I lied. I did take pictures at Buttermilk Falls State Park, where we went before dinner, just to get a walk in. It was bloody freezing and snowing and absolutely different from what he’s used to here at home, and gorgeous.

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I’m not sure you can argue with any of that. Certainly, visits to see him at college will be fun. Although I might avoid some of the snowier months.

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To many of my readers, this style of house and yard is probably very familiar, but San Diego doesn’t do it this way.

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The next morning, we headed back out to campus to wander around in NON-rainy weather. This I believe is one of the cooperative houses on campus…there were a few of them. At this point, there were some brief snow flurries, but mostly it was just a pretty (and bloody freezing) day. I managed to keep my nose from freezing off my face, but only barely.

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Boychild acknowledged that he might need gloves and better shoes for next year. He wore short sleeves the entire time we were there, but the jacket I bought him for Christmas was entirely the right move.

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There’s a lake on campus (it’s not very big, but it’s cute) and a bridge going over the river that exits the lake…

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The falls were very impressive in the morning…

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He was kind of amazed by the color of the water and the walls of the ravine on each side.

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I was kind of amazed by the ice…

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And the tree icicles.

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Towards the bridge we walked over in the rain yesterday.

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I know. Not much snow.

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This time, we just wandered around to get a feel for the place when water wasn’t sluicing into your eyes.

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He likes it. He says it’s pretty.

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And it has its own art museum.

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Lots of old buildings that remind me of going to school in Wales.

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With Spring just around the corner.

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We ate in there the day before…the bathrooms looked like something out of Hogwart’s, and there was a library with lots of soft chairs and tables, a really old library, that I was too lame to take pictures of…

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Part of the student housing is down this big hill…so I made him walk down it…

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Looking back up at the main campus…

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So he could then experience walking back UP that hill. Definitely a good exercise option if you have to do that a few times a day.

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The weather stayed nice (but still freezing!) the whole time we walked around.

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When we were done exploring (he had decided…he needed no more exploring), we headed off for Syracuse…driving the Bob Nida (my dad) way: If there is a two-line road running parallel to the main highway, then you should be on it, because it is more interesting than the main highway.

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Plus, it has more cemeteries (I warned the boy that I like these…he has experienced my cemetery habit before)…

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And the trees and blue skies with the snow made it quite lovely…

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Meanwhile, back in San Diego, it was SO HOT (per the girlchild)…

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It was in the 80s.

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Certainly a temperature difference.

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We had some time when we got to Syracuse, so we went to a local lake…

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Where fish were dropping from the sky…

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And geese were squawking…

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and trees were falling in the lake…

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More icicles (things I NEVER see).

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Anyway, the goal was to help him decide and it worked, and now I know where he’ll be for probably the next 4 years, so that helps me be less freaked out by it. Besides, I figure he’ll WANT to come back to Southern California after 4 years of freezing his butt off…and it gives me a good excuse to go out there and hike some new trails.


8 thoughts on “Hello Cornell…

  1. Hi there! I found your blog through the college tag. I’m from the West Coast too (although the colder Portland rather than practically tropical San Diego) and I go to Ithaca College–I was super worried about the snow and always assumed I’d run right back to the West Coast after having 4 years of real seasons, but I’ve actually enjoyed having a different climate for a change. It keeps things interesting 🙂 Tell him congrats on Cornell–I hope he loves the Ithaca community as much as I do.


  2. My son went to Ithaca College- across the valley. He loved it so much he stayed for years after he graduated. Of course,growing up near Rochester, NY, the cold wasn’t anything new for him.
    You will love Treman State Park!!!


  3. This made me go all nostalgic – the quad, the library, the slope where we used to sled on trays from the dining hall.


  4. You’re going to laugh at me…I have a different cousin who lives in Syracuse. So if he needs a Lamm relative, he’s covered.


  5. Far above Cayuga’s waters… there’s an awful smell… Some say it’s Cayuga’s waters… Others say Cornell. Your photos brought back lots of memories. I went to the UofR and my hometown sweetie went to Cornell.


  6. “Not much snow…” It’s APRIL for Pete’s sake! There shouldn’t be snow! Well, it probably warmed up soon after.

    The houses: I grew up in the Pacific NorthWest, and have not adapted well to stucco. All the houses that I look at repeatedly have painted clapboard siding. However, one of them is barely painted anymore (seriously, the paint is so peeled, it is showing the wood). It remind me that stucco is, at least, low maintenance!


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