True Life: I Live in Battell

Before coming to Middlebury, I actually thought I wanted to live in Battell. Tour guides will tell you that it’s the place to be when you’re a freshman; that it’s the most social and popular dorm on campus. They talk it up so much that when I found out I was not in Battell for freshmen year I was genuinely upset.

But here’s the secret:

They lie. Whoever tells you living in Battell is fun and the ideal situation for a freshman is lying to you and lying to themselves.

It sucks. Fortunately I currently do not have a roommate (and thank you Karin Hall-Kolts for not telling me if I’m going to be getting one), because I do not think my room will logistically fit two people. I have already taken up most of the space, and I have down-sized A LOT from how much I had in my room in Stewart. I’m afraid some girl will show up one day to move in and there will be no room for her.

Interesting observations on Battell:

  • The building gets progressively better as you move from North to South. I’m not just saying this because I live in B1N and I want everyone to feel sorry for me, it’s simply a fact. The north end of Battell is horrible: the lounge has no DVD player, there is no microwave in the lounge, and it does not have those cool murals in the stairwells. Battell Central is alright, if only because of its proximity to Battell South. And if you have to live in Battell, pray you live in the South. They have a nice lounge, complete with flat screen TV, DVD, and working microwave. Clearly Wonnacott is somewhat on the ball.
  • Battell gets progressively better as you move from the ground floor to the nunnery. Living on the first floor is a legitimate fear of mine. Like at hotels I specifically request to be on the second floor or above. Middlebury did not know that however when they chose my housing. So for the past few nights, I have had to deal with strange people wandering directly outside my window, and with hearing the annoying ringing of the front doors being propped open as people moved in (all the way till one in the morning last night…I’m not bitter or anything). The only advantage I can think of, of living on the first floor this summer is that it will not be as hot as the upper floors.
  • Whoever hangs out in the hallways of Battell is very strange. My tour guide told me that because the rooms of Battell were so small, most people ended up hanging out in the hallways to socialize. After living here, I have no clue who in their right mind would hang out in a Battell hallway. They’re dark, dingy, and I have no idea what drunk freshman might have peed/puked/bled in these hallways.
  • The doors/walls of a Battell room are very thin. You like to sing “Bad Romance” repeatedly as you get ready in the morning? You better hope your neighbors don’t mind. Also don’t be surprised if the custodial staff wakes you up as they start work at what seems to be 5 in the morning (alright it was actually 6:30 and just once, but you get it).

So these observations might be a bit exaggerated, and I should be happy that I have a roof over my head at all. And we’ll see how the rest of the summer goes. Who knows, maybe by the end I’ll be hanging out in the hallways every night, talking about how weird those Stewart kids are, like a normal Battell kid (but I highly doubt it).



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