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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at American chapter.

In July, I was preparing to go back to college. I had my dorm picked out, my classes in place and even started buying items for the new place I was supposed to be living in, in DC. I was so ready to go back to DC but then the AU student body received news that we would not be able to live on campus for the fall semester. 

After accepting this news, I was devastated because living with my best friend this semester was going to be the highlight of my year. And suddenly,  I was stuck in Chicago for yet another semester. After a few days of pondering my living situation, my best friend had the most brilliant idea: I  should move to New Hampshire and live with her for the semester!

At first, I was unsure about this living scenario because she lives in middle-of-nowhere-New- Hampshire. Even though it is a beautiful place on the lake, it’s still the void of any societal interaction. My contemplation led me to realize that this would be an amazing opportunity. I have had the chance to live in a city, live in the suburbs of a city and this would be the first time that I would live in a sparsely populated town. I realized what a perfect opportunity this was because, firstly, online classes at home are hard because I am distracted by the familiarity of being at home. I can do whatever I want- if I want to avoid homework I can just get in the car and drive anywhere. I trained my brain to think that at home, I don’t have to do any school work. So, I left home, moved in with my bestie, and I haven’t looked back.  

My new New Hampshire home is probably the most beautiful place I have ever lived in. We are directly on the largest lake in New Hampshire with many mountains, hills, islands and a variety of animals I have never seen. However, it comes with many adjustments. My best friend and I are living in her guest house which functions like an apartment on her property. This means we are in charge of taking care of and maintaining a house. This involves washing the floors, cleaning bathrooms and all other rooms, keeping up with laundry, making sure food is stocked and keeping up with the laundry while maintaining online schooling.

The physical proximity to stores is astoundingly far, for example, the nearest Walmart or Target is an hour away. The nearest McDonalds is 30 minutes away. This is a major change for me because these luxuries were never more than 10 minutes away.

Mike Petrucci

This has been a major adjustment but has also taught me many things about living on my own. It taught me how to prioritize my time because I have to account for taking care of a house instead of a small dorm. It has taught me how to adapt to a certain lifestyle of being in a small town- expand more here. 

I have never thought of myself as a small-town type of person, but living like this has taught me to cook more, enjoy the little things in nature, learn boundaries when you’re with your roommate 24/7 and even appreciate the little hole in the wall places instead of mainstream and commercialized places.

Maria Scheller-Two Girls Friends Long Hair Blonde And Burnette Flower Mural
Maria Scheller / Her Campus
I thought by now I would be homesick, but I’ve finally realized that it’s okay to miss home but I only have so much longer before I have to adult that I might as well enjoy these adventures while I can. I miss DC and I miss Chicago, but you don’t normally get the chance to try a new lifestyle. And so far I’m loving it.

Photos: Her Campus Media Library

Gianna is currently a senior at American University in Washington, D.C., and is majoring in journalism and minoring in political science. She is the Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus at American University. Gianna enjoys writing about Women's Advocacy, Politics and Pop Culture. She also loves to travel and find hole-in-the-wall restaurants in D.C.