Student Experience Blog

College Dorms and Christmas Lights

I recently got a clapper for the Christmas lights I have strung up around my room. A clapper is a neat little product that you can plug lights into, and then plug it into the wall. If you set it up correctly, all you have to do to turn lights on and off is clap a couple times. It took maybe a total of ten minutes to finally get it working properly. My boyfriend and I stood incredibly close to the outlet the contraption was attached too, and progressively moved across the room to try and make sure it was listening from every corner of the room.

The first five minutes proved that we should have read the instructions: I had accidently plugged the lights into the wrong outlet. After realizing which outlet was correct, we also found a neat quality that lets us plug in two items. One can be turned on with two claps, and another with three.

We’re living in the future, folks.

After the outlets were settled, we stood around the room clapping. My hands hurt after goofing around for a bit (it takes a pretty deep, bellowing clap for this thing to read any noise) but we were pretty excited. No more standing up to turn off the lights. No more reaching behind a dresser to plug and un-plug the lights from a wall. Just a simple CLAP CLAP and boom! A beautiful twilight atmosphere or darkness.

We also have a couple salt rock lamps and a desk lamp that looks like a miniature professional movie light. Any and all of this is preferred to the fluorescent, doomsday light the room came with.

Other than our electrical set up, we have framed and holographic Beatles posters hanging up on two different walls (Let it Be and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club, if you’re interested), a Chance the Rapper poster above the desk, and artwork including some of my water colors. The aesthetic of the room can best be described as mixed but matched. It’s essentially the combination of two separate individuals into a comfortable space, and our room reflects that through decorations and alternative lighting and bedsheets and blankets and books and clothes… We’ve made a wonderful little world where we live and it’s my favorite place to be.

And in a little less than five months, we have to take it all apart.

I’ve been settling in only to pick up and move about seven months later for four years. This year was a little different, because I moved off campus and had my own apartment complete with my very own kitchen and living room. But even with a place slightly bigger and more permanent than a dorm, half my things that are too difficult to move are collecting dust in my childhood bedroom back in California.

College living has taught me a lot about myself. It’s taught me that I like to fold clothes and keep a tidy room. I’m a heavy sleeper, but there is always a limit (like watching a movie at volume eighty sometimes around four in the morning). I also need some time alone to recharge away from the world. These are all good things to know about yourself, and I’m very appreciative. BUT. I am ready to move on.

I am ready for a more permanent place. Somewhere I know I’ll be for a little longer than nine months. A place I could match furniture to and maybe get a little puppy. Somewhere closer to work and farther away from weekend parties (I’m not fun anymore, I know). Maybe my boyfriend and I would get a little dog and some goldfish or something.

I don’t think I would be ready without the practice of moving in and out of temporary nests like college dorms. I will miss simplicity of it, of course. But not the communal bathrooms.

And you can bet your sweet money I’m bringing my Christmas lights after college. They are not a phase.