The conversations started back in August, maybe even July. "Wil? Do you want to come and spend the night with me at college this year?"
"I will on October 4th," he answered, each time the question was asked, never once looking at a calendar. As we all know, October 4th landed on a Friday this year, and as luck would have it, Wil's high school football team had an away game (far away), so he was free.
Woohoo and Wil worked out the whole entire thing on their own, all I did was pack him a bag and leave it by the front door. Woohoo and two friends, Marcie and Noah, came and got his stuff, before they had a "wild" time at Trader Joe's, Safeway, Bi-Mart, and even the Franz Bakery Outlet (the apple doesn't fall far from the tree). Then the three wild ones drove out to Wil's school and picked him up when he was out.
Woohoo lives in a "coed" dorm, but really, it's a girls' dorm with a boys' dorm attached. They even have different names. Noah was one of Wil's student assistants his freshman year, and they've stayed in touch. Whenever we go visit Woohoo, we try also to see Noah. Woohoo explained it all to Wil that he would not be able to actually sleep in her room, but that Noah and his roommate had room and wanted him, and she'd be "right next door." He bought it. And when I told him he could skip showering, but not brushing his teeth, he was downright giddy.
Wil being Wil, rejected all spirit wear options from Woohoo's university I presented to him on Friday morning, and instead, wore a college T-shirt from a rival college. That's about right. I should have forbade him from wearing anything remotely in the color scheme of her college, and he would have been all decked out.
Woohoo, Wil, Noah, Marcie and a few others, had a great time. They went to dinner, they hung out in the different rooms, and at 8:30, Wil went to bed. Noah had an event he had to go to, but the sainted roommate put headphones on and stayed in the room with Wil, playing video games. Woohoo told Wil he could wake up whenever he wanted, but he couldn't be noisy until 8:00. He woke up at his usual 6:00 AM, and STM and I began getting texts. He quietly listened to music on his iPad until the roommates woke up, fortunately, they both had to be up early anyway. Woohoo took over, but the dining hall didn't open until 10:00, so thinking ahead, she had gotten extra "taco" from the commons the night before, and heated that up for him in the kitchen in the basement of her dorm, where he could be as noisy as he wanted to be.
When the commons did open, the gang all gathered there for the last hurrah, then she packed him all up neatly and efficiently, and brought him back home!
STM was banging around in the kitchen with a spring in his step, "I'm excited for the kids to come by," he said. I felt like I'd been picked up out of the present (and my fears of the future) and dropped into some alternate universe where we were happy empty nesters, excited for the kids to stop by.
I'm choosing to believe his words were more prophetic than just a case of him not really saying what he meant to say. Either way, the "kids came by" and it was fun. Then one of the kids left to go to her other home. Now, the next time someone asks Wil if he's visited any college, he can say, "Yes. I even had an overnight."