My Latin may be imprecise, but the household has experienced collegium interrupit. The villain of the piece is COVID.
The plan was for the family to drive from Albany, NY, to western Massachusetts and stay at a hotel on Wednesday night. Then on Thursday morning, we would go the five or ten miles to the campus to be there by 9 a.m. A coterie of students would take my daughter’s belongings to her dorm room.
There would be an orientation for her on the first few days and, separately, for her parents as well. The parents would leave the area on Friday, and the college experience would begin.
On Tuesday, my daughter spent hours sitting on our front porch hanging out with two of her best friends before they too headed for college. They finished off the pizza and ice cream.
Wednesday, my daughter loaded the car on her own. We were 15 minutes from leaving when she got a call from one of her friends saying that the friend tested positive for COVID. Then she tested herself twice, and she likewise was infected.
She was largely asymptomatic initially, with a stuffy head that could have been brought on by her cleaning her room. Soon, though, she developed chills and a fever. BTW, she has had three COVID shots, proving this latest variant is inscrutable.
The college dean wrote that my daughter should complete the quarantine process at home. “We will notify residence life, health services, and any other staff who need to know that she will be coming to campus later. They will maintain confidentiality and will only let specific individuals know so they can relay information about [the late arrival]. A staff member from health and counseling services will be in touch, and we will have someone in Residence Life make contact through email with specific instructions for move-in.”
Quarantine for three
Meanwhile, the health services at the college recommended that both my wife and I should stay home for five days as well. We will, except when we go to the urgent care place for a more precise COVID test; they don’t let you in the building until it’s time for the test. If our daughter has negative tests on Monday AND Tuesday, then we can take her to school. But if either is positive, we have to wait ANOTHER five days, by which time classes will have started.
BTW, per the instructions from the Albany County Health Department, we reported the positive findings to them.