Oh Mom

Kuan Luo 07/11/08More articles
On June 27, I was on my way to Syracuse Hancock Airport, when my cell rang. “The plane just landed,” the familiar voice said.
“I am almost there,” I answered.
“Good! Perfect timing! I am just about to get the luggage.”
“Nice. See you soon Mom,” I said.
My mom had arrived from New York City and would spend a week with me in Syracuse. Technically, she flew all the way from Shanghai, China to take care of some business affairs in New York City, and then she demanded a week off work in order to visit me.
After I declared my independence on June 27, 2007—exactly a year from this day, when I arrived in Syracuse for my college education, I had lived the life I wanted. Right now, knowing that my mom was just five minutes away made me nervous. I was nervous about the return of her “because I’m the mother” rules.
As expected, she commanded to see my room, which I rented for the summer, after I settled her down in the Sheraton Hotel. Even more expected, she totally re-arranged my “messy” room and questioned why I needed this and that after her thorough investigation of my innocent poor little room. She criticized the sanitation of the house I lived in, and was shocked by the ineffectiveness of the laundry machine downstairs once she discovered a few spots on my shirts.
Without further discussion with the occupant, which was me, about what to do with the room, she took out the stuff that I had piled in the closet, and put them in the order that she deemed necessary. Moreover, she pulled out my sheets and comforter and took them back to the hotel in order to “clean” them.
Since I don’t have a car, and my mom forgot to bring her license, we basically had to rely on our legs and public transportation to get around Syracuse. I showed her our campus, told her the stories that I encountered in the academic buildings and took her to the Carousel Mall, Jazz Fest at OCC and we went to see “Menopause the Musical”at Syracuse Stage. However, despite all these cultural events I took her to, she told me later that the place she liked the most in Syracuse was the rose garden where she went for walks every morning on her own. Oh dear mom… We ate in nearly every restaurant on Marshall Street, and I took her to L’Adour for fine French dinner as well, but she still concluded that Chinese food was preferable to her stomach. Oh dear mom…

Give me lady liberty or give me independence or whatever
I accompanied my mom to New York City to make sure everything went well until her departure for home. Her flight was scheduled for midnight of the fourth of July, so we had a whole day to wander around the Big Apple.
Instead of walking along Fifth Avenue, we decided to check out The Statue of Liberty. For the first time ever in my life, I found traveling so unpredictable, but interesting, as we not only missed the Lady of Liberty, but also accidentally stepped on New Jersey soil. The ship took us all the way to Atlantic Highlands, where we found out that nothing was going on as we enjoyed four pieces of New Jersey chicken tenders.
We laughed so hard on our way back on the ship, looking at each other and thinking about this amazing trip to NJ. She ironically joked that she could proudly tell my dad when she got home that her wonderful tour guide (me) took her to New Jersey for a journey as well. She worried so much about me possibly not knowing the destination, but also admitted that drifting to NJ by chance was really rare and thus was the highlight of the trip.
In JFK that night, we hugged goodbye before I left for my friend Nicole’s house on Long Island for the holiday weekend. Looking down from the escalator, the figure of my mom became smaller and smaller. While it is the time for me to celebrate my independence again (on the fourth of July no less!), I didn’t feel as excited as I might of hoped, instead I somehow felt lonely for my mom.

Kuan Luo is a 19 year old resident of Shanghai, China studying rhetoric and writing at Syracuse University. This is her first summer in Syracuse.

CATEGORY: General Family & Home
TAGS: shanghai, china, syracuse university, New Jersey, NYC, Luo, Statue of Liberty, Independence day
EDITION: The Eagle

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