I didn't take into account that Canisius College was founded by German Jesuits (in 1870). If anyone can transform a logistical nightmare into an efficient system it is the Germans. We presented ourselves, in our car, on the street we'd been told to use and were directed to get into a long line of cars hugging the left curb. Ian was sent to check in and pick up his key ("Which one of you is the student?" barked the guy directing traffic) while I waited in the car. The line crept forward and when we got to the front, we were directed to one of the parking spaces in front of the dorm and a horde of students descended on us, quickly took everything out of the car and in about three seconds we were standing outside Ian's door, slightly dazed, surrounded by all his personal possessions. An ancient Jesuit, bundled in a black coat, sat drowsing in a chair in the dorm lobby, presiding. The entire process, from the time we first entered the line, took about twenty minutes.
The rest of move-in day was a whirlwind of activities, with everything running so smoothly that we had time to stop in the bookstore and buy all Ian's books, and walk around the neighborhood, and unpack. There was a generous free lunch for all and Ian was introduced to all the "free" services he will enjoy at Canisius--unlimited free use of Buffalo's public transportation, tutoring, counseling, health clinic, etc. Ian was identified as a legacy student and photographed, with me, as such. There was an atmosphere of plushness, of No Expense Spared. Ian's dorm is gorgeous. I have seen plenty of dorm rooms that are little more than prison cells, but Ian's is thoughtfully designed, with a little jog in the wall so that when the boys are in bed they can't see each other, a lovely view, and generous storage. The common area is stunning. My pictures don't do it justice.
When I was a student at Canisius, I thought the modern buildings were hideous but now I see they have a certain retro charm. (The original 1870 school was in downtown Buffalo and moved to its current location in 1901 and expanded considerably in the 1960s.)
The day ended with a "convocation," a pompous ceremony in which the students were officially welcomed with speeches from campus worthies. Dinner followed, but we skipped it and went out to dinner downtown.
I had been anxious about everything, the logistics of move-in, the emotional adjustment of having a child move out, as well as concern for Ian's well-being and it was an enormous relief to see him so comfortably settled. We talk to him daily and he sounds happy, is hanging out with his Buffalo cousins, will be going to the family labor day party at my sister-in-law's house and is planning to apply for a job as an orderly at the hospital down the street--the same hospital where Jon and several of the cousins and uncles worked in college, and where his grandfather was a physician. Classes officially started yesterday and he likes them so far and is enthusiastic about being a classics major.
Now I will bore you with photos.
|Waiting in line to move in|
|Neighborhood around Canisius|
|Ian in front of his dorm|
|Back end of Christ the King Chapel|
|The priests' house|
|Ian's dorm room|
|Dorm common area|
If you look through the glass, you can see how the common areas alternate between full floor ones and balconies.
|Fabulous retro '60s architecture|