BY EMANI COLLINS
Yes, the month of May is coming to an end, and summer officially begins on June 21st, a little more than three weeks from now. Summer, of course, is the season to enjoy the outdoors. Whether you have a planned bike riding session with your workout group, a scheduled vacation or “baecation,”or a family picnic at a nearby park, make sure to get out! Okay, by “get out,” I do not mean like the movie star, Daniel Kaluuya. Just keep reading!
There are endless possibilities and opportunities during the summer. After a long Spring semester, a hectic start to your new position, or a terrible breakup, the summer sun is sure to enlighten your world. Summer season is among us. We must plan accordingly. In order to have fun, you must make sure that you have a few things set in advance. For instance, you cannot have much “fun” without any “funds.” Let’s get started!
1. Save up some dough.
Now, I understand that there are only a few weeks left before summer begins, but it is never too late to save some cash. I know your job has been stressful, but stop putting all of your money into shopping sprees to make you feel better, and save your gwalla for something bigger. A cruise to Mexico could be in your future if you just put down the VISA at Zaxby’s, and opt for a home-cooked meal using the groceries that you haven’t touched. I know that you still have those monetary assets that dad gave you throughout this bumpy period in the year. Keep holding on to that! Listen, I know it’s hard, but you have to think about the bigger picture! I didn’t say cut out all shopping, but save up some extra cash to put toward a vacation or even a weekend getaway. Saving money may come easy to you. Trust me, you’ll thank yourself in the end.
2. Hit Facebook to see when or if your friends will be in town.You may not be a big social media fan, or maybe you are, either way you need to find the best way to get in contact with all of your friends. Even introverts don’t want to “turn up” alone during the starry, summer nights. Maybe all of your friends live in different states, but there is a possibility for you to collectively link. I’m a college student, but I still make it a priority for my friends and I to get together every summer. Maybe Facebook isn’t your thing. There is always Twitter, Snapchat, and the dependable “Messages” app on your phone. I know it's pretty ancient, but you could even try calling.
3. Give ole’ reliable a quick tune-up.Whether you have a 1994 Volvo Wagon or a 2016 Kia Optima, make sure you take your car to the mechanic for a check up. During the summer, I am sure that you will be driving a lot—finding new eateries in town, taking road trips, and being the “DD” (designated driver) for that one friend who never remembers their limit. (Please, do not drink and drive!) There are many websites that help people find mechanics in their area, such as Be Car Care Aware. If you are 100% sure that your car is fine, just fuel up and enjoy the ride!
5. Stock up on sunscreen and mosquito repellent.I cannot stress this enough. Sunscreen is extremely important to your summer fun. Not only do you not want to return home as ten different shades, but the UV rays from the sun are very damaging to your skin. You must make it a priority to find the best sunscreen for you before the summer begins! On another note, if you are anything like me, you have the sweetest blood and mosquitoes tend to bother you more than others. The love that mosquitoes have for you can become extremely annoying when you are at the bonfire scratching your arm off, while your friends are enjoying their s’mores. After many trips to the Caribbean, I figured out the two best brands for people who have painstaking trouble with mosquitoes: “Off! Deep Woods” and Skeeter Spray,” which can be purchased from Amazon or your local drug store. Although it is a relief when you are no longer bitten, be very mindful of how much spray you use. The amount of spray that you use can also be damaging to your skin and health.