Summer is a special time that makes the inner romantic in all of us swoon, the poets drool, the songwriters croon. After all, who doesn’t love sand in their toes, mason jars filled with fireflies, and the knowledge that the sun won’t set until 9:00 p.m.?
And yet, even sodas and pretzels and beer start to get a little old after a while. As beautiful as summer is, here are 5 end-of-summer mishaps that might actually make you glad for the upcoming change of season.
1. Your AC unit blows
The scenario: You’re at home, pleasantly basking in the artificial breeze of the air conditioning. Finally, you can curl up on the couch fully clothed without feeling like you’re being baked in Lucifer’s oven. But, alas, something terrible happens — your air conditioning unit gives out with a sad whimper.
The solution: Weep gently, producing just enough tears to keep you cool (but not so many that you overexert yourself and break an even bigger sweat). Then call an AC repairperson to fix the problem ASAP. Another tip: to help save on your electricity bill, keep your thermostat at a solid 78 degrees when you’re at home, but let the temperature rise during the hours you’re away and don’t need cooling.
2. You’re covered in bug bites
The scenario: You’re outside, enjoying a brewski with your buddies. You’re enjoying yourself so much, in fact, that you fail to notice the swarm of mosquitoes feasting on your face. When you wake up in the middle of the night, scratching yourself with the ferocity of a wild mountain cat, you look in the mirror and find a constellation of angry welts large enough to make a leper feel like a newborn babe.
The solution: Avoid marshy spaces or other dark, swamp-like places that might attract mosquitoes. And keep the bug spray handy. Once you’ve been bitten, run an oatmeal bath. If you have an antihistamine stick or cream, apply that on the spot. If not, a green tea bag can help with the inflammation and itching.
3. The burn to end all sunburns
The scenario: You’re on the beach. There are certain errrr, exposed parts that haven’t seen the sun since last summer. But, you don’t need to put on sunscreen just yet, right? How else will you get the color you so desperately need? Then you hear a crack and a sizzle. You smell something burning. Hold on, you’re burning ….
The solution: Aloe vera, ice packs, and a (friendly) reminder to always use sunscreen — the tan is so not worth the skin damage or the lobster belly. Read up on these home remedies for sunburn (spuds to the rescue!).
4. Your million-degree car
The scenario: Not to beat a dead horse, but you’re sweating. You’re rushing across the parking lot, anxious to open your car door and taste that sweet nectar of AC. But, before this euphoria can begin, you must endure the fires of Mordor that is your car.
The solution: Remember that aluminum-foil window shield that’s been rolling around under your seat forever? Use it! And, of course, try to park in the shade if you can. Also, keep a small towel in your car to place over the steering wheel while you’re parked (it’s even great for unexpected spills).
5. The overly crispy BBQ mishap
The scenario: You’re hanging out with your aforementioned buddies (and the aforementioned brewski) and you decide that the time is ripe for a good old-fashioned summer BBQ complete with tri-tip, hot dogs, hamburgers, and the works. All of a sudden, you notice that your burgers are a bit more flame broiled than you’d imagined. Oh wait, that’s because the entire BBQ is up in flames.
The solution: Controlled flare-ups are one thing, but when your flare-ups have a mind of their own, they can be downright scary. Remember to keep an eye on your grill at all times and to make sure it’s extra clean before you start so you can avoid unwanted crispiness (on your burgers and your hair). Have some baking soda on hand before you start grilling, just in case. And always have a fire extinguisher at the ready in the event things get really out of control.
Summer’s a magical time of year, especially when you know how to protect yourself from those pesky summer mishaps. Also worth protecting? Your home, your car, your bike, and all those summer toys like jet skis and boats. Then you really can have a carefree summer.