At the end of our first day on the road, we stopped by the Jadud domicile. Matt Jadud was a visiting professor at Olin last year while Lynn Stein was on sabbatical; he does CS and education (and robotics and concurrency and a bajillion other things) and he is wonderful.
In Pennsylvania, they have Real Food. The Jaduds have an apple tree in their backyard. Apparently Real Apples are small and lumpy. They're also very tart. Also featured in The House Of Jadud are Real Pears and Real Blueberries. We went in to a meal of spaghetti with sauce made with Real Vegetables and Real Cheese (it comes not-in-a-green-can!) and then we went to the county fair.
They deep-fry everything at the county fair. We had deep-fried Oreos and split an elephant ear (dough stretched into a gigantic pancake, fried, brushed with butter, and dredged with cinnamon sugar) and then cried uncle while Matt and his friend from grad school went on to demolish impossibly towering ice cream cones. Tank discovered she was allergic to cows. I was astonished by the Very Large Geese. Everyone was terribly amused by a 4H poster on "How To Research Turtles." In primary colored marker printed with painstaking neatness on a sheet of posterboard:
1. Go to google.com (or any search engine)
2. Type in "TURTLES" (do not forget the quotation marks)
3. <insert things about 'finding reliable sources' and using the '+' sign for multiple words and clicking 'back' in your browser to try another webpage>
The best part was the final step in the lower right hand corner, in brightly concluding blue letters:
...then, COPY INFO!
It won first prize.
Then we stayed up late talking and I ended up creeping into the guest room at wee-o-clock in the morning (apparently Nikki was still awake when I crept into my sleeping bag) and having my head swim with thoughts of changing the world - slowly and quietly and with more patience than I believe I currently possess, but changing it nonetheless. (Yes, with engineering education. I still think it is the best hope for my greatest contribution.)
If growing up can mean becoming like Matt Jadud, I really don't think I'll mind it all that much.