My time here at Yale has had its ups and downs. It has also had its neither-ups-nor-downs. Its many strings of slow dull moments. Those hours in between meals and after assignments have been turned in. Long afternoon walks alone. 1am sitting indian-style on the floor of Woolsey Rotunda, staring up counting light bulbs and listening to a lone organist practice through locked concert hall doors.
I've spent many of those spans of uncomplicated contentedness in my room. Reading. Listening. Watching. Strumming. Cleaning by shoving things into places I can't see. Dancing in front of the $5 Ikea wall mirror. Falling asleep on the couch instead of the bed for no good reason. I've organized and arranged and acquired this room. I like it in here. I think I've grown to love it a little.
Most underclassmen left campus a few days ago. During move-out, I caught glimpses of empty rooms hastily swept out of all the things which made them one person's and not another's. It's sad to think I'll be doing that same sweeping in a few days. My sacred little space will revert to four clean cream walls, a closet door, an empty bookshelf, and a cold-to-the-touch floor. Any indication that I ever ate or sang or slept or wrote here will be oversights -- careless residue leftovers where I neglected to scrub myself out of the whitewashed woodwork sufficiently. A cleaning crew will come in over the summer and wipe any old receipts or strands of hair I forgot to take with me into the irrecoverable black yawn of a plastic trash bag.
No, I don't want to stay in this one-room kitchenless fourth-floor walk-up with a bathroom shared by too many boys forever. Even I'm more ambitious than that (and also the university won't allow me to live in the college after I've graduated). But I've appreciated all the space I've found in this minute number of square-feet. Next semester, another student will turn a key in the lock of A41. They'll see how awkwardly the unsentimental desk, chair, chest of drawers, and bed-frame sit in its center, a big mess of blonde wood elbows. I hope they're able to find room for themselves within these clean cream walls. I hope they're able to find home for a little while.