This year’s Wharton Graduate Commencement Ceremony takes place on Mother’s Day. Because of the former, the latter has been an unusual configuration of family members. It’s been a long time since we celebrated Mother’s Day with the complete immediate family. Nor can I recall ever celebrating it with my paternal grandmother in person. So that has been cool.

Just before the afternoon ceremony, we managed to squeeze in brunch at this very hip restaurant called The Continental Midtown. It’s one of the many famed restaurants owned by Stephen Starr and we were lucky to get a table with no reservations. Actually, due to time constraints and not having a reservation, our group had to be split into two tables, one of five and another of two. A & I opted for the smaller table and made up for it by ordering some pretty amazing menu items. A ordered a Tiramisu Waffle while I indulged in a Liquid Chocolate French Toast. Yum yum!

After that, we taxied to the football stadium at Wharton where the ceremony was held. It was a looooooooooooong afternoon. There were many speeches and hundreds of student stage crossings to sit through. Also, we were all wilting under some pretty strong sunshine. Luckily, we had the option over moving into shaded areas of the stadium as the sun moved across the sky. Sitting exposed in the middle of the field, the grads had to suffer through 3 hours of sun while wearing their black gowns and caps.

Post-ceremony was pretty crazy. There were tons of people milling around and the reception area, which was poorly organized, was plugged up to the point of being a fire hazard. After taking photos and such, I was very glad to leave. We took a leisurely stroll back to our living quarters. With sun on my back, breeze on my face, good company at my side, I was very happy and content for an all too brief hour.

Then we got ready for dinner. My sister had made reservations at Roy’s, a Hawaiian fusion restaurant, very trendy and stylish. For the entree, I ordered the Hawaiian Style Misoyaki Butterfish with Sizzling Soy Vinaigrette. Yum yum!!

We return to New York tomorrow, where I will stay for approximately another two weeks. A couple of dear friends will be joining me this week, and I’m REALLY looking forward to that. Although I’m having fun, I miss home, especially my own space and my faith community.