We visited Brian at college last weekend. Wise friend Cheryl R. advised to visit the weekend before or after parents weekend to avoid the crush. We went the weekend before and had a great time.
Connecting flight via Charlotte made for a little more travel than we’d like, but it was totally worth it. Have I mentioned how lovely the Knoxville airport is? Bubbling brook down the center aisle, about a two block walk from end to end of the airport? Come see it!
We stayed on campus and took Brian and roommates to lunch at Brits Pub.
Nice group of guys. Suitemates are from the area, within 1 hour of Minneapolis, and roommate is from Rolling Meadows (they were introduced by a friend and signed up to be roommates). Enjoyed seeing their rapport, and they teased that Brian was the heaviest weekend sleeper. The were a clever bunch, one of them suggested a picture closer to the dorm entrance so you could see the entry architecture and the “1930” founding stone at the bottom left.
After lunch we visited their dorm at Pioneer Hall, the oldest dorm at U of M. The room looked great, they had rearranged it from the original configuration.
They added a futon, moved one desk to a bedroom, hung some posters and had plenty of storage. They do use the space to study and watch tv. Brian then gave us a three hour tour of the campus, taking us from the student union to most of his classroom buildings, including the Carlson School of Management.
The quad between older buildings, he has a class in one of these old buildings.
Patio outside the student union.
Has a math lecture in this cool modern building. He was an excellent tour guide, showing us interesting spots along the way and throwing in details about his schedule we enjoyed hearing.
We crossed the Mississippi as he does multiple times a day. There is a cool “shoe tree” at one end of the bridge.
We took a quick buzz through the art museum on campus and saw some nice displays, including this awesome thing made out of balloons.
Tom took the opportunity to relax in a spinning lounge chair in a room of nude paintings.
That night we went to a football game and that was a blast. The TCF Bank stadium is newer and we had a good view from the corner.
Brian was with friends in the student section, which was rowdy and entertaining. Minnesota has been having a good season (before meeting any Big 10 challenges), and we saw a victory. Nice knit hat below (picture for knitter sisters.)
Cold beer, hot dogs, pretzels, peanuts, half time show and college football on a crisp fall night was fun.
Final stop on Sunday was to pickup Brian and head to Buffalo Wild Wings for football. Lots of banter about fantasy football strategies and we enjoyed being a foursome again for a short time. They begged me to take this picture for old time sake (not.)
The waitress took our drink order and asked if we wanted to start with appetizers, and Kevin quickly piped up that we’d start with chips and salsa. As she walked away, Brian said, whoah, whoah, what, now you’re in charge? Kevin quipped, we’ve made a few changes around here since you left. It was funny and good to see the two of them in their element.
I offered to take Brian to Target or make a run for anything he needed, but he was content and felt he had everything he needed. That would be the word I’d sum up for him, content at college, which is a good place to be.
He is enjoying his independence, doing well in classes, has joined club volleyball (practice 2 nights a week, first tournament in Madison Oct. 13), and is dating a nice girl from MN he’s been friends with and took to prom. Good to see him happy on his own.
Back to Knoxville late Sunday night, and that wasn’t all bad. Thanks for reading and enjoy the rest of your weekend!