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Meeting my college roommate wasn’t your typical orientation day encounter. It was the start of a journey that began with a simple direct message and solidified over a coffee-fueled conversation at Tout Suite, where we would soon become regulars. From that serendipitous first meeting, our bond grew, shaping our college experience in ways we never could have imagined.

Like many college freshmen, I turned to social media to break the ice with my future roommate. We found ourselves exchanging messages, navigating the awkward dance of getting to know each other through a screen. We both made it clear that texting was not our expertise but we still made the effort to discuss everything from our hobbies to our fears about living away from home for the first time.

Despite the digital barrier, there was a sense of excitement building as we eagerly anticipated the day we would finally meet in person.

That day came sooner than expected when we agreed to meet at Tout Suite, a neutral ground where we could transition from online acquaintances to real-life roommates. Stepping into the coffee shop, I couldn’t help but feel a flutter of nerves mixed with anticipation. Would we connect as well in person as we had online?

Spotting her in line waiting to order, I made my way over, with a curious blend of excitement and apprehension. As we exchanged awkward greetings and settled into our seats, I found myself wondering if we would have anything to talk about beyond the surface-level conversations we’d had online.

But those fears quickly dissipated as we delved into conversation, the words flowing effortlessly between us. We shared stories of our hometowns, our families and our aspirations for the future. There were moments of laughter and moments of vulnerability, each one drawing us closer together in unexpected ways.

“Can you believe we’re actually doing this roommate thing? I hope you’re not a psycho,” she quipped with a playful grin, breaking the ice with her humor.

As the hours passed, it became clear that we had more in common than we ever could have imagined.

From our similar family structure to our approach to academics, it felt like we were cut from the same cloth, destined to become friends. There was a comfort in knowing that I wouldn’t be navigating the ups and downs of college life alone and that I had someone by my side who understood me.

Leaving Tout Suite that day, I felt a sense of relief and gratitude wash over me. Not only had I found a roommate, but I had also found a friend (my first friend in college!) – someone I could rely on to share the highs and lows of the college experience.

Our meeting at the coffee shop marked the beginning of a friendship that would define my college years, shaping my experiences in ways I never could have anticipated.

We established boundaries early on, setting clear expectations for our living arrangement and respecting each other’s space and privacy. We each had established responsibilities and we stuck to them which made it very smooth sailing. Communication became our greatest asset, allowing us to navigate any possible bumps in the road with honesty and empathy.

As the months turned into years, our friendship continued to flourish. We shared late-night study sessions at coffee shops and impromptu frat parties, celebrated each other’s successes and supported each other through setbacks. We even became each other’s travel buddies, going from exploring the bustling streets of New York City to soaking up the sun in Athens, Greece. Our roommate journey went worldwide! 

From that initial meeting at Tout Suite to exploring so much together, our friendship has blossomed into a lifelong connection. Amidst the chaos of assignments and exams, we’ve created memories that will last a lifetime, navigating the highs and lows of college life with laughter and support.

I know that no matter where life takes us, we’ll always have each other – two friends who found each other in the unlikeliest of places and embarked on a journey that continues to enrich our lives.

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