Kuwait summer equals travel. The country empties out and the next thing you know, our social media is flooded with gorgeous, inviting photos of blue Moroccan cities, mouthwatering street food from London, New York and Japan, green and lush Swiss mountains, Florida beaches, Lebanese cafes, Indian hill stations and trips along the Nile.
For those of us staying the summer in Kuwait, the long and hot months of July and August can seem almost unbearable. Temperatures will regularly top 50 degrees Celcius and spending any time outdoors except at the pool, especially during daylight hours, becomes impossible. At the same time, pretty much everything takes on a slower, sluggish pace and there are fewer events and activities to keep you distracted.
Despite all of this, I enjoy summer in Kuwait. Though I always look forward to traveling, even if only for a few weeks, I deliberately focus on all the positive aspects of summer in Kuwait. For instance, traffic suddenly becomes irrelevant. By July, most of those who plan to travel have left and the roads are practically empty. This can cut commutes by more than half for many of us who work all summer long.
Another great thing about summer in Kuwait is the slower pace of life. Some people may find this boring but especially if you have kids, a slower pace can be an absolute rejuvenator after a hectic and schedule-packed school year.
We all need the freedom and time to just be. The summer in Kuwait can provide this. Take a few days off work and just stay home and chill out. Read or take the kids for evening ice cream.
Kids and teens definitely need the freedom and relaxation away from all the pressures of school and afterschool activities. Summer can be a perfect opportunity for them to do a whole lot of nothing. Let them be bored. Yes, if you have younger children or even teens it’s almost guaranteed that they will bicker as the boredom factor rises.
But kids are resilient and will start thinking of ways to entertain themselves and engage their minds. So they may be bored for a bit and there will be a spike in sibling squabbles, but if you can wait it out and give them a chance to figure out on their own how to entertain themselves, you might be surprised what they create.
Once the boredom starts to overwhelm, it will be necessary to venture out and enjoy the growing list of things to do and family-friendly activities there are in Kuwait. Ice skating and swimming are perfect summer activities. Go to the movies or have a home movie night with homemade popcorn and snacks.
Summer is a great time to take a up a new hobby, sport or craft and there are literally hundreds of places in Kuwait that now offer workshops, classes and other opportunities for this. The whole family can take up tennis or attend a weekend yoga class. Local businesses offer a fun array of workshops on clay making, sewing and design, calligraphy, art, crochet and weaving, sculpting, design, robotics, coding and etc. There are also dozens of sports academies, local gyms and organizations that families can join to get fit and healthy while having fun this summer.
The fact of the matter is that Kuwait is a ‘what you make it’ kind of place. You can be miserable and grumble and suffer if that is what you prefer. Or you can find ways to take advantage of the positives, downplay the negatives and enjoy what summer in Kuwait does have to offer. The choice is up to you.
Jamie Etheridge is the founder of Kuwait Moms Guide, a mom of two, a writer and a determined optimist. For more, visit www.kuwaitmomsguide.com.