Wild Escape for Spring Break

Author: Julia Oksasoglu


Spring Break simply can’t come soon enough. Not to intimidate you, but I’ll be heading to the coast for a crazy week — if you’ve never done it before, you should call off whatever lame plans you have now and follow in my footsteps. The bonds you cultivate last a lifetime, the food you eat is remarkable, and the memories you make are unforgettable (well … most of them).

There’s nothing like sitting on the beach taking selfies and sippin’ a cold one with your best friend, chilling by the water with laughter and pictures filling the day, only to head inside in the evening to where the real action happens. There’s nothing like taking a bite out of a brownie, not knowing exactly what’s in it, but knowing that the next few hours will be a relaxing blur of chocolate and paradise. And, of course, there’s nothing quite like getting dehydrated from being so swept away by the excitement of the day that you forget to keep drinking water. Just thinking about it, I know I need to be getting my body in shape because it’s always wrecked after a week of such sybaritic extravagance.

I can’t wait for the countless times we’ll wake up in the morning, not even remembering the night before — we’ll probably spend at least an hour trying to piece together “You’ve Got Mail,” which we started the previous night and both fell asleep 15 minutes into, despite Grandma thinking Tom Hanks is a veritable hunk. Man, I just can’t stop daydreaming about pulling into the driveway and seeing Grandma’s favorite Virgin Mary statue sitting next to the aloe vera plant that she uses for her homemade foot cream. Plus, northern Michigan is beautiful in early March, so I can’t imagine anyone going to a better destination spot for the break.

Grandma’s unbeatable lemonade goes perfectly with the Lake Michigan sunsets, and every time I head up to her quaint little town, she spoils me with her absolutely divine caramel fudge brownies. I never remember to bring my water bottle along when we go to the aquarium, and it’s a whole town over, so there’s no going back to get it. Even if the pufferfish almost ruin the day by never swimming out of their coves, coming home and laying my head on the “I spoil my grandkids” embroidered pillow that Grandma made for my sweet 16 party makes it all worthwhile.

The craziest thing is, all my friends at ND are doing the same thing! In high school, I was always the only one going to see my Grams, but in college, the Notre Dame community really does stick together. I was worried people wouldn’t think I was “cool” for visiting Nana Jeanie for the week, but everyone else keeps talking about PCB over Spring Break too — I didn’t realize that everyone else’s grandma also makes them Peanut butter Chocolate Banana sandwiches!!!! It’s so nice to finally feel at home here.

Every blonde needs a greying best friend, and I’ve certainly found mine. If you need to reach me this week, don’t even bother texting; there’s no way I’ll be able to feel my phone vibrate under seven hand-knitted afghans. Notre Dame, I’ll see you soon, but until then, here’s to a wild week full of blaring Elvis Presley (Grandma can’t hear it at anything less than maximum volume), eating my favorite foods at Golden Corral and watching a lifetime’s worth of “Lifetime” movies.