- Millie Smith
Summer 2021: To Be or Not to Be?
We asked some of our Collective Mag contributors to share their summer plans with us - provided they can go ahead depending on restrictions! Find out what they said below.
I think many of you will agree with me when I say that it felt like winter lasted forever. Cold and dark, I was just excited for the time when it would still be sunny at 8pm. Now that we’ve reached that point, and with restrictions relaxing, I cannot wait for the warm, sunny days of summer. My family and I, even before the pandemic, would go on a staycation every summer, and this year isn’t any different. In August, we will be going on holiday to Pembrokeshire. After the endless lockdowns, I cannot wait to go on day trips, and walk along the beach, searching for pretty pieces of sea glass and shells. Also, for me, this summer is particularly special. Although, sadly, there isn’t going to be an in-person graduation this year, I’ll be celebrating the end of my three years at university. As well as this, while on holiday, I’m going to celebrate my 21st birthday, and will hopefully be able to go out for a meal this year! Mostly though, I’m really looking forward to being able to make the most of these events, and summer in general, with my grandparents who I can spend a lot more time with now, finally!
Never have I so badly wanted to squeeze past a snoring, peeling-nosed middle-aged man as I sorry-I just need-could you just my way to a pint sized loo on a screaming baby infested short-haul flight. I am almost at the point where I would happily throw a small mortgage at an Easy-Jet panini, so desperate am I for a fortnight in the Med.
There is little I would not give to be sat on a sandy beach with the cloying smell of Nivea sunscreen and salt spray in the air. To bask in the kind of sun that leaves you warmed to the core and worryingly tired after a day of being beached and stagnant in your laziness. To drag sun-soaked limbs back to a cadaver cold villa and lull into a long evening of calamari, arctic chilled white wine and overly friendly waiters.
Others may dream of gallivanting in packed clubs, diving into their overdraft on mask-less shopping trips or being able to cough in a crowded space without having to quip “I swear it’s not Covid”, but I dream of abroad. I am no longer picky about the end destination, as long as I can pay for an Aperol Spritz in Euros and crisp to a light shade of auburn I will be there. On that note, does anyone have a villa I could borrow in August?
Road tripping, holiday homing and plenty of sun, sea, and some inevitable August showers is what’s making my stomach do somersaults with excitement. Like any old trip across ol’ Blighty, it’s one of those holidays where you must pack a suitcase larger than life for all weather warnings: heatwave, thunderstorm, tropical rainfall, gusts of 60mph – all within the space of three days, but that’s the fun of it. With restrictions taking away our ability to socialise with those further afield we love the most, this summer has called for a staycation with friends whose face has been absent from my life for the last year and a half. The trip - concocted mid-February when our friendship group was, like most of the world, fed up with the cold, dreary darkness of our own houses - will take place in the countryside of west Wales – and not too far from the sandy shores of Tenby; with the UK semi-opening, a staycation seemed like the safest, and most obvious (not to mention budget-friendly) solution. With a trip to, most likely, Aldi for its own brand slip’n’slides, paddling pools and barbecue, with Pimm’s a-flowing – not to mention a murder mystery, quiz night (no, we’re not bored of them just yet!) and roast - I’m sure we can make this staycation a summer to remember.
My summer will be spent in Amsterdam. I will be moving there permanently at the end of June: Amsterdam is one of my favourite cities so I am really looking forward to it! The plan is to find a part-time job and spend the summer balancing working and saving with exploring the city and no doubt spending a lot. The reality for a lot of young people this summer, myself included, will be juggling work and play and trying to make the most of the sun whilst being employed. As I will be an Amsterdam newbie, I will be focusing my energy on making friends and settling into this exciting new chapter of my life. When I am not working, I am planning to take advantage of my surroundings and spend time exploring the city and venturing to new Dutch cities on my days off. Covid-permitting, I would also love to take a weekend away from Amsterdam and visit another European city like Paris or Berlin with some friends (if you can’t tell, European cities are just my favourite things ever). Ultimately, I cannot wait for city-park picnics, summer evening bike rides, making friends and overpriced iced coffees.