My dad is coming to visit this weekend, so I am posting on Thursday instead of Sunday!
It was actually my dad who took me to Vancouver for the first time in 2002 when I was doing my college search. I don’t know where he got the idea of a Canadian university from (his bank account?), but he suggested I consider McGill and UBC. We ended up only visiting UBC, but I was so taken with the area and the school that it remained one of my top choices. I ended up choosing Smith because it had all of the trimmings of a small, East Coast, liberal arts college – from the traditions to the history to the name recognition and extensive list of powerful and intriguing alumnae. I also still had those dreams of working in US politics, and Smith’s government program won out over UBC’s (excellent but, obviously, not US-focused) political science department. In typical all-or-nothing fashion, I only ever sent a full application to Smith.
Being a divorced kid, I had always felt a little bad about choosing Smith over UBC because I had visited Smith on a trip with my mom and I worried that my dad felt left out. There was some distance between my dad and me during my teen years while my mom and I were very close; I think he felt left out a lot. It’s funny that all of these years later to know how important that Vancouver trip really was.
I’m excited to see my dad! There’s still some distance between us, but it’s not charged like it once was; it’s a relaxed space. Gone is that confused and perhaps resentful silence. I think we both are better at accepting the other now. I’m older, he’s wiser, and the stakes seem somehow both lower and higher. It’s also been over a year (the last time I saw him was at my wedding in Sept. 2009). He has since made an international move (from Switzerland to the US) and changed jobs. There’s a lot to catch up on, and what better place to do it than where he and I took one of our only big father-daughter trips?
So, no post on Sunday… we’ll probably be out having dim sum! Yum!