My freshman year in college, I was stuck in the dorm’s basement with two roommates and three suite mates. That would have been okay if we hadn’t all shared one bathroom and my roommates (who never studied) hadn’t stayed up late every night. My best friend was also in an undesirable roommate situation, so we decided to ask for a room together for our second semester. Unfortunately, there was only one available, which would have been fine if it had been larger than a shoe box.
Of course, it wasn’t really the size of a shoe box, but that’s what we called it, since it was about half the size of a regular dorm room. And instead of the usual four-poster beds, the room contained bunk beds. Nevertheless, we were desperate, and we really wanted to room together, so we took it. It was actually kind of cute, with built-in desks and louvered closet doors, but there was barely enough room to turn around in. And while I didn’t mind climbing up to the top bunk, I didn’t love jumping off several times a day to answer the phone. We covered the windows with colorful curtains that matched our bedspreads, and nearly everyone who visited talked about how cute our room was.
We grew accustomed to living in such a small space, but it did have its drawbacks. Our dorm was pretty old, and each room was heated by radiators. This was fine most of the time, but sometimes they would bang at night, keeping us awake, and a couple of times it got so hot that we woke up in the middle of the night and found that our solid makeup had melted! We realized our little room couldn’t handle that much heat, so we turned the radiator off before going to bed. With heat already built up and warm rooms on either side, we were cozy all night.
We had our own bathroom right across the hall, which was nice, but it was old fashioned, with a clawfoot tub requiring a stopper. We were okay with that, but sometimes girls a couple of doors down from us stole our toilet paper instead of going downstairs to ask our dorm mother for some. It wasn’t such a big deal, but we got tired of it. Especially since they taunted us from time to time.
All in all, we loved our little room, and we have pleasant memories from that semester. But we didn’t love it enough to ask for it our sophomore year. We moved downstairs to a spacious yellow room with real furniture, but we’ll always remember our adorable shoe box room with bunk beds.