A Family Away from Home

by Clive K (Hulick) Connor '75

Clive K (Hulick) Connor and her daughter

In 2003, my daughter and I were heading to Canada. We were planning on touring around Nova Scotia and Cape Breton and then heading to Prince Edward Island, where she would compete in a Scottish Highland Dance competition. My daughter and I traveled a lot together, usually staying in youth hostels or similar inexpensive places. Unfortunately, by the time we started planning that trip to Canada, the youth hostels in Nova Scotia were already booked. I decided to send emails to Williams alumni who lived in Nova Scotia to ask for their advice on other inexpensive, but safe, options. I did not know any of these alums but simply looked up addresses in the Alumni Directory. 

I received a response from one man, whose name I can no longer remember, who told me about we might be able to stay in  university rooms in Halifax. He gave me his phone number and asked me to call him when I got to town.

We arrived in Halifax, and I found a pay phone and made the call. I came back to the dinner table and told my daughter that we were going to this man's house for dinner the next night. She asked me if I knew him. I replied, “No.” Then she said, “Let me get this straight. We are going to a complete stranger's house for dinner tomorrow.” My response, “He's not a complete stranger. He went to Williams.”  She just shrugged and rolled her eyes. (She was a teenager, after all).

We did go to dinner, and this man and his wife rolled out the red carpet. His grown children were also there, and he served us "traditional" foods of Nova Scotia. We talked about our experiences at Williams and my experiences as one of the first women to enroll for four years. On the way back to the university that night, my daughter admitted that she'd had a good time and that Williams alums were definitely like family. I wish I could remember that Eph’s name!

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