After a full day of classes, there is nothing more comforting than ambling up a flight of stairs and relaxing in my surrogate home, that is to say, my dorm room. When I open the door to my three-room double, I am immediately transported into a world of color created through a collaborative effort by my roommate and me. Our common room, formally known as the “Boom Boom Room,” absolutely positively reflects our personalities. My roommate and I are both outgoing people who appreciate weird little oddities. Also, to be completely honest, we are both a little crazy — but crazy in a good way and our room personifies this.
Each section of our common room has its own theme, which combines to create a vibrant, almost pastiche feeling. One section of wall is dedicated to unwanted scarves, shirts, bandanas, and afghans that find a home in the Boom Boom Room. Another wall has art made from recycled materials, such as plastic silverware, cups, plates, and denim. The final wall is a drawing wall where our friends are free to doodle with chalk so that they too can leave their mark on the Boom Boom Room. My roommate and I consider our friends as part of a family, so having them contribute to our common room reminds us of the love and support that they continually give.
Because our friends visit often, the common room is laid out so that as many people as possible can sit and chat. We morphed the extra bed (the room was intended for three) into a couch, and the extra desk into a bench. Bringing the furniture together is a stately blue velvet and dark wood chair that we picked up at Goodwill. Watching over the Boom Boom Room, regal and wise as can be, is Alfredo the owl. As crazy and jumbled as the Boom Boom Room may appear to be, it actually comes together in a very soothing homey way, which accurately reflects our personalities.
One of my friends has a room that reflects not only her laid back and inviting personality, but also the way in which her experiences, both at and facilitated by Grinnell, have influenced her. Last semester, she was in New Delhi participating in an off-campus study program. She absolutely adored her time in India, and that adoration is clearly illustrated in her dorm room. The first thing you notice when you walk into her room is the serene and welcoming ambiance created by the layout. Her mattress is on the floor, and opposite it is an extremely comfortable couch. This set-up is perfect for relieving the stresses of the day, as it invites you to sprawl out and take a much-needed respite. While relaxing on the couch, you notice the heavy Indian influence of the room. An elaborate, colorful comforter made in India graces the couch, while the walls are adorned with miniature Indian paintings and dupattas, or scarves, worn by Indian women. Scattered around the room are little figurines of Hindu gods and antique bells, all of which serve as a reminder of a wonderful off-campus study experience.
Dorm rooms are truly a reflection of the people who live in them. The space is an area where you can express yourself and create a home away from home that can serve your every need.
Melanie Jucewicz '12 is a French Major from Chicago, IL