Ellen

I live in the basement of a residence hall in the freshman quad at DePauw University.  When I moved into my room, it felt more like I was bringing stuff for an extended stay away from home than like I was picking up my life and moving it elsewhere.  Over the past year as I’ve gone home for various visits, I’ve moved more of my stuff out of my room in my house and into my dorm room.  Slowly, Greencastle has become more my home than my house in Carmel.  I’ve gotten used to the comfort of the Den rather than leftovers from the refrigerator to satisfy late night cravings.
Since arriving at DePauw, my friends have teased me for calling my dorm room my “house”.  I always explain that I think “room” sounds like a prison cell.  I live on a floor with 16 other girls. Our floor is dingy and my window is mostly covered by a bush but somehow between move in day and right now as I sit at my desk and write this we have grown into a family, rather than co-habitants.  We have late-night conversations in the bathroom when we should all be in bed and we take care of each other when we’re sick and we scream songs of the 90s when we shower.
I live in a place which at first glance probably looks fairly unpleasant and undesirable as a permanent dwelling.  But now, because I think our basement floor is one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen, I can say for certain that it’s not where you are that matters, but who you’re with.

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