Jessica Written by
from Netherlands

MA Creative Writing and Publishing

Summer is around the corner! For us in Bournemouth that means lots of things. Lounging on the beach. Enjoying the long bright days. Having barbeques. Going for a swim in the sea. And, of course, go on that holiday you have been daydreaming about all year long. The downside to this summer season, however, is that COVID-19 may have put lots of things on hold.

Because of this, lots of our holidays have turned into a staycation. While that sounds dull at first, there are lots of ways you can have fun and keep busy while you are waiting for your travel opportunity!

 1 – Teach yourself how to cook

The beauty about cooking is that you can cook anything from anywhere in the world! Longing about that trip to Thailand that you never made? Cook a Thai green curry. Wishing you could be in Italy? Teach yourself how to make a homemade pizza. In my case, because I missed the Noodle Bar so much, I made a katsu curry (which was very tasty!).

Baking is also something fun to try out if you want to make your own snacks, or if you want to surprise others. Most recipes are easy to follow as well and it is a useful skill to learn, especially if you love chocolate… During lockdown  I taught myself to bake cakes, which made my family very happy and excited for these special days.

Cookbooks are the best I think, because you can look at it while cooking and not be worried about spilling something on your phone or laptop. But online resources like Mob Kitchen, BBC Good Food and Tasty are good to use too.

Marble Cake, photo by Jessica Grano de Oro

 

2 – Go on local trips

A staycation doesn’t mean you have to stay inside. See this as an opportunity to explore sides of your local town that you haven’t experienced before.

I currently live in Buckinghamshire, being in lockdown with my family, and we have gone on lots of hiking trips to the woods, where we saw a beautiful field of bluebells and lots of interesting wildlife. It feels like going into a whole different world and it gives you a chance to disconnect from your every day routine.

Bluebells Field, photo by Jessica Grano de Oro

Living in Bournemouth, you are very lucky when it comes to local trips, as it has the New Forest nearby, stretches of beach and lovely places like Corfe Castle and the Jurassic Coast. Of course, if you do go on local trips, don’t forget to stay safe and social distance.

Corfe Castle, photo by Jessica Grano de Oro

 

3 – Do some sports

If you feel you can’t cope with being inside, go out for a run, play football with your relatives, or follow a workout session online. It is a good way to keep yourself fit and keep your mind off things.

4 – Hang out with people

When my family and I were bored, we played lots of board games, croquet, did barbeques and had some film nights in between. It is also a chance to bond, since none of you are heading off to anywhere for a while, so why not spend time together? I think if it weren’t for those hang outs, I would have struggled more with lockdown.

Some of you are probably on your own, but thankfully lockdown is lifting! That means you can meet up with people and do fun things while you are keeping yourselves safe. We had a dinner with some relatives the other day, socially distanced in their garden, with a fire pit to keep everyone warm.

5 – Get creative

Try a new skill. Play an instrument. Learn a language with BU for when you make that fantastic trip. I have been painting a lot since I’ve always wanted to learn and I have tried to improve my Italian through Duolingo, since my trip to Italy got cancelled. Places like Coursera and SkillShare are also nice if you want to learn something new and you don’t know where to start.

Painting, photo by Jessica Grano de Oro

 

Hope these are good starting points to make your staycation enjoyable and get you excited for the adventure you’ll be on when lockdown lifts!

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