Viewpoint: Play on, but be safe

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Sunshine, sandals, slurpees and safety

Despite the weather’s best efforts to keep summer away, today marks the first day of the glorious season.

It may have something to do with the fact that a Georgia girl can barely survive Utah winters, but I’ve been looking forward to this moment for a long time.

I plan on breaking out my summery sandals (as long as the rain stays away) and enjoying the bright yellow rays of the sun before it melts my Slurpee.

I plan on throwing on a swimsuit (one piece of course) and making the biggest splash I possibly can in the nearest pool.

I plan on using the once chilling snow resorts to hike through some of the most beautiful mountain landscape I have ever seen in my life.

I have some pretty amazing summer plans, if I do say so myself.

However, as all you Cougars start making your amazing summer plans, I want to somber you for a moment.

We’ve had more rain than usual, later snow and a lot of melting.

This means the creeks are like streams, the streams are like rivers and the rivers are raging.

What used to be safe and secure now rushes with riptides and rapids.

The banks, once secure and solid, have disappeared under gallons of rushing water, leaving soft edges that peel away with the lightest step.

If this isn’t enough of a warning, please remember those lives we lost only two weeks ago — three in three days according to the Deseret Morning News.

Those aren’t small numbers.

As college students, we all know how much fun it is to get a laugh. We do silly things to either entertain or impress our friends. Sometimes these silly things get out of hand.

Don’t let them get dangerous.

We can have fun hanging out at the river, we can party with friends, flirt with ward members, swim in a pool and stay up all night long, but nothing you do is worth the risk of losing your chance to enjoy every summer after this one.

So don’t horseplay in lakes, don’t play Chicken Fight in rivers. Don’t ATV off mountain cliffs or cliff jump into stony waters.

Remember raised water means hidden rocks and covered islands. It’s not the same lake you boated in last year, not the same river you traveled down last summer.

On a lighter note, if you take precautions, it can be a more fun summer than you’ve ever had.

Try something new. My parents just took up fly-fishing. They say it’s a blast, something they love to do.

I’m still waiting for them to do some fly catching, but maybe you’ll have more luck.

Spend some time outdoors and enjoy the weather. Whatever you do, don’t take it for granted — it will be gone soon.

Go to the hiking trails. Whether you’re a runner, a hiker or an “I’d rather walk” kind of person, enjoy the time you have now to see the stunning landscapes of Utah.

You don’t have to go far, though a trip down south could be fun. Just outside BYU’s back door lie impressive stopping grounds for both the adventurers and those who want to be.

Mostly though, meet some people, make some friends and visit one of those random snow cone places popping up all over town.

(There’s a really nifty one shaped like a root beer mug up Provo Canyon. I’ve never been there, but it looks fun.)

So, from all of us here at The Daily Universe, have some fun, wear some sunscreen and remember to be safe — because no joke is worth not being here to make another one tomorrow.

Allison Goett is the opinion editor for The Daily Universe. This viewpoint represents her opinion and not necessarily that of The Daily Universe, BYU, its administration or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

 

 

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