So it’s finally summer. No more classes, no more waking up early, no more endless hours in the library. Only sunshine, sleeping late, and partying with hometown friends. But being away from college can be bittersweet. There is nothing better than not having to touch a pen or piece of paper for three full months, but the whole college social scene is something to be missed.
Keeping up with your college friends during the summer can be a good way to recreate all of those crazy things you did last year. Or, if you don’t actually have a chance to see your friends in person, at least reminisce about them. Not everyone is good at long-distance communication, but you can bet that your college friends won’t appreciate it too much if you don’t try to connect with them over the summer, while simultaneously posting all over Facebook how happy you are to be home, how you hope the summer never ends, and how fun it is to be reunited with your hometown buddies. If you do this, you can bet that your college friends won’t be all that excited to hang out with you and let you drink all their beer once the school years starts again. So here are some different and relatively simple ways to keep in touch with friends:
Group Facebook messages: Creating a message between you and some of your close friends is a quick and easy way to stay in touch. You can share stories with and ask questions to all of your friends at the same time, rather than individually posting on all of their walls. A group message also allows you to post all of the stuff that you might not want your friend’s mom to see written on his wall. As the summer draws to a close, this type of communication is especially good in that you can start to plan epic adventures for when you get back to campus.
Skype: Set up an account and talk to your friends face-to-face. This way you can actually tell you friends things, rather than try to text them out, saving you about a thousand text messages and all of the frustration that comes from autocorrect.
Google+: Why on earth would you want a sub-par Facebook substitute? Because on Google+ you can do group “hangouts”, which is much more fun than it sounds. Basically, you can video chat with a bunch of your friends all at the same time. This can be a lot more entertaining than a one-on-one Skype, plus you can include friends that you want to talk to, but might not want to have a potentially awkward individual video chat with. Additionally, there is an option for special effects, enabling you to chat with your friends while sporting a full beard and an eye patch.
Face-to-Face (Yes, this type of social interaction does still exist):
Visit: If you live close enough, go visit a friend. Maybe pick up another friend along the way and make it into a road trip (and be sure to make them split the gas bill and snacks with you). Have a job? Just go for the weekend (or whatever your day off is). A short amount of time is better anyways—long enough to catch up, but not long enough to feel like a mooch. Don’t have a car? Invite your friends to come visit you!
Meet halfway: Friend lives too far away/don’t feel like driving? Pick a city somewhere between your place and your friends and plan to meet there for a day visit, or you could even make a night of it and get a cheap hotel room.
Plan a Trip: If you don’t want to visit each other, plan a trip with some friends—whether its to New York City for a few days or Paris for a few weeks, vacationing with friends is almost always a good time. But be prepared for how quickly the costs associated with such an adventure tend to add up…
Mail: Not into social media and too short on cash for a trip or visit? Send a letter or a post card. Even something that simple is a great way to remind your friends that you are thinking of them and can’t wait to see them again in the fall. Plus, who doesn’t love getting stuff in the mail?
Phone: No, I don’t mean the telephone (who still uses that!?) I mean an iPhone. Start up games on your iPhone (or iPad or iPod touch) like DrawSomething or WordswithFriends, in which you can remind your friends of your existence by wasting countless hours of your time doing stupid things like trying to draw cowgirls and an Avatar on a 3-inch screen.