When we pine for summer fun all year long, our collective imaginations are filled with images of legendary pool parties, weekends by the lake, and other aquatic activities. But what about those relentlessly hot days when you’re too broke to swim or don’t have a swanky pool hookup? Well, we at LD have been there and have assembled a list of creative and inexpensive ways to stay cool even without a pool.
1. Hang out at your local bookstore
If you have a Barnes & Noble nearby or another local spot that has a cafe area, head over there for a few hours to cool off in their AC. If it’s a local place, make sure you at least buy a cup of joe to earn your keep. Then pick up some magazines or that new novel you’ve been eyeing, and enjoy some cool down time.
2. Flip through racks at a Goodwill or local thrift store
If you’re low on cash or otherwise, checking out the bargains and sales at thrift stores can always be fun, especially with a good group of friends. Whether you buy anything or not, trying on clothes (whether current or retro) can be a good time. Not to mention looking around at clothes and home goods can be a good place to harvest decorating ideas. Either way, an inexpensive [window] shopping trip keeps you out of the heat and surrounded by friends.
3. All the drinks
Gin gimlet. Arnold Palmer. Iced coffee. Cucumber water. Hey, it’s important to stay hydrated, right? Pick your poison, find some breezy shade, and lounge.
4. Invest in a fan
Air conditioning can be a harsh mistress—a fan will help you feel cooler AND have a lower electricity bill. If you don’t have a ceiling fan and/or have a fear of it crashing down on you while you sleep, invest in an oscillating fan with a remote so your lazy ass doesn’t have to get up more than absolutely necessary. A wet washcloth behind your neck also works wonders.
Bookstores and coffee shops are great, but a lot of libraries have whole areas for you to sit and read or steal their wifi and watch “The West Wing.” A lot of libraries will let you bring a drink in or have a cafe for when you need to get a snack. Use someone else’s AC and wifi for a change!