30-Year-Old Finally Leaves the Nest

It’s a milestone so common that it has become a Hollywood trope: The son packs his things, carries all those vestiges of his former life across the threshold of the front door and, with the unwavering encouragement of his parents, finally leaves their house to face the wider world.

It’s a little less common for that son to be 30 years old — and still less common for his parents’ “encouragement” to take the form of a court order.

But here we are.

Michael Rotondo, the man evicted after months of wrangling with his parents, complied Friday with the ruling that a county supreme court justice handed down last week. Local media report he left the house in Camillus, N.Y., just four hours before his high noon deadline to depart.

Then he came back to grab a few more things.

But he did leave again, this time with 2 1/2 hours to spare. And this time with the aging car that had become a focal point of the roughly half-dozen messages his parents wrote him before going to court. The hatchback got a little help from some jumper cables, and Rotondo offered the members of the media gathered outside a tasteful honk of the horn before leaving the block.

That honk lent a valedictory note to what had become a winding saga that NPR’s Bill Chappell recounted last week. First, in October, there were the informal discussions about leaving the house; then, beginning in February, there were the notes that escalated from a little financial motivation to formal orders to leave; and finally, after an original 30-day deadline lapsed, there was the confrontation in court.

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SOURCE: NPR, Colin Dwyer