Author’s Note: I am definitely, certainly not writing from experience here. Absolutely, surely not.
If you’re planning on studying abroad for any lengthy period of time during your college years, you’ll likely need to procure a student visa. Before you can depart to whatever lovely foreign country you’ve chosen to take up residence in for a little while, the border agency of that lovely foreign country is going to try to suck both your money and your will to live right out of you. So if the thought of spending hours sifting through maddening bureaucratic paperwork terrifies you, have no fear. The following list is sure to keep you occupied while you stick it to those border agency hacks by ignoring your responsibilities completely.
- Go to the grocery store and buy a bunch of wedding magazines. Place them strategically around the house in places where your mom will casually find them. It’ll really freak her out.
- Look at some pictures of otters on this Japanese website: http://blog.kohan-studio.com/. If those adorable furry creatures don’t warm your heart, not even Spiderman can save you. It’s also funnier if you don’t let Google translate the page for you.
- Learn how to stand up paddle board because you saw Kenny Chesney do it in a music video and it looked cool.
- Make ridiculous hats out of newspaper and wear them while you sip English Breakfast Tea and watch the Royal Wedding. Bask in the glory of how much cooler your hat is than that one Princess Beatrice wore. Down with the monarchy!
- Count how many times Taylor Swift says “like” in that new song you can’t get away from.
- Lament to all social media outlets that you actually invested 3 minutes and 12 seconds of your life into counting how many times Taylor Swift says “like” in that new song you can’t get away from. (To save you the 3:12—it’s six times.)
- Grab some of your bored or procrastination-enabling friends and go on a road trip. If you’re in-state, check out the Natural Bridge in Rockbridge County, Virginia. The name is pretty self-explanatory, but it’s this place in a park where some limestone developed a natural arch and it’s a geological marvel or whatever. Also, Thomas Jefferson once said the Natural Bridge is “the most sublime of nature’s works.” So as a William and Mary student, you’re basically honor-bound to go there at some point.
- Call your grandma. It’ll probably make her day and, seriously, why not?
- Learn something new, preferably something not-at-all-under-any-circumstances useful. That’s what the school year is for! You work hard enough already! You could study Chinese or Arabic or Spanish and develop yourself a “marketable skill” that’s “desired in the work force,” but that’s far too prudent to be any fun. Learn Romanian! That’s a language that’s highly unlikely to ever prove relevant. Unless you’re studying abroad in Romania, that is.
- Make a stupid list for your blog.
Actually, now that I think of it, you could actually do all of these things before or after sending in your visa application. So, get off your bum and apply for your freaking visa already. You’re going to have to complete it sometime or another. It’s inevitable. So just get it out of the way so you can enjoy the hell out of your summer and not have to worry about rationalizing your poor life choices in the form of gimmicky lists on the Internet. Because if you don’t get your visa application done in a timely manner, then you run into a time crunch where you have to overnight it to the British consulate in New York City and pay $150 to expedite your application and your parents get mad at you and it’s just a grand pain. (I’d just like to underscore again here that I’m clearly, unequivocally not writing from personal experience.) Besides, think how many wedding magazines you could buy with that $150 you’re saving. That’s a lot of matriarchal freak-outs that you wouldn’t want to go to waste.