A few weeks ago, I did something I haven’t done in over a year: I took some time off from work and I left the state of Virginia. For someone who has literally traveled around the world, it may seem ridiculous to be so excited about leaving the Mid-Atlantic region, but it was a long time coming (also we were avoiding part of cicada season).
I took a Thursday and a Friday off from work, packed up a car with my (retired) parents and we started the long drive up the East Coast to Connecticut. (If you want a full recap of our road choices, my father can inform you; I was asleep in the back seat for most of this.) Why Connecticut of all places? Well, I have deposited at a law school (!!!) located in Hartford, Connecticut and wanted to go for a visit.
Side note: law school is strange because it is a rolling acceptance system. You can be accepted in September when you apply or you can be accepted from the wait list during Orientation Week. So though I have deposited at a school, I don’t know what the summer may bring. As of right now, I’ll be heading to Connecticut, but I also have my options open until I move there.
Our main goals for the trip were to avoid the beginning of the cicadas in the DC area, to see campus, check out a few apartments, and also go on a little vacation. Also my mom wanted to see a beach – it’s the little things in life. We successfully managed to avoid cicadas on our trip. So, one point to us.
We made it up to Hartford with plenty of sunshine left and decided to head to Dunkin Donuts Park for a baseball game. It’s been a while since we sat in the stands for a game, so we really enjoyed the opportunity to watch the Hartford Yard Goats (#NoGoatsNoGlory) and eat some junk food. Our weekend was made great by some beautiful spring weather (something we don’t really get in DC). So we soaked up some Vitamin D while we could and enjoyed the light breeze. Alas, the goats were defeated but it was a pleasant night nonetheless.
Our first stop on Friday was a visit to the law school. Everything is closed down, but I still wanted to stop by. We made a loop through the buildings, peeking in windows when we could, and marveling at how collegiate it felt. We made mental notes of parking availability and the various names of buildings, before we set off for breakfast (at Dunkin of course!).
Our Friday and Saturday were spent driving around the area, exploring Hartford and West Hartford, taking a couple of apartment tours. Previous attempts at organizing a lot of tours for the weekend were foiled and we were too early for most of the apartments that might be available in August, but the driving around and tours we did take were helpful.
The last time I was in Hartford was looking for colleges for my brother – in 2009. We had vague recollections of this park or that building, but if I was planning to move to the city, I needed a little more information. Our drives showed us the variety of neighborhoods and what driving routes would be available. We spotted a couple of places and made notes. We ate at local restaurants, soaking in the spring weather and the vacation vibes we hadn’t seen in over a year. Generally we ate, explored, and enjoyed the nice weather. We also did get a brief chance to visit a beach for my mother, despite there being absolutely no waves and gross seaweed/moss keeping us from dipping our toes in for too long.
And then it was time to drive home. We got a Dunkin on the road home and made it back with no problems (once again, I was asleep in the backseat). By the time we pulled into the driveway, there was a low buzz – the cicadas had awakened in our time away. My father got a nice bike ride in and my mother and I spent the afternoon washing the cars.
Despite the short timeframe, the lack of an apartment lease, and the long-ish drive, I’d call the trip an overall success, but that might just have to do with all the donuts I ate…