Ah, winter break. A time more commonly referred to by students as salvation. A chance to let out our collective, built-up, way-over-due, sigh of relief. We go home to our families and holiday decorations, feasts and festivities, prying relatives, and binge-watching entire seasons of Orange is the New Black. Some fly home to faraway places. I, myself, made the journey to the foreign land of New Jersey, a whole 30 minutes away from Arcadia. Now that all the holiday hoopla is over, you might think: “I’m bored”. Wondering what else there is to do. Eager to get back into university life.
Hold up. What is there to do? I’ll try to come up with a list, but getting past No. 1 – Sleep – is challenging.
- Sleep. Did I already say sleep? The next semester will creep up on you quickly and relentlessly. One day, you will be enjoying an episode of your favorite show in bed, laughing while sipping a mug of hot cocoa, and the next, you’re moving back into Oak Summit. There’s no limit here. Don’t overdo anything. Get the eight hours your body deserves (or take a cheeky 9 or even 10; you worked hard this past semester) because when second semester begins, it’s back to being a semi-functional student with a interrupted sleep schedule and endless deadlines.
- Eat. Okay, this one is dangerous. Winter break has at least 2 major holidays in its borders, two holidays that, more often than not, come 2-for-1 packaged with large dinners or parties. We all think to ourselves, “I should enjoy this third plate of baked macaroni and cheese, greens, and ham. I’ve had 4 months of Chat food. I deserve this.” While I am not opposed to that third plate, I suggest airing on the side of caution. Because when we return to Arcadia and you go to throw on your favorite pair of jeans and they’re just a bit too snug… what I’m saying here is eat heartily and plentifully, but don’t overdo it.
- Reconnect. Meet up with old friends for dinner, take your ex to see Star Wars (or… don’t), sit with your family for a meal and chat. You’ve been gone for 4 months, maybe more, and even if you don’t think it, your family and friends have missed you and want to catch up. As tempting as it is to watch that season finale, put it off until later.
- Enjoy your hobby of choice. Despite following all my suggestions, I have still spent an unacceptable amount of time on Netflix. Parks and Rec, Pokemon, Jessica Jones, and don’t get me started on the movies. For me, though, I enjoy watching film and TV shows as a hobby more so than mindless consumption. Really. Winter holiday is a solid month of time, enjoy it doing whatever you like: Knitting, Xbox, reading; it’s all up to you (yes, this is a shameless attempt to justify all the time I’ve wasted watching Netflix).
You might have noticed that I didn’t include things such as “prepare for the next semester!”, “exercise!”, “work on resume!” but I really, really, don’t want to be that guy. Enjoy the first few weeks of the new year comfortably and lazily. The work and busy schedule will resume soon enough.
Photo: Joe St.Pierre