By Mike Rainone for the News
Here we all are very patiently but desperately trying to enjoy summer between rain showers and some chilly-wily weather that Mother Nature has blown our way for the past few wet and windy weeks. School is out, the holiday and social schedule has been carefully arranged, and it is that perfect time for us to be blessed with hot sun, blue skies, and the great opportunity to cast off the winter woollies, let loose, and transform our rather pale bodies into a delightful shade of bronze, beauty, and total relaxation at our own speed and choice of sassy outfits and good company.
Of course we will always say that the moisture is great but the perfect combination of heat and sunshine is also required to give our lush fields and yards the best opportunity of reaching full bountiful bloom and glory. Summer 2019 is now beckoning all of us to get outside and enjoy the golf courses, the playing fields, the best fishing and boating, and all the amazing campgrounds and countless family playtime sights, attractions, and activities that our great province and beyond has to offer. Of course as we frolic through July we will also be right in the middle of those daily and often unpredictable weather watches and warnings, which usually pop up each day in the forecast, so before we head out anywhere we should always be prepared to gather up the gang and head for safe cover.
Here are just a few of those neat fun-times that come to mind for all age groups in the great outdoors, and I know for sure that all of you will have lots more action planned for your special summer vacation in the sun, which we should always make the best of, because it only lasts for a little while.
I am sure that everyone, over the course of our active lives, will always share some very fond memories of those great holiday trips, whether it be those amazing week or day summer camps hosted by the church, Brownies, Guides, Cubs, Scouts, Air Cadets, sports, music or countless other groups, or just heading out with our very own special family. No matter where we may venture, camping out is a unique and exciting chance to rough it away from home for a week or two, to meet and mingle with new friends, to hike into what remains of our natural wonders, hang out around the roaring fire, and to browse in the vast outdoors. It is there in those peaceful and invigorating surrounding areas where everyone can enjoy a relaxing break from all the rules, routines, work, school, and other busy schedules that we all have to follow for the rest of the year.
If we aren’t on a summer sports team, it is easy to get our own game going with family and friends. Pick up softball or soccer is great, where you can set your own rules and everyone gets to play, and who doesn’t enjoy a casual match of beach volleyball, which offers a soft landing in the sand, and what can you say about those spectacular uniforms they wear. Tossing the Frisbee is a long standing and simple game that can be played by land or sea, and even the dog likes to join in. Bocce has always been one of my favourite leisure games, because it can be played in the back yard, the park, or any location where nature provides a patch of grass or trees. Tennis or badminton also offers some great exercise just about any place you can put up a net around the campground, but then after working up a good sweat, there is nothing better than dashing out into the lake and getting wet all over. One can enjoy hours just wandering along the beach, better yet cruising around on all those inflatables, which are the new spin-off of the good-old inner-tube from dad’s old truck tire! The newest water toys on which to skim, ski, surf, or suddenly sink include a wide and speedy variety of sea-doos, boards, and all the rest that you can perform on your own or hang on for dear life behind boats that are getting faster and bigger. Whatever big splash you may choose please make sure that you are wearing a life jacket and that the strings on all of our fancy summer outfits are done up tightly.
On those real windy or wet days you can snuggle down and read a good book, play some board games, have a nap, or just go fly a kite. There are a wide variety of store-bought kites, you can still grab a buddy and make your own with paper, sticks, and a little glue, but please stay away from the power-lines. One could also go out and tinker in the garage, shine up your golf clubs or call or go visit someone who is shut-in or under the weather.
Despite what we may say about the annual adventures of our Alberta snowbirds, or those who enjoy the escape from winter getaways, our summer will always be the best occasion for your choice of some quality R and R, whether it be at the cabin, in a pup-tent, house boat, motor home, or at a five star resort. Nowadays, with many thousands on the road and staying a little closer to home because of the gas prices, it is very important to book your camp-ground or other accommodations well in advance to make sure you have a spot when you get there. Wherever your summer holiday may take you, please plan ahead, be prepared, take a map, don’t forget the bug spray and sun-tan lotion, and above all have a most wonderful time that you will never forget! We will be just fine, the sun will shine, so just go ahead and have a great week, all of you.