Today is one of those grey, miserably wet days that makes me want to curl up into a cashmere-covered ball and watch old black and white movies all day. The problem, of course, is that I live in Vancouver, where it rains eight months out of the year. If I lived my life according to the weather report (which currently calls for seven straight days of rain), I would become a hermit crab and spend my weekends covered in cheeto crumbs.
Winter is finally winding down, which means those of us not living in California or Florida or the southern hemisphere just have to push through a couple more months of rain, slush and freak snowstorms. This is the hard part, where we can see the bright light at the end of the tunnel but the tunnel just seems so freaking long.
If, like me, you find yourself facing one too many rainy days, here are a few ideas to get you out of your snuggie and away from those Downton Abbey reruns. Put those (delicious) cheetos down. Come out and play.
Channel Your Inner Van Gogh
I’m no Matisse, but I enjoy the occasional foray into the painterly life. There’s an awesome painting/wine bar in Vancouver called Raw Canvas. I forget all about it in the summer, but come winter, a few
Attend (Or Host) a Secret Supper
I intend to devote an entire post to Secret Supper Clubs at some point–not only is it one of my favorite pastimes but it’s so interesting and fun and I want more people to get in on it. Secret Supper Clubs are popping up everywhere from San Francisco to New York to Austin to Paris. The one my friends and I regularly attend is called Swallowtail, and it’s run by the very cool Chef Robin. Every month or so, we receive an email outlining a fun theme along with the cost. We only find out the secret location the week before and the menu remains a secret right up until our arrival. We’ve attended dinners with a variety of cool themes: Speakeasy, Tiki, Alice in Wonderland, Where the Wild Things Are, Church of the Senses. Each one is unique and super yummy.
Hopefully you can find an underground or “secret” dinner club in your area. And if not, why not create your own? Come up with a theme, give your guests a few (but not too many) details and then get creative with the menu. For the Alice in Wonderland Theme, they served soup in glass beakers with tags that read “Drink Me,” hors d’oeuvres on broken china and a “cut your own” salad bar garden.
We host a monthly(ish) game night at our place where we play games ranging from Cranium to Pictionary to Cards Against Humanity. I make fun snacks, keep the wine flowing and it usually gets LOUD. It’s so much fun to watch people come out of their shells when faced with the ridiculous task of running around the room yelling “Rawhide” for a full minute or drawing a picture titled “E.T. Saves Christmas” (we can thank the game Quelf for those two gems). On one recent game night, we pulled out the classic game of Twister. The mat was much smaller than any of us remembered and we were all rolling on the floor laughing within minutes. It was the ultimate pick-me-up.
Take Over The Art/Science/History Museum
Vancouver museums host several night-time, adults only events throughout the year. There’s Science World After Dark, Fuse at The Art Gallery, and Night at the Aquarium to name a few. Most major cities have similar fun-times happening in their museums. It’s so cool to have free reign of what is usually a child-filled space. Suddenly, it’s the adults’ turn to race up the pulley system at the Science Museum and stare in awe at the Beluga whale, all while rocking out to an awesome band or watching some neat performance art. A quick google search will let you know what’s happening in your town.
Get Your Groupon On
Winter is the perfect time to buy (and actually use) Groupons. Don’t you ever look at those emails advertising macaron-making, pottery painting and bartending classes and think, “Hmm, maybe that would actually be fun…but when am I ever going to get around to it?” How about on a wet, miserable Tuesday night? You could stay inside flipping through your DVR, or you could learn to make awesome cocktails.
One rainy weeknight a few months ago, four friends and I took a bartending course where we learned to combine fruits, herbs and the strong stuff into delectable cocktails. Okay, delectable may be a strong word. My bartending partner and I decided to include a whole chilli pepper in our concoction, which promptly burned the mouths off of all of our classmates. But hey, way more exciting than watching “Top Chef”, right?
Go On An Adventure
One thing I’ve learned from living in a rainy climate: you will not melt. I’ve had some really interesting (uncrowded) walks in the rain. Most people are bundled up inside, so the city becomes your playground. What good are rainboots if you don’t use them to splash through a giant puddle now and then? Pick a new neighborhood or trail and go on a rainy day adventure!
What are some of your favorite rainy day activities? Do you prefer to stay in or do you brave the weather and seek out new adventures?