Today is Sorting Day for Jungle Boy. Well, they don't really call it that - it's really something like "Placement Day."
He is off in North Carolina for a month to study with American Ballet Theatre during their Summer Intensive. Four weeks of all-day dance classes with some of the best teachers in the world.
He flew on his own this time, with a single suitcase and his dance bag as a carry on. I have spent weeks worrying about packing everything he needs to stay in the dorm - bedding, clothing, a ton of dance gear. There wasn't room for any extras so his room will be pretty bare.
My husband and I sent him off on a red-eye flight so he could get there to check in on Sunday morning. When you're 14 a red-eye is probably more fun then when you're older. Then we watched our computer screens to see if he would make his connection. This is the hard part about sending kid off on their own - worrying about whether they can negotiate a strange airport. It didn't help that his flight out ended up landing 25 minutes late. We both started texting him. His dad told him which gate to get to, and told him to hurry. I waited until he texted that he had made it to his next plane, then I told him I was praying to the luggage-transfer gods.
We got a call from the service that was picking him up - someone else in the program flew out on the same flight but missed the connection. They wanted to know if he made it. I was so proud to say that he did.
Hours later, we got the texts that he and his luggage had arrived just fine. I am so relieved! Now I'll try not to worry about him. He has enough changes of clothes and dance clothes to last him if he does laundry every week. They'll feed him all he can eat at the cafeteria. He got a haircut the day before he left so he wont look too shaggy in four weeks.
And today when he takes his classes to get sorted into a group, I'm pretty sure they'll see a whole lot of awesome. I did my job, now he can show off all of his hard work and training. Good luck Jungle Boy! Have Fun!