Cyber D writing about his freshman year roommate made me think of mine. I have been cleaning out my crap in my house, and came across an essay I wrote about my freshman year roommate in a writing class I was required to take in my freshman year because my writing was so bad. It's rather pathetically written, so I'll only copy the better parts. I'm not sure I ever shared this with her, so it'll be some new insight from me as she does read this blog.
I was assigned to room with a woman from Puerto Rico. We wrote some letters back and forth the summer before freshman year, and finally we managed to speak to each other on the phone.
The voice on the phone had an edge of nervousness in it which made her sound very young. She did most of the talking, and with her heavy Puerto Rican accent it was no easy task to understand her. It didn't matter much, however, because we both really just needed to hear the sound of the other's voice to somehow capture the essence of the person.
When the big meeting day arrived, I was in our room early in the morning. She was nowhere to be found. It wasn't until later in the afternoon that I heard the keys jingle and she came klunking into the room on her clogs.
A bright smile came over her face as we shook hands. "Hello my name is DBN as you know." As we continued to talk, she bobbed around the room doing her thing, her short curly hair always in place, the movement destroying any possibility of tension. "This is for you" produced a beautiful painted t-shirt from Puerto Rico.
As she moved, her short, solidly-built body never hesitated and her stride was always purposeful. Time for dinner? "OK. Let's go." Sometimes, bouncing down the hall and popping in and out of rooms, good will seemed to pour out of her, too much to be contained. Other times, preoccupation made her seem aloof, yet anyone who knew her knew that a wide grin and a big hug weren't far away. Sensitivity is a part of her: a knowing smile or a pat on the back gives comfort.
That's it for the good part. DBN and I ended up living together two more times - senior year off campus, when I tasted for the first and last time her rice dish with squid ink (yucky) - and 3 years later when we were both in the same city as I did a year long internship. This year will be 24 years that we know each other! Holy crap. Boy are we old.