Well, this bird has officially flown the nest.
Saturday morning my sister and I got in my car, (that was packed to the brim with stuff) my parents got in their car, (with a few more items) and off we went. Thankfully, I only moved an hour and a half from home which made the process pretty simple. Once we arrived at my new place of residence, there were people ready to help us unpack the vehicles. Thanks to my family and the helpers, everything was unloaded in no time! As I live on the fourth floor, everything had to be sent up in a few elevator trips. The elevator was very strange and looked like an elevator-wanna-be dumb waiter. It’s big enough to fit about two people (very closely). My mom and sister went up to the fourth flour so they could call up the elevator-wanna-be dumb waiter as my dad and I loaded it up.
After we lugged all of my belongings in to my room, we left to explore the area a bit and grab lunch. My mom had already visited the campus with me once before, but neither my dad nor sister had ever been. So, we started with the Basilica (National Shrine) on campus.
We spent a good amount of time exploring and admiring the beautiful architecture of the Basilica. By the time we left the Basilica, I was starving. So, we walked over to a street close by that has a cute little strip of restaurants and a book store. After eating, we made a group trip to Target to get me a microwave. The target here is two stories with a separate escalator specifically for getting your shopping cart between floors. Once we got back with my microwave and a new tupperware, my family and I parted ways.
I had saved the unpacking for when my family left so that I could just play music and focus on that. Besides, I much preferred spending the afternoon exploring with them then completing the mundane task of unpacking. I was proud of myself with how focused I got and how quickly I found a place for everything. It still doesn’t quite feel like “home” yet, but I am sure I will change that over the next few weeks.
The actual process of moving went incredibly smoothly, almost too smoothly. It felt too good to be true. Within about twenty minutes of being here, I left my key card to access the hallway in my room and therefore got locked out. Fortunately, someone was able to let me in. My family made fun of me for already getting locked out. Later, when I did have my key card, I realized that it wouldn’t have mattered had I not forgotten my card earlier because my card did not work. After talking to a few Resident Assistants, their supervisor, and Housing Services it was determined that I needed a new card. However, this was on Saturday and the office that issued cards would not open until Monday. So, I was repeatedly locked out of my hall multiple times a day for two days. On Monday I finally got a new card.
When I first decided to live in a dorm, I was less than thrilled. I had really wanted to live in an apartment, but city living is no joke and costs two arms and two legs. Now that I have been here for a few days, I have come to like dorm living.
- I feel safe. I need a key to access my hallway and a separate key to access my room. If I come home after hours, then I need another key to access the building.
- I didn’t have to pay for any big pieces of furniture which means that move-in and move-out are made much easier than if I had moved in to an apartment.
- I basically only have to clean my own room. No more cleaning the bathroom for me! Every few days, poof, and the bathroom is clean.
- Even though I am in a dorm, there is a shared lounge, kitchen, and laundry facility (which is free! Can’t get free laundry in an apartment).
- I am forced to interact with other people. I can be a bit of a recluse, but let’s be honest, I get lonely. In an apartment, it would never be expected to interact with neighbors. Here, I am expected to go to meetings and people knock on my door to give me snacks to get through the first day of classes. I know, I know, those things cannot be my only form of human interaction, but it’s a start. I am sure that I will be baking things for the floor before too long.
- I have an individual air unit that I can run 24/7 to keep my room at a comfortable 62 degrees and not worry about running up my electric bill.
- I am forced to exercise on a daily basis since I live on the fourth floor in an old building with an extremely sketchy elevator. Yesterday, I walked up approximately twenty flights of stairs and that will be the norm for Mondays. I better have killer legs by the end of the school year.
- I can walk to all of my classes, to a metro station, and to a restaurant that serves milkshakes. I can also justify those milkshakes because I have to walk about a quarter mile to attain one and then up four flights of non-air conditioned stairs or four and a half of air conditioned stairs afterwards.
- Even though I am in a city, the campus allows for a peaceful and quiet atmosphere.
- There are people that live across the hall that get paid to talk to me (i.e. RAs). I mean, I hope that it doesn’t come down to me seeking human interaction via some one who has no choice but to listen to me, but hey, it is nice to know that it’s there!
So, there it is. More to come Later.