The calendar won’t officially declare summer’s arrival for another month or so, but with the May long weekend now in the history books, the season is, for all intents and purposes, under way.
Weekend camping trips, days at the beach, long afternoons spent lounging on patios and scenic day hikes give Lower Mainlanders plenty to look forward to as the mercury climbs.
But summer is also a time to take a bit of extra care on a number of potentially hazardous fronts.
We’ve already had plenty of reminders this spring of Mother Nature’s destructive abilities as we’ve watched wildfires tear through parts of northern B.C. and send 80,000 people fleeing from their homes in Fort McMurray.
That doesn’t mean we won’t see people flicking cigarette butts out car windows and ignoring campfire bans.
Short of reporting such dangerous activities, there’s really nothing we can or should do, unless we’re willing to risk a nasty confrontation.
And let’s face it, people who are willing to risk lives and property for the sake of their own pleasure or convenience don’t care what you think.
All we can do is modify and monitor our own behaviour, whether it’s respecting fire bans or speed limits, and making sure to exercise caution in and on the water.
That includes leaving the alcohol for the wind-down from the day’s activities.
Common sense, self preservation — or whatever you want to call it — it seems like such a simple and obvious message.
Yet with the arrival of every long weekend this summer we will brace ourselves for the inevitable reports of car crashes and drownings, while keeping an ever-watchful eye on our tinder-dry forests as well as the soon-to-be parched grass at the side of the highway.
They’re the same warnings we hear every summer. Sadly, every summer it seems we need to hear them one more time.