Last week, I contacted my editor with a dilemma. Now it wasn’t anything major, I had not performed miracle work on a deer in the road and was now responsible for nursing it back to health. But how cool would that be? Would they drink out of bottles? Looking back at that last statement, I’m overwhelmed by the fact that this dilemma even presented itself.
What was this dilemma you ask? Well, of course, I haven’t informed you yet. I had proceeded to engage you in an entire paragraph formed completely by a tangent. That is simply how my mind works. I lay these puppies on the keyboard and words spill out — how the dilemma was a mild case of writer’s block, I’m not quite sure.
Here was my case. My summer has not quite been what I had been banking on. My “final” summer here, as I viewed it is, (Again, not sure why I felt this way since college offers a summer vacation too…) would be a fun-filled adventure of thrills and memories. Dream big. Being a camp counselor for 3-4 year old boys has a way of wearing one out. While their cute faces and miniature voices keep me on my toes from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., the exhaustion sends me straight to bed immediately after work. And so, after waking up from my post-camp nap, I grab a bite to eat and shortly after, result to that quite familiar area in my bedroom. Exciting right?
Not so exciting. And so I’ve been contemplating the little things that would spice up a summer. The little things, here and there, that has ultimately saved me from a dungeon of boredom, considering the monotonous routine.
- Find a new trail, and explore it. Northbrook residents, I hold some mind-rattling news. There is, in fact, a trail named “The Trail Through Time” right behind the Techny Fields. It is a short path that obtains small artifacts from different times, hence the name, and it is a beautiful little path to take a relaxing stroll, dog walk or whatever else might strike your fancy. Imagine my surprise when my friends and I embarked on a group dog walk and led me to this trail, considering I’ve lived behind it my entire life. Yes, I never knew. And yes, you’re welcome.
- Plan a weekend getaway with your friends. Hawaii or Aruba may be a little out of the picture, but who says a weekend on the lake can’t be just as much fun? A few weekends ago, my friends and I were able to escape our busy schedules for just three days, and head down to Green Lake. A weekend stacked with tubing, jet skiing and tanning really hit the spot. I mean that literally. I was sore for the remainder of the week.
- Start a project! My best friends and I began this idea of personal grad gifts. Not just the generic presents you get from relatives or friends, but from the people who know you better than anyone. Throughout the summer, slowly but surely, the seven of us have been handing out our gifts to one another, each tackling a slightly different category of college life. Starting a small project is a simple way to keep occupied and truly engross yourself in the world around you. Considering I have yet to complete my round of gifts, it would be helpful to take my own advice on this one.
- Start a weekly tradition. My family and I have recently discovered the Music in the Park every Tuesday night in the Village Green. And so, every Tuesday you will indeed see the Bergs chowing down some Lou Malnatis while enjoying a great feature of our town in the summer time. While picnics may not be your niche, something else will be. Either with a group or flying solo, find something that you can do out of the house every week. You’ll look forward to it.
- Obsess over a new show. Yes, there are plenty of them, so take your pick. My mom, sister and I have religiously begun watching our summertime guilty pleasure, Hollywood Heights. Is it embarrassing to be an 18-year-old who watches Nick @ Nite? I’m not sure. But it’s fantastic, and we look forward to cuddling up and screaming at one another if we fast-forward one second over the show. A real bonding experience.
- Visit a restaurant you’ve always wanted to. For me, this longing was for the beloved Sarkis. Yes, I had never experienced Sarkis. But you’ve read this far, so you might as well continue no matter how angry, confused, all of the above, that might make you feel. So, I packed up the family and asked them to experience this with me. My dad had grown up going there and my brother makes weekly visits, so this was only a big deal for me. But still, it was something that must be done. And it was delicious. So find a well-known place, or a not so well-known place, and finally dive in. We all have somewhere we’ve wanted to try, so why not now?
Hopefully this list influences at least one other person to face their mid-summer crisis. Accomplish anything on this list after reading the article? Comment below to share your experience!