February Vacation

By Andrea Staples

    The anticipation is building amongst Oyster River High School’s student body as they count the days until they will be rewarded with a week of no 6:00 a.m. alarms, no stress, and most importantly: no school.

     February break is right around the corner and some students plan on laying on the endless white beaches of the Bahamas, enjoying a glass of refreshing iced lemonade and having a tube of sunscreen attached to their hip. However, other students who are stuck here in New Hampshire may find themselves cocooned in a fuzzy blanket with some hot cocoa in their hand, mindlessly streaming Netflix for hours on end.

     For the student who’s spending vacation sleeping in until 12:00 p.m. and only getting up to change into a new pair of pajamas, what will you be doing to show that you can still have fun in New Hampshire? Even though you’ll scroll through Instagram and see numerous pictures of people posting about their tropical destinations, you can easily have just as much fun without spending thousands of dollars on a vacation.

     ORHS students have high expectations for themselves in school, and although you should do something fun on vacation, Cammie Waterhouse (‘16) suggests taking some days for yourself. “Self care is such an important part of mental and physical health. Taking a day or two to do exactly what you want can help your well being immensely,” says Waterhouse who further noted that after you take a few mental health days you should try the new restaurant coming to Durham: Lexie’s Joint. “Just try to have fun and enjoy the moment; we are all only in high school for four years,” says Waterhouse.

     Anson Thibault (‘17) also noted that time is limited in high school stating: “you won’t be able to see your friends all the time once out you’re of high school so I would take advantage by hanging out with friends and doing what you like.”

     Alex Szymanski (‘17) said that if he wasn’t going to spend his vacation looking at colleges in Washington, D.C. he would “try and relax and take time to do the things that I can’t during the school year.”

     There can be a perfect balance between your relaxing time laying in bed and doing something that you wouldn’t usually do every weekend. Even though we live in New Hampshire, there are numerous fun activities over break that I would highly suggest.

     Every day until February 29th, outdoor ice skating is available at the Labrie Family Skate Puddle Dock Pond at Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth. You can take lessons, or just skate with some friends. It’s offered from 9:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., and is free on specific times on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

If you’re making the trip out to downtown andrea1.jpgPortsmouth, I highly suggest making your
way over to La Maison Navarre, a french pastry shop for delicious macarons. “I love how it’s [macaron] soft on the inside but crunchy on the outside. It’s the perfect meringue that goes well with a ganache filling. My favorite part is the almond flour it really gives the macaron a taste you can’t forget,” says Alana Saravong (‘15).

     If you’re looking for some more adventure, take a trip out to Boston on any Saturday or Sunday during break for the Back Bay Chocolate Walking Tour (sign up online here). You’ll not only learn how high end gourmet chocolate is created, but also get several taste tests at different locations throughout Back Bay. There are numerous restaurants in Boston, so while you’re there get some amazing lunch and go shopping in Harvard Square.

     My least favorite question when people find out I am from New Hampshire is whether I ski or snowboard, and the answer is neither! I have never been, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t too late to try new things. There are several places such as Gunstock or Sunday River, but usually you’ll have to drive a bit to get there. If you happen to be at Sunday River on andrea2February 24th, you can enjoy some fireworks above the South Ridge at 8:30 p.m. after a long day on the mountain. “I always enjoy skiing at Sunday River. They have a nice
amount of snow in the woods, which is where I love to ski. The park crew also does a really nice job. The only bad part of Sunday River is there are always long lift lines,” says Lou Leroux (‘17).

     Whatever you end up doing, whether vacationing or just seeing friends and family, make the most of your vacation as it’ll go by faster than you think.