The summer holidays have begun and after the stress and toils of the exams and the whole academic year, it is now time for students to relax and have some fun. Most have planned their itinerary for the holidays and those who haven’t; there are loads of different activities that are on offer. From summer camps to outstation trips, students in the state are all set to make the best of the holidays while beating the oppressive heat. NT KURIOCITY finds out what the youngsters have planned for the sizzling months ahead
MARIA FERNANDES | NT KURIOCITY
“With the unbearable heat, all I want to do is stay in a place where there is an air conditioner. I want to unwind and just relax. Throughout the year, with my hectic schedule, that includes tuitions, extra classes, etc. I hardly get time to myself. This will be my final year in college and I want to enjoy my free time as much as possible because after that it will be work, work and more work,” says Simona D’Cruz, a SYBCom student. Sadly the holidays haven’t begun for all students; some are still attending extra classes, like Shrishti Bakshi who will be in standard XII in the next academic year. “My holidays will begin from May 1 and when it does, all I want to do is sleep and wake up late. Then in the afternoons my friends and I have planned watching movies and just chilling with each other.” For most of those going to standard XII, extra classes, tuitions and studies seem to occupy a great chunk of their time and who can blame them. “Even though I will not have any more classes in May, I have tuitions that will continue throughout the holidays. I will get a break for a week but I still intend to study during the mornings and relax in the evenings when it is slightly cooler. Maybe play badminton with my friends or go to the beach,” says Michelle Furtado.
The beach is a favourite spot for those who live close to one. “We go to the beach in the mornings and evenings,” says Nigel Pinto a resident of Miramar. “Besides volleyball, we play cricket and Frisbee and it is loads of fun. On the beach due to the breeze it is pleasant but of course after 8.30 a.m. we don’t stay out, as the heat starts getting too much,” he adds.
To beat the heat, many have plans for an outstation trip. “We mostly go to Coorg or Ooty or other hill stations for a fortnight’s holiday and this year, with the heat driving everyone crazy, we plan to stay even longer,” adds Nikhil Pai, a standard VIII student who is going to Manali with his family. “I have planned a road trip to North India with my friends. We are four of us and have two Bullets (bikes), and want to cover as many places as possible. We had planned this trip for more than a year and have saved accordingly. Initially my parents were reluctant to grant me permission but I have convinced them and told them I would be in touch twice a day and let them know my whereabouts,” shares Samaresh Patnaik, a final year BA student. The lure of travel, fuelled by colourful pictures on Facebook and Instagram not forgetting the numerous travel blogs; and finding picturesque and far-flung places, packing a rucksack and taking off is becoming quite irresistible to some youngsters. “In Goa itself we see so many young tourists from international shores coming to visit India but sadly we do not see much of Indian youngsters abroad,” opines Raghav Shetye a young entrepreneur who loves to travel and has been to Ukraine, Bulgaria and Russia. “With a little bit of planning and some research for cheap travel and accommodation, making a trip abroad or to other parts of the country is not difficult. And with Airbnb it is getting better.”
For the younger ones and for those whom travel is not possible, summer camps or hobby classes are the answer. Not only do you get to learn a new skill, sport but also meet new people, make friends and have fun besides keeping oneself occupied. “My parents are working so they prefer that I am busy throughout the day and have enrolled me for summer hobby classes. This year I will be learning glass painting and conversational Portuguese,” says 12-year old Naomi D’Souza. “Every year I join the summer camp at my school and learn something new while having fun with my friends who also join the camp. This year, I will be learning table tennis,” informs 11-year-old Mark a Panaji resident. After he finishes his TT classes, Mark does not go home immediately but hangs around with his friends and chat or just chill, as he says.
“The best place to chill if you love books is the Central Libray,” says 16-year Naina Pillai.”I can sit there for hours together and not want to come home. Also the cool temperature there is a big bonus along with the unbelievable number of amazing books.”
The options for spending summer holidays today are much more and yet there are some who complain and say they are bored! “We never had any of these options that children have today, yet we had amazing times. Vacations meant aaji’s place. I along with my brother and sister went to our grandparent’s house in Quepem and spent time with our innumerable cousins who also visited at the same time. Running in the fields, playing hide-and-seek in the afternoons in the big ancestral house and of course eating all the summer fruits was what my summers were made of,” reminisces Pratiksha Dessai, a mom. “Today however, my son gets bored even with all the gadgets he has.”
For many like Rasika and her brother, summer vacation means watching television and loads of movies besides surfing the internet. “I can spend the whole day with my friends playing internet games or on my play station. We don’t have to go out and suffer in the heat nor do we have to spend money. In the evenings we go outside and play football or cricket,” says 13-year old Steve Fernandes.
Besides catching up with friends, relaxing and trips, there are some who are utilise their holidays to learn and earn. “For the first week or two of the holidays, I am fine but then I start getting completely bored. Since I intend joining the hospitality industry, I will be interning at my dad’s friends restaurant. I did it last year and enjoyed it and the tips I got too were a bonus,” shares Danielle Gomes.
Summer is the time to relax, recharge your batteries and have fun! A word of caution though; don’t let the sun spoil your fun. So cover yourself, use sun block and drink plenty of water.