Sunday, November 20, 2016

Country Mouse visits the Big City

When Noah was younger, one of my nicknames for him was "my little mouse."  He was not a fan.

Anytime I said it, he'd scrunch up his nose, make fists, and tighten his shoulders as he'd growl,
"My not a ittle mouse, my a boy!"

As he towers over me with his giant frame, I rarely call him that anymore but was reminded of it Friday when a major milestone took place.

My little country mouse toured the Big City and his future college.

The entire day seemed like a dream, in every sense of the word.  For me, it was hard to imagine that in a year and a half my baby will be on his own, hours from home.  For Noah, it was a glimpse into the future he's always wanted.  And seeing him experience his passion helped take some of the sting out of him growing up, up, and away.

Wednesday night we realized that each of us would be off on Friday - a rare occurrence in this house.  Noah was also in the midst of picking his senior schedule and trying to decide about dual credit courses for college.  It hit me that this was the perfect opportunity to tour his top pick - Sullivan University.  Tim made the call the next morning and, thankfully, they were able to work us in for an early Friday slot.

Though we had to set an alarm at 4 am, the entire day could not have been more perfect.  We toured the campus, spending most of our time in the culinary hall, which is where Noah plans to major.  He was able to meet a few of the chef/professors, a couple students, and see the kitchen/labs where he'd be learning.

There were many times I got teary but my voice even cracked, as I shared with the rep how he's wanted to be a chef since he was knee-high to a bar stool.  I can still picture him donning his yellow apron and setting out his own supplies to cook beside me.  Where did the time go?...

We also visited the dorm, which is actually a renovated hotel, complete with individual bathrooms, a pool. fitness room, convenience store and even a movie theatre on site!  The excitement as he soaked everything in was visible.

This was getting real.

We were so caught up in the moment that few pictures were taken.  Looking back, I wish I'd gotten more but I know there will be future visits to do so.  What we did capture was our next stops, once leaving campus.

Recommended by his advisor, we stopped for lunch at a local place ran by a graduate of Sullivan.  Super Chefs was everything Noah rolled into one establishment.  God, superheroes, and amazing food.  If he could've envisioned his dream restaurant, I imagine it'd been very similar.

Every wall had cool hero art, Noah was mega-jelly
I'm not sure why the Grinch was eating at Super Chef
but it was pretty cool to meet him

The food was amazing.  Our server called it "Caviar taste on a Rally's budget."  It did not disappoint.

Tim played it safe with steak and eggs.  I had fish tacos and a Caesar salad.  And Noah ordered shrimp quesadilla.  After seeing his dinner menu, we have to go back.  And the red velvet pancakes were calling my name for breakfast.  Guess we know where we'll eat while visiting Noah in the future!

We did save room for dessert, as Noah wanted to stop back by the campus bakery on our way home.  He plans to double major in both culinary and pastry, so it was neat for him to experience where he'll someday be.  Asking the lady for a sample box, we began pointing to the various delicacies.  At the end, we received a heart hug, as the total was 23.32 - a sure sign big brother approves of his future plans.

I'm still pinching myself and trying to ignore the giant red countdown clock that reminds me how quickly time is passing.  Though I know I'll miss him terribly - and can't even envision what life will be like then, seeing his smile makes every tear this momma knows will come so very worth it.  

Dream big, sweet boy.  The world is your oyster.  Or shrimp.  And even creme brulee. 


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