I had never been to Boston before last weekend.
If not for the harsh winters I might just want to move there.
Lucky for me I might get to visit it more often because it looks like Ke$ha Barbie might go to school up there.
Ke$ha Barbie is an artist.
Now I know all of you out there in blogland are thinking "everyone's kid is an artist"...and that is true...
But she is the real deal.
She is truly an artist.
Since she was very little she has been able to draw.
My mother taught her how to draw a mouse when she was 2 years old. They sat down at her desk (which is now in my bedroom and someday I will teach my grandchild how to draw while we sit there) and my mother showed her how to do a simple little drawing.
She copied it perfectly.
In fact, her (Ke$ha Barbie's) mouse was better than "Nona's" (my kids called my mother "Nona" even though we are not Italian because my mother could not stand the thought of being called "Grandma").
Once she learned to do that, there was no stopping her. She draws beautifully. Her shading and execution are unbelievable. Her sense of perspective is perfect and God-given. She can draw anything.
Her sophomore year of high school she decided to try out the photography course that was offered at the school. The school she attends has an amazing photography department. Their photo labs rival that of many colleges...and the teachers are excellent.
She always liked taking pictures. When on vacation she would often grab my camera and do the most interesting things with it.
I take "pretty" pictures and fairly decent sports shots. I'm ok...not great..but ok...and if I had a better and faster lens my sports stuff would be very good. That's on the "I want to buy" list but that is down the road.
The way I always compare our work is that I say that if she and I stood before a beautiful vista my pictures would look like a travel guide or postcard shot.
Hers would be...ART
And they are...she shoots from more interesting angles, she crops things better and she has a much better eye for light and perspective.
So she took up photography and the instructors started to take notice of her and her work.
2 years later she is the star of the department and they have encouraged her that she should persue it because she has real talent.
She still draws but it is the camera that opens up her soul sometimes.
So up to Boston we went to look at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and Tufts University. Tufts offers a dual degree with the Museum School so she can not only get her Fine Arts degree but can also get something that might actually help her make a living.
I don't so much see Ke$ha Barbie living in a garret and working as a barrista at Starbucks so she can buy film.
As artistic as she is, she is equally mathmatical and scientific. She is equally left and right brained.
Makes her a difficult child to deal with to say the least...and before we left she was really having a difficult time feeling like she knew what direction to head in with her schooling. She felt lost...
So off we went.
It was not a trip without hiccups and some strife.
It started with her informing me as we were walking out the door that she had lost her driver's license. Not good since she is now 18. So we had to go to her father's house to fetch her passport.
Not on my planned activities for the day. That made us a little late. I just wanted to get there, get our bags dropped off, go through security and have a bloody mary in the Continental lounge because I am a nervous flier...
We argued the entire way to the airport.
We argued about my being anxious to get there and then we had a battle over the radio and music.
She thinks she has superior taste in music.
Um....no she doesn't. I don't think "Bjork" qualifies as good music. Remember her? The chick that wore the swan dress to the Oscars? Yes, that one...
We got to the airport and got settled in at the club and she complained that we were there. She wanted to be out in the terminal and get pizza.
At 10 in the morning
She can do that...she is a size 0
I have never been a zero...unless it had a "1" or "2" in front of it.
We get on the plane and I was overjoyed to find that they had Direct TV on the plane...so I watched Food Network on the almost 4 hour flight. Paula Deen cooks sone amazingly bad-for-you stuff. But it looks oh-so-good to eat.
We get to Boston...it's drizzling...but not bad. Get to our hotel and check in...got a great room with a view of Boston Common thanks to the guy at check-in liking women from Texas.
Then we went to the lounge on our floor and I had a couple of glasses of wine to recover and we had some snacks...then we hit the street and did a bit of shopping and then had dinner.
It was delicious.
If you are ever in Boston, go to "Mare". Italian seafood...amazing.
We started with raw oysters with lemoncello ice...yum....
and then pan seared scallops with a lemon cream pasta...double yum
and then I had salmon...some of the best ever...
The next morning I took a spin class at the gym that was in the same building as the hotel. It was a darn good class.
I met an amazing woman there from Britain. She told me it was her first spin class and that she was a bit afraid of bikes because years ago she had been injured in an accident while riding her bike. It as a hit and run and the driver of the car left her for dead.
She survived but was in a coma....
for 12 YEARS....
She was a delight and I very much enjoyed her company.
You see, just when you think YOU are amazing, God gives you a gift and shows you that you are not all that and a bag of chips. So I had been chatting with a woman about my weight loss after the class and she was impressed but then when we met Jan (the Brit), we were blown away...
My weight loss is nothing compared to surviving an accident like that and then waking up after 12 years.
So after spin class we decided to go out to Tufts and visit the university. Except that it was closed.
So we did what we usually do when we have free time...
We went shopping.
We had a great time. Ke$ha Barbie is always agreeable when I am buying her things. We went into one store and everyone stared at her when she came out to show me the dresses she was trying on...she looked beautiful.
I bought some shoes...and a pair of flat boots since my other ones were killing me.
