Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Penn Departs

It was unusually warm at 2:45 AM when the first member of the UPenn cohort arrived to El Cerrito HS to go through the last minute procedures associated with Departure Day.

Most of the cohort arrived on time with one testing the forgiveness factor by arriving a few minutes late.  It’s tough to chew out a cohort member for being late, though, when the chaperone arrives 20 minutes late.  At that hour of the morning, though, it’s much too early to be heavy handed.

The group went through the normal ritual of affixing their luggage tags, grabbing trash bags (for those wet towels), and weighing their luggage.

Some of the bags were super light while a couple were perilously close to the limit.  One bag, though, topped the maximum allowed by more than 5 pounds.  This required some quick reshuffling with the owner deciding if she really needed everything she had in the bag (she didn’t).  Goods were transferred from the check-in bag to the carry-on and with a bit of judicious decision making the bag made the cut.

Last minute instructions were given which included a plea to remember what they were taught about proofing and formatting their blogs so as to avoid the inevitable emails begging them not to force me to work so hard to correct their errors.

They were reminded to send in their room descriptions so future ILCers might know what to expect.

And they were reminded of the need to listen to the advice/instructions of their chaperone and ILC administrators.  In particular, they were challenged about mastering Time Management.  They were all advised to get plenty of rest before this trip, to start going to bed earlier to adjust to the difference in the time zones and, in particular, to get to bed early the night before Departure Day.  Getting up at 2:30 AM is tough for most people but getting up that early after staying up late to blog is even tougher.  Several of the blogs were posted right before midnight so there’s no getting around the lack of sleep of these young people.

Tomorrow they get to rise around 4 AM (2 AM our time) so we know they’re going to have a tough time with that.

One of the bigger fears the ILC has is that the ILCers will wear themselves out before they start their classes and this is why we try to prepare them for the difference in the time zones as well as the dawn to dusk running around.  We shall see how the Penn cohort fares.

The group headed off to the side to take the group photos before boarding their airport shuttle.  The shuttle arrived early so at 4:17 there was nothing left of them but the memory of the tail lights on the distance.  As this blog is being posted, their plane is somewhere headed east as they head for Houston where in a few hours they will pay a site visit to Rice University.  Tomorrow it will be Atlanta and Emory and Friday they’ll be eating at Distritos in Philadelphia.

We may envy them this adventure but right now they’re envying the fact that most of their fans are still snuggled in their beds catching a few more zzz’s--which is where I’m off to in 2 minutes.

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