Thursday, May 14, 2020

A Volcano Visited Us Today {SOS: Magic in a Blog}

This is a season of waiting along with so many other words.  We've been waiting for a decision from the university about fall travel abroad plans.  There's been plans made in our house for Fall in Paris with everyone there for Thanksgiving.  I feel like my bags are packed.  I rolled over a personal day to give me four days.  The virtual meeting last month for two hours gave this daughter hope.

Today the email came mid afternoon all study abroad plans were cancelled for Fall 2020.  We expected this might happen and had prepared a little.  We could move it to spring semester or do the quick three week summer trip in 2021.  I feel like this was just the lava gurgling at the base and WHOOSH - life erupted.

Text messages, phone calls, emails followed and the lava was everywhere.  Her roommate decided two weeks ago to cancel studying abroad and was in the process of getting an apartment with a new friend.  Did we want to join them?  Could we find a sub-letter if Paris in spring is an option?  Could they find a fourth roommate, no three room apartments left.  Were they willing to add a new roommate in spring?  There's one four bedroom apartment left and we could take it today.  Possible?

This was the first wave of that WHOOSH.  More eruptions come.  We send emails to different offices.  Is there going to be a spring or shorter summer option?  Reply - plans for spring and study abroad not cancelled, right now.  There's hope and still a housing dilemma.  

Scheduling emails are sent because scheduling was done for Paris.  Courses are full.  Bubbles are brewing in the flowing lava.  There's hope with an email that more courses will be added since more spaces are needed and there's still a housing dilemma.

Roommate update flows in not going to seek a fourth roommate.  Going to stick with two roommates we are roommate less.  She doesn't know.  We approach her with Paris in spring - apartment not financially responsible and offer a single dorm room in an older population dorm.  This makes me sad to think she'll live without a roommate.  I pray she can travel in the spring.

She begins to process this and is very financially mindful.  Roadblock with housing while emotions are still flowing - you can't see what rooms or dorms are available until you pay a two hundred and forty dollar fee.  Okay - we'll take care of it tomorrow.

Her old roommate calls to share the news she went with the two bedroom and same roommate for the year.  My girl understands why and feels sadness.  She begins searching dorms that are wet.  It would be nice to spray this volcano with water and make it all stop.  A wet dorm is where students who are 21 can have one beer in their room.  I think for her it's more about being with older college students.

So, our erupting evening ends with the image of my junior in college living alone, drinking one beer alone for fall semester.  I share this with her and we both chuckle.

Join me as I share my story with


  1. The best part of this post is that you were both able to chuckle in the end. So many lives are disrupted and plans are on hold. It sounds like you handled this much better than I would have. I have never heard of "wet dorms." That is very interesting. I'm sue they monitor that one beer, too! ;)

  2. Oh Mandy, my heart breaks for your daughter and this whole situation. Hopefully, she will still get her chance to live/study in Paris. This virus has disrupted so many lives in multiple ways. I love the way you used the volcano analogy. Stay safe!

  3. This COVID crisis hits in so many ways and thought young people are less affected physically they have been struck without graduations, with learning remotely, with coming back to live once again with parents, to have plans disrupted and their young lives dissembled - or more accurately ERUPTING.

  4. So many disappointments. Your writing today reminded me of a concrete poem—the lava of disappointments spilling down the side. Hoping for her and you that new opportunities arise out of all of this.

  5. Mandy, I appreciate the way you stretched the metaphor throughout. I can't imagine the stress and you capture it and land it right in my heart. What a tough change to have happen.

  6. So glad you ended with the chuckle. :)