And . . . She’s Off

By , July 18, 2010

It’s Done. We hiked out this morning and put Aly on a plane to attend the Alaska Summer Research Academy (ASRA).

She caught a local flight to Juneau, where she’ll lay over for a couple of hours, then fly to Anchorage, where, after a further layover, she’ll arrive in Fairbanks this evening.

I’m pretty proud of Michelle and my reaction to all this. We managed to leave most of the preparations to Aly, in keeping with her unschooling. Any time we asked if she’d thought of a specific item, she almost always had. If she needed help, she asked. Neither of us are very clear on her schedule, which seems appropriate—a big part of this learning experience is seeing what it will be like when she goes to college, and this lesson applies as much to us as it does to her.

Yet, there are always subjects for which we feel we’ve inadequately prepared her. During her lay over in Juneau she intends to eat lunch at the airport restaurant. Just before her plane left, I remembered to brief her on aspects of this process that she’s barely had opportunity to observe, since we almost never eat out: the different ways to pay a bill, and tipping, specifically.

We know she’ll do fine. If she sometimes appears helpless, we have to remember that she acts that way around us, but if we’re not there to take the lead, she handles things well on her own. Time to let her do that.

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