Last week, as I drove back from checking out the Canal Days festival in Saltsburg, I was catching up on my podcast listening and taking my sweet old time driving through Westmoreland County. A recent episode of the Happier podcast came on and caught my attention. Happier is the podcast from author Gretchen Rubin who is the author of the book The Happiness Project. I have heard about the book, but I’ve been skeptical of people who talk about being happy. A few months ago I stumbled upon the Happier podcast and I have to say that I have become a fan. I even picked up a copy of The Happiness Project book on a recent visit to the East End Book Exchange.
Episode 67 of the Happier podcast is about designing your summer. The gist of the episode is thinking about how you can you plan something or many things that make your summer different from the rest of the year.
As soon as I heard some of the examples … I LOVED the idea and I immediately thought about how summer in Pittsburgh is pretty unique. Over the past 10 years of blogging about Pittsburgh, I’ve met lots of Pittsburgh natives who now live around the country, but bring their kids back to Pittsburgh for annual summer visits to Kennywood or the wave pool. I was invited to a luncheon (for I’m not even sure what but it might have been some promo for a Steelers credit card) at Heinz Field and I sat with a father and son from Delaware. They had driven to Pittsburgh for the day to attend the lunch. The father told me about how even though his kids didn’t grow up in Pittsburgh, he made sure to bring them back every summer to go to Kennywood, family picnic, and a long list of other Pittsburgh places, because he wanted them to think of Pittsburgh as home.
So the Happier Podcast got me thinking… how should I design my summer and how would you design the perfect Pittsburgh summer? I’ve already started making a list of ways that I can design my summer. Should I bike more, run more, sleep more? One example they gave on the podcast was about a woman who planned alfresco Fridays, a weekly lunch gathering of friends every Friday for the summer. Who wants to join a Pittsburgh summer lunch club? Where should we have a weekly alfresco lunch?
In the episode, Gretchen mentioned that she is planning to have a lunch date every single day. Could I plan a coffee meeting for every day of the summer? I still go back and read some of the interviews that Kate wrote for her blog, Yinzpiration, where she interviewed 100 Pittsburghers she had not yet met. I love the idea of creating a summer activity or project.
So, dear readers of Pittsburgh, help me answer some of these questions…
- What are your must do Pittsburgh summer activities?
- How would you design your perfect Pittsburgh summer?
- Who should I have a cup of coffee with this summer? (and what coffee shops should I visit?)
Leave a comment here on the blog or post a Tweet with the hashtag #pghsummer!