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IT’S THE FIRST DAY OF SUM­MER WHICH MEANS SUN, SURF, SUN­SCREEN AND A WHOLE LOT OF TOURISTS. HOW­EVER, THE SEA­SON BRINGS A WARM SENSE OF NOS­TAL­GIA

Life & Style Weekend - - OUR SAY -

DAVE

Bees will buzz, kids will blow dan­de­lion fuzz and I’ll be do­ing what­ever snow does in “thum­mer”. Yes, like Olaf from Frozen, by favourite sea­son is “thum­mer”... sum­mer. It has to be the hap­pi­est sea­son of all, es­pe­cially here on the Sunshine Coast, be­cause this is the time of year all of the Coast’s best fea­tures are high­lighted. Sum­mer is when our re­gion comes alive: long days at the beach, surf­ing, swim­ming and fam­ily time. There are a few ac­tiv­i­ties that I love do­ing only in sum­mer. The first one is the hum­ble slip and slide. Find a hill, grab some tarp, spread out some dish­wash­ing liq­uid, turn on the tap and slide away. Yes, all of these things are the per­fect recipe for break­ing a bone but it’s cer­tainly worth it. The sec­ond sum­mer ac­tiv­ity would have to be any­thing beach-re­lated. Not to brag, but we have a jet ski. Even though it gets no use for the rest of the year, sum­mer is when the old girl fi­nally gets a run. The best ex­pe­ri­ence I’ve had on the ski was one time when a whale swam un­der­neath me, fol­lowed by two dol­phins rid­ing waves next to me. The worst ex­pe­ri­ence I’ve had was be­ing stranded for six hours in Pu­mice­s­tone Pas­sage and hav­ing to be res­cued by the won­der­ful team at Caloun­dra Coast Guard. That was fun. Not. The last thing that I love do­ing in sum­mer is head­ing to the shops and em­brac­ing all the free air-con on of­fer. It’s a life hack: don’t use your own power, peo­ple. Head to the new plaza, find a nice, cosy spot out­side a shop and start peo­ple-watch­ing.

SAM

Sum­mer on the Sunshine Coast is like Bert and Ernie, like ying and yang, and like sar­dines and cus­tard… wait… what? What I am say­ing is that the Sunshine Coast is built for sum­mer. Our coastal life­style –owing to the many beaches, boom­ing tourist trade and café cul­ture – has set us up as one of Aus­tralia’s most-beloved des­ti­na­tions, and we get to live here. Now let’s be hon­est, it’s pretty amaz­ing al­lyear round, but there is some­thing spe­cial about sum­mer. Maybe it’s the prom­ise of Christ­mas, the ex­tended hol­i­day break or that the water at one of our 30-plus beaches is swimmable into the early evening. Or maybe it’s our re­laxed so­phis­ti­ca­tion with lessons learned from the con­crete clus­ter jumble that is the Gold Coast that makes sum­mer on the Sunny Coast so spe­cial. Back in the early ’80s, sum­mer was this: early morn­ings stuff­ing your face with Vegemite toast be­fore stuff­ing the Holden wagon with kids – all of them armed with beach gear. Af­ter setting up um­brel­las and tow­els, it was swim time, dodg­ing Eric’s cata­ma­rans as they screamed around the bay. Hours later, you might get a spray tan from the man who was three-parts-leather him­self or a hair­cut on the sand from a top­less Mary. The air smelled of co­conut oil and salt and the fre­quent waft­ing good­ness of fish and chips smoth­ered in vine­gar. The $2 worth of fish and chips wrapped in news­pa­per would feed a fam­ily a five, and at the end of the day you would re­treat to your homes and ap­ply slices of cut tomato to your third-de­gree sunburn.

ASH

It’s time to dust off the biki­nis, find your board­ies and sift through the clut­tered garage to find the boo­gie boards be­cause sum­mer is here, baby! The Sunshine Coast is the per­fect setting for sum­mer. Each year, we wel­come the sea­son with such ex­cite­ment and then it seems like a sad de­par­ture, be­cause that means it’s a good five months with­out a beach trip. There’s noth­ing I love more than spend­ing sum­mer by the beach – the smell of sun­screen, salt­wa­ter and sweat. I know that sounds creepy, but there’s some­thing about this sea­son that just makes me so happy. Our usual weekend on a hot sum­mer’s day in­cludes ba­con and eggs for brekky, then we lather up the sun­screen for a fun filled morn­ing at the beach. We take the surf­boards out and at­tempt to surf. Just off Coolum is our favourite spot. Then once we’ve had enough sun, it’s back home to have a swim in the pool (af­ter we spend an hour try­ing to in­flate our gi­ant flamingo). Once we’re water-logged, it’s ham rolls and a can of Coke for lunch. We set­tle in for some cricket on the TV, and later in the af­ter­noon, we munch on cheese and bis­cuits. The day is fin­ished off with a night swim in the pool, round­ing off the per­fect sum­mer evening. I love the start of sum­mer, in par­tic­u­lar, be­cause there aren’t many rainy days, just a few late thun­der­storms. I love wrap­ping the Christ­mas presents while there is a storm on, un­til the lights go out, of course. Sum­mer has be­gun peo­ple and we’re in for a good time. Slip, slop and slap!

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