The title’s perhaps a bit of an over exaggeration, but you’ll see what I’m getting at once you read this.
Yesterday I, and my roommates, packed up and moved off campus for the summer and into a nearby house owned by one of our friend’s family. The agreement this summer was that we’d live in an eight bedroom house together (there are 10 of us total, two of which are couples) near campus for those taking summer classes. So yesterday after my last final we started packing boxes into our moving truck. We started at my fraternity, where two others were moving out as well, then to the sorority houses, then onto the dorms. Boring stuff, you get the picture, but this mundane information comes into play in a bit, I promise.
I’d toured the house a few months back when my friend Amy’s father found out it would be vacant for the summer, offering it to Amy and any friends she could gather to live with her. The place was perfectly fine, nothing impressive, but how much can you ask for, or care about for that matter. It’s just a place to stay for the summer. The idea was that myself and two of my fraternity brothers would live in the basement (three separate bedrooms) with five of the girls and two of their boyfriends living on the top floor. Again, you get the idea.
Yesterday, as we unpacked the truck and got the girls settled, we started to unload the very back of the truck, where my stuff was. During the first trip to the basement, my feet sunk into the carpet and water flooded out onto my foot. The whole place smelled awful of mildew. It was fairly apparent what the situation was here. “It’s pretty bad, isn’t it?” I asked the other guys, carrying boxes behind me. “It’s so much worse,” one of my friends replied.
Evidently the basement had flooded within the past few weeks at sometime when no one was inhabiting the house. Nothing fares terribly well sitting in water for days on end, but carpet and wood paneling are especially prone to taking a beating in these conditions. So, as it turns out, our living quarters have been reduced to pretty unlivable conditions.
We called Amy’s father, who was apologetic about the situation, but obviously can’t provide an immediate solution. He’s promised to get a crew to work on the basement ASAP, but I presume construction crews are fairly busy this time of year. One of my friends bailed immediately yesterday, saying he’d just move in with relatives who live in town. The situation isn’t quite so simple for the other basement-dweller and I, who don’t have places in town to stay. The two of us dragged the mattresses (which thankfully weren’t ruined) upstairs last night and slept in the living room. That’s not going to cut it as a long-term viable solution, though, with people coming in and out of the front door all night long. At least not for me, since I’ll have to get up early throughout the summer for work.
Quite a stretch to call it hell, I know, but still it’s frustrating to be living out of boxes in a common space. I’ve called some of the apartments nearby to see if they have vacancies, which of course none do. With so many students needing places close to campus to stay, I figured it’d be a long shot. For now I’m at least on the wait list at a couple of places, and with all hope there will be a vacancy soon I can swoop in on. Until then I’m living on display.