Because let’s face it: we’re all confused when we step outside.
It’s that time of year again. The radio has stopped playing holiday music; in neighborhoods near you, Christmas decorations are slowly disappearing off of houses; and students are getting ready to make their pilgrimage back to campus for the start of another semester. While people everywhere flock to gyms for their New Year’s resolutions, individuals still suffer under the reality that no resolution can fix the natural phenomenon we call Virginia Beach weather. On some days you can find yourself marveling at the crispness in the air during such a season, and on other more commonly known days, that wonder tends to get washed out by the rain storms that make their home here. The weather app on your phone may display the picture of a decent day, but as the hours go by you either find yourself perspiring under the heavy sweater you needed in the morning or freezing because of your choice to leave your jacket hanging in the closet.
When students come back to campus, it’s much more than just a return to academics, it’s a return to the unknown – daily fighting a battle against the elements of nature that refuse to fit the mold of consistency. Despite what the weather may or may not be, this is a battle you don’t have to lose every single day. There is still hope. Below are some ways current and former students have coped with the weather. If they have found a way to win, so can you.
Always check the weather anyway.
It may be right, or it may be wrong, but you can never fully prepare if you don’t know what to prepare for. Whether it’s your local meteorologist’s passionate take or simply Google, it’s important to gather all the information you can on what’s going on outside before you expose yourself to it. Candace Hackney (’18) makes sure to “always check the weather in the morning and the night before so [she] can plan [her] day around that.”
Err on the side of layering.
Since you don’t know for sure if the sun is going to stay out all day or if it suddenly starts to snow as if the invitation for a white Christmas got lost in the mail, it’s easier to deal with the ranging temperatures of the day when you have layers that can work with you and not against you. You can peel away a sweater or jacket with the warmer weather and just as easily put them back on at the slightest hint of a temperature drop. Liahna Woodard (’21) agrees that along with “having an open mind to whatever comes, layering is a must.”
Even if you think it’s going to be warm, keep a jacket in the car (and an umbrella, too).
Remember: you are facing the unknown when it comes to the weather, so you will not regret having these pieces ready whenever the day turns from hot and dry to cold and wet.
Whip out those essential oils your mom told you to use.
You might think essential oils are just a superficial sign of the times, but with the constant and sudden changes in climate, Woodard makes it clear that she could not fully cope with the weather without them. They can help you to relax from stress and also help you fight against colds as a result of temperature and seasonal changes.
This is a must not only for weather coping, but for college students in general. Coffee is great – and when infused with your favorite flavoring, even better. While coffee is a great thing to have on those rainy days and those late nights of final projects, papers and exams, it won’t help you as much as water when it comes to your health and the weather. There’s no thoughtful excuse you can come up with that would negate this fact. So once in a while look outside, think about the weather, and swap out your Venti Caramel Frappuccino for some water; your body will thank you.
Julia Selwyn is a contributor to the Daily Runner.