live away from home

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diogerepus

Senior Member
Korean
I don't think he(dad) even suspected that I'd use that sleepy little town of Northampton as my escape route. Smith offered me the perfect opportunity to strike out on my own. I couldn't very well live away from home when the college is 2 hours away, by car. That would be pushing it, even for dad.
The above sentences are said by a girl who has just admitted to Smith college. I'll add some more story before the quote: When this girl decided to go to Smith, her dad really liked it because Smith was a women's college.

My problem is the underlined sentence. I don't understand why she couldn't live away from home. If her college is too far to commute, doesn't she have to live away from home?
 
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  • Cypherpunk

    Senior Member
    US, English
    Since Smith is in Northampton, we can be sure that she is going to Smith, and it allows her an opportunity to move away from home.
    I think she means that she is not as far away from home as she would like. If something were to happen, her father could get there within two hours. I think she wants to live farther away from home. The other sentences suggest that she can move farther away, to Smith, because her dad is comfortable with it, since it's a women's college.
     

    diogerepus

    Senior Member
    Korean
    So the college she mentioned in the underlined is not referring to Smith. She is referring to a college in general, right?
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Cypherpunk's explanation is the best one I can think of, but this is a very odd way to express this idea. Is the underlined sentence absolutely correct?
    I couldn't very well live away from home when the college is 2 hours away, by car.
    Also it is hard to make sense of, That would be pushing it, even for dad. Was there any conversation about driving so far every day? Did her father express any opinions about whether or not she should live away from home if she went to Smith?
     

    diogerepus

    Senior Member
    Korean
    I was adamant about living in the dorms like all the other girls. When I first decided to go to Smith, dad was ecstatic. I think he really liked the fact that I'd be attending an all women's college instead of a co-ed institution.
    Yes, the underlined part is correct. I think I get the point thanks to Cypherpunk. Since you're a little bit curious about the story. The above is the part right before the quote. Thank you all.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    I fear that I am being stubborn, or perhaps in some regions "live away from home" has a meaning that I am not familiar with, but I think there is an error in the printed sentence. I would expect the sentence to be something like:
    I couldn't very well live at home when the college is 2 hours away, by car.
    I do agree that Cypherpunk has given the intended meaning.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    The only way I can make sense of the extract is that the speaker had two higher education options.

    College A [un-named] was only two hours from home, and Dad would therefore have expected her to continue to live with her parents.

    College B [Smith] was more than two hours from home, so she could live in a college dormitory rather than living with her parents.

    Does that fit the context?
     
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