After living in McCandless Hall for both my first and second years at Saint Mary's, I never thought I would appreciate living in another residence hall as much as I do.
Don't get me wrong — McCandless will always have a place in my heart — but I will never regret my decision to move into my cozy single with a shared bathroom on the second floor of Le Mans.
McCandless has its perks; it's close to the gym so during the frigid months of December, January and February, I don't have to freeze when I feel the need to work out.
It's also close to the parking lot, making it a whole lot nicer to walk home from my car at night. And, with the close proximity to parking, I have to struggle less when I attempt to carry in my bags of groceries back to my room after going to the store.
Additionally, the rooms have large windows in McCandless, so a lot of light can shine in during the day, which I always appreciate.
The building itself is also newer, which means the rooms are less damaged, and it has air conditioning in the hallways and study carrels, making the building tolerable to live in during the summer months.
Despite the benefits of living in my old residence hall, last year I decided to branch out and try a new building.
My new room has twice the floor space of my old room. In my McCandless single, the only seating I had room for was on my bed. This year, I have upgraded to a futon.
I also love Le Mans because of its location. Smack dab in the middle of campus, it is less than a five minute walk from Le Mans to every building on campus.
What I love most about Le Mans is the tunnel connecting Le Mans to the Student Center.
I never thought I would appreciate the tunnel as much as I do, but I quickly discovered its charm. As I write this column, it is below freezing outside. Because of the tunnel, I didn't have to go outside in the frigid cold to get dinner.
On weekends, if I choose, I can stay inside all day long and still eat in the dining hall.
At 11:30 p.m., when I run out of salsa to go with my tortilla chips, I can walk downstairs, go through the tunnel and buy some in the C-Store without ever stepping foot in the cold — not to mention when it rains.
Assuming I'm coming from my dorm, I will never have to walk in the pouring rain to eat meals again.
The tunnel, among other details, adds to the charm of this older building. With its hardwood floors, transom windows and random trap doors located in a variety of rooms, I have fallen in love with my residence hall.
There are days when I miss McCandless, but I'll never regret choosing Le Mans.
The views expressed in the Inside Column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.
Contact Alicia Smith at email@example.com