After a full day of tearing up Newberry Street (the H&M store there is the bomb...bought a cute dress for $20!), we headed back to the hotel for evening refreshments (wine for me...Pellegrino for her...but I did let her have a little glass of wine...bad mommy...but I'd rather her try it with me than try it with friends and end up drinking "Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill" like I did).
We were tired so we opted for a bowl of real New England Clam Chowder from room service and rented "Jane Eyre" on the video movies. Good flick...
The next morning was the open house at the museum school.
I walked in and knew she had found her mothership.
I won't bore you with all of the details but it is an incredible school for the truly gifted artists that go there. If she gets accepted she will be challenged and very happy. You can tell it is an art school.
It's a little like the movie "Fame"
except for no singing and dancing...and no one is jumping on cars on the street while singing "I want to live forever"...or maybe they do and I just didn't see it.
The kids up there liked my accent.
and they wondered why Ke$ha Barbie does not have an accent...
I'm a hick, that's why...
But they were amused by the silly lady from Texas in the blue fur and suede coat with the huge bag...I left my bag with some students in the bag check and we had fun conversing every time I went back to get something from my purse. They were adorable.
So we did some workshops and toured the place.
Ke$ha Barbie was particularly excited by 3 things:
1) the photo labs are as good or better than her high school ones and they lend cameras
2) they have a kiln big enough for her to climb into and stand up in...and yes, we all recommended that she NOT EVER do that!
3) they have welding....
She says to me "I get to cut steel with fire!!!!!"
The dean who was walking around with us informed me that yes, they do provide the steel for the students to use.
I can only imagine the phone call if they didn't:
"Hi mom! I need to buy some steel. Can I put it on your credit card? And then I have to figure out how to get it home on the "T" (train)"....
not kidding...that is how it would go
Like I said...this is her mothership.
When the other students looked at her portfolio they were impressed...impressed by how good it was and how good her work is for someone who just turned 18.
that is a good sign
and they liked her...and she liked them...
We also toured the residence hall for the freshman. It is a shared building with another art school. I'm trying to adjust to the fact it is a co-ed dorm but they don't live together in the same rooms (thank goodness). All the rooms have 4 separate bedrooms, a full kitchen, a tiny living room/lounge, and a shared bathroom.
At the end of the hall they have fabulous studio space for them to work in.
There is also a common lounge on each floor.
Only at an art school would you find a sign that says:
"Do NOT bring your art in here or do your art in here. This room is for lounging and conversation...not for working!"
I thought it was hilarious!
So after our fantastic time at the school we headed back to the hotel and then had a fun very typical New England dinner (lobster, steamers, chowder) at the Union Oyster House.
I really needed the spin class I took the next morning.
On Sunday we met up with a sweet young friend who goes to Tufts. Her father is a friend of mine and she attended the same schools as Ke$ha Barbie. She was the perfect person for us to meet up with. I'm gonna call her "Blue Eyed Babe" because she is. She was as sweet and wonderful as she is beautiful. I told her dad he had much to be proud of. I also told him the following:
"Ke$ha Barbie found her mother ship...and your daughter is the captain!!!!"
He liked that...
So we got some great scoop on Boston, and how to dress, and what kinds of coats she will need, and where to live....and Blue Eyed Babe encouraged her to do 2 things I really was happy about:'
1) to pursue the dual degree offered by Tufts...the BFA from the museum school is a good degree...and it is a Tufts degree...but the dual program will allow her to get that "real job" kind of degreee
2) to go through sorority Rush...so she can make friends up there...
I told Blue Eyed Babe she was forever in my debt for that...even if I am a Pi Phi and there is no Pi Phi chapter there...
Ke$ha Barbie is unsure about the sorority thing....but she has found a degree plan she likes:
It fits her to a "t"...
So we enjoyed our afternoon with Blue Eyed Babe and had a fun lunch with her and then it was time to head to the airport.
And that is when we met the (literally) insane cab driver.
Just our luck
First he tells us he is a musician...and when we stopped at a light he pulled out his trumpet and played us the worst rendition of "Over the Rainbow" I have ever heard.
Then he tells us he is a tv producer.
And then he tells us he is a non-denominational minister.
And then he starts saying some really crazy stuff (as if it could get crazier)...stuff about American Indians...
I was just praying we would get to Logan airport before he informed us he was also a serial killer...
When we got out of the car he handed us his "card" and sure enough it lists all of the above as his profession(s)...
I was never so happy to see an airport in my life.
So we had an great trip...a long 4 hour flight home...and yes we ended up arguing about music all the way home because she would not stop playing her strange stuff on the ipod in the car. I begged her to find middle ground.
Out of 30 songs she tried we only agreed on one:
"Cocaine" by Eric Clapton
Inspiration Song: "Boston" by Augustana...lyrics: "I think I'll go to Boston...I think I'll start a new life"...because my darlings, that is what Ke$ha Barbie can do there...and she will be amazing at it...and one day, when you see her work in a museum you will remember I told you about her...
Bye Darlings...go to Boston...it's the bomb!