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The North Wind

The North Wind

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Amelia Kashian
Amelia Kashian
Features Editor

Being passionate is one of the best parts of being human, and I am glad that writing has helped me recognize that. I have been writing stories since I was a little girl, and over...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

OPINION — Sometimes you don’t have to do anything over the summer

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Harry Stine
VACATION — A photo of me standing on the breakwall this summer. Since I’ve accepted that I only want to go on a vacation when I feel like it, I’ve enjoyed my summers much more.

Summer has ended and the semester has begun. As we all get used to our new schedules, I hear plenty of people share some fun vacation stories. Whether it was visiting some friends across the country, going on a trip overseas or raging at a festival, it seems there was endless opportunity for fun this summer.

But not if you talked to me. If you were to ask me what I did this summer, I would tell you that I worked most nights, jogged so much I got shin splints twice and had Dungeons and Dragons sessions that trailed into the wee hours of the morning. I never left town, I never adopted a new hobby and I never felt bored. I could not have asked for a better break.

I didn’t always feel this way. The simple ways I would spend my break used to bother me, especially as a freshman. I would hear about more exciting and adventurous breaks and feel self-conscious. “Am I spending my college years well? Am I interesting enough? Am I … boring?” I used to wonder.

But as time has passed and I’ve spent more time planning vacations and traveling, I’ve learned that I don’t really enjoy it. I am too introverted to share a car with others for hours on end, and the very thought of flying fills me with dread. If I took a vacation today, I would think about a billion things I need to get done, and how much damage I’d be doing to my ever-shrinking bank account.

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Instead, I’ve found that the occasional road trip by myself is all I need. I learned this by willfully destroying my car by dragging it across long stretches of highway during my junior year. One of the best days I’ve had on spring break was when I drove to Green Bay and back in one day for Popeye’s chicken and a trip to Barnes & Noble. Vacations are fun when you actually want to go on them.

So, I decided to stop feeling anxious about living simple over the summer. I shouldn’t compare myself to others and how they like to spend their free time. In fact, I like my schedule quite a bit without classes in it. It gives me time to enjoy the little things. Being in my last semester of college, a simple summer felt like a taste of the outside world. If adulthood gives me this much free time, then maybe working for the rest of my life might not be so bad after all. 

If you were “boring” this summer, don’t feel bad. Maybe you’re just a little introverted, and that’s okay. Or maybe going to work and hanging out with friends was enough of a vacation to you, and that’s also okay. I feel like we often see college as a final marker of youth, and that once you graduate, you’re expected to do a lot more, and have your life in much better order. It was this summer that I started thinking that doesn’t sound too bad. Besides, it’s not like we’ll all turn 30 the second we graduate.

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About the Contributor
Harry Stine
Harry Stine, Opinion Editor
In 2021, after one year of college and a semester of studying as a Public Relations major, I realized I wanted to be a journalist and not much else. After eagerly applying to be a Copy Editor, without even knowing AP style at that point, I started doing the occasional contributing writer piece for The North Wind. My frequent topic was satire. When I heard The North Wind was going through another round of hires, and a spot was open for an Assistant Features Editor, I applied in a heartbeat. I still do the occasional satire piece, but I take great pride in exploring NMU and Marquette for my topics, and finally having my head wrapped around AP style.