There’s only so much of a small town I can take. I go stir crazy if I don’t get out, and since I am the resident of quite a small town, I’ve had to get a little creative–and also use my imagination–in order to keep myself from getting cabin fever or landing myself in an asylum. So I’ve compiled a small list of things that you, too, can do to soothe your small town blues.
- Find another world you love. Find a good book or television show that you can really get into. When you feel a little stir crazy, just whip out your novel or get on Netflix [if internet is available] and take a journey to another world. Getting out of reality is also a nice break if you’re stressed.
- Take a road trip. Now, obviously this isn’t available to everyone. Road trips cost money and gas isn’t cheap right now [to say the least]. So go dutch with someone. Split the gas and just go to the nearest big town. Spend the day in a place you don’t actually live in. Those few hours of ‘escape’ can be such a relief. Plus, you’ll probably get some great stories and a least a tiny bit of driving experience.
- Find a new neighborhood in your town. For some reason, every time I go somewhere, I pass something I just haven’t ever noticed before. Sometimes, I get lost in my own town. Discovering new places where I live is like finding a new town in your old familiar haunting grounds.
- Go to the local pool or find a go-kart/bowling alley/etc. Finding something that’s cheap or free that doesn’t sound that exciting [bowling…not always a fun-sounding option] can be a welcome break from a routine or any kind of stay-at-home-monotony. Just get out of the house. Seriously.
- Have a game night with some friends. Invite your buds to hang out and ask them to bring their favorite board game or card game. I’ve done this a couple times in the past month and it’s serious fun. I’ve discovered a couple new games I didn’t even know existed, I’ve had more fun with Uno than I knew was possible as a twenty-something, and I’ve made a lot of new friends. I have friends who invite me to hang out with their friends. We become friends. They invite me out. I meet more friends. It’s a wonderful, never-ending cycle. Playing board games is fun, whether or not you think it can be–as long as you’re with the right people.
I’m not just going to leave you with that, however. Although those are some great options, I wanted to share five of my favorite board games with you. I’ve included a link to buy them and a short description [including, in some cases, my personal experience in playing them]. They’re all super fun, I promise.
- Settlers of Catan. This game is a strategy power struggle. You fight for territory, goods, and ultimately, the world [just kidding, but really]. I love this game, but it can take a while to finish, so be sure you’re not in Starbucks with only 45 minutes till closing when you play it.
- Ticket to Ride. This game is similar to Catan in that you’re fighting for control of territories on the board, but you’re building trains across the map. The goal is to have the most trains [or the longest] and therefore the most points. Although I stink at the strategy part of this game, I love cutting people off and making them reroute their little trains. t
- Moods. I just played this game for the first time last week and I had an absolute blast with it. The goal is to make it all the way around the board first by correctly emoting or guessing emotions. The hitch? The person [you or another player] expressing an emotion 1) doesn’t get to pick the emotion and 2) has to read a sentence from a random card. It’s a test of acting and empathy.
- Quelf. I’ve heard so many amazing things about this game. It’s apparently the most embarrassing game to play but hilarious and memorable. I’ve seen people playing it and laughed as hard as them just watching, so I can’t imagine that playing it wouldn’t be more fun. Don’t ask me the rules; I really don’t understand them, and as I hear, they can change depending on the players and the set up.
- Bohnanza. Fondly nicknamed by my friends and I as the ‘bean game,’ this game makes you barter and ‘plant’ beans in order to earn coins. At the end of the game, most coins wins. Although it sounds weird, this game is awesome and a good one for fierce competitors–or kids who need to learn to share, since you really have to rely on others to win [at some points].
Anyways. With only a couple weeks of summer left, I’m sure you’re as restless as I am. I hope these hints and these games help.
I’m off to the mall, just back from a road trip, and playing board games later this week, so at least you know I’m taking my own advice.