They were all instructed to arrive no later than 3:20 AM at El Cerrito High School to be processed for their trip to Ithaca, New York (via Chicago, the University of Chicago and Northwestern University) where they will enroll in Cornell University to study philosophy and Hotel Management. Because they were trekking to the airport with the Columbia cohort, the group was larger than any other departure group the ILC has ever sent. And because there were two cohorts at the same time, the potential for a glitch was greater than normal. To allow for the unexpected, the group was instructed to arrive earlier than we would normally ask them to arrive. Better to wait for the airport shuttle rather than have the shuttle wait for them.
It was a relatively clear night, 54º, a slight breeze and a hint of moisture in the air from the lingering summer fog the Bay Area is famous for this time of year.
All of the Cornell cohort (save one) arrived well ahead of schedule which meant that much of their processing was taken care of even before they were supposed to be there. The end result was a longer wait than normal. [One of the cohort members forgot something at home and had to pull a quick U-turn. And this is why we build in time for the glitches!]
When both cohorts were finally assembled we gathered together where I could give them all some final instructions and reminders. More forms had to be signed as well as the luggage weighed.
And, of course, we had to gather for a quick group photo to memorialize the event.
Because this was the largest group the ILC had ever sent (14 souls) we were unsure how the livery service would handle things. To our great pleasure, a full sized charter tourist bus drove up. No one had to be crammed into an undersized van, no one had to sit on someone else’s lap and the luggage wasn’t crushed as it was stowed.
At 4:22 AM the bus pulled off and by the time the tail lights were but a memory the teary eyed parents were heading to their cars. And now we start our own adventure of checking their blogs every day to see what kinds of adventure they’ve whipped up for themselves.