Quote of the week: “Let your smile change the world, but don’t let the world change your smile.”

Although Mother Nature decided it was summer before the actual start date, the hot season officially began Thursday, June 21.

It’s time for bonfires, barbecues, swimming and hanging out with friends. You know you’re an adult when a friend invites you to a summer barbecue and it’s at their own home instead of their parents’ home.

Since much of the stress of throwing a barbecue and/or party is put on the host, it is nice to have a good friend by their side.

Before the barbecue starts, a good friend to the host should arrive three hours early to get the prime parking spot and to help set things up. During the pre-party hours, one must take dozens of photos to post on social media.

It is also a good time to sample the snacks as they are fresh from the kitchen. After the party starts, they won’t be fresh anymore. During the barbecue, it is also a friend’s responsibility to keep the music upbeat and going.

You can’t always rely on the Amazon Alexa to play the right song for a get-together. A good friend must also be a guest-host for the other goers. A guest-host offers drinks and shows where the bathroom is located.

Additionally, a good friend must keep an eye on the host’s dog since it keeps