Seemingly hundreds of films glamorize summer. But, now in August, friends had traveled to Italy, whereas my own travels have ended—and fall’s productivity will soon be on my mind. There are plenty of activities to do in this town, but I look for things to do quietly in solitude. Here are three that worked for me, and maybe you’ll want to try them too.
FLOWERS: Our town is adorned with beautiful flowers, many thanks to Westport Parks and Rec and garden clubs. Thanks to these various blooms, I was inspired to search for wildflowers to pick. It worked. Flower picking became increasingly meditative as I hiked Greenacre Park, flowers in hand, eager to return home and dry them out. The way to get the most use out of them is to dry them out. This can be done by hanging the flowers upside down by their stems, secured with a rubber band. Depending on the flower type, this will take three to five days. The dried petals can be a naturally gorgeous addition to your bath or, if tied into a bouquet, as a gift for a friend.
SEWING: My second suggestion comes from a walk along Sasco Hill Beach. I approached a fellow beachcomber to compliment her beautiful dress. In all black, it had the common shell known as Mermaid Toenails hanging from hem. I asked her where it was from, and she replied that it was her own design. That day I began to collect Mermaid Toenails, which are luminescent, in variations of yellow, orange and gray, and in an oval shape. They are pretty as homemade jewelry or as a bit of sparkle on a dress. Use a hole puncher, then string the shell through a necklace, craft a bracelet or get out the sewing kit to add a pop of color to an item of clothing.
MUSIC: The final recommendation is learning the guitar. Mine, a gift from my father, was sitting in the corner of my living room as a decoration piece. It had gone untouched, even though I can read music. After a few hours of frustration attempting to learn the basics via YouTube and even a child’s guitar lesson book from a friend, I texted a friend who is the drummer of Westport’s TweedSugar. He advised me to just play around with the chords until he returned from vacation to teach me. This was when I really began to enjoy playing. I found myself, hatchback open, looking out at Compo beach playing and singing a song I already knew and enjoying it. I still need lessons, but I also worked up to writing my dad a song for his birthday and posting it on Instagram. I figured that there is no way to do it wrong if you are just trying to enjoy yourself.
Funny thing about trying new activities—as summer comes to end, I will soon miss having time for them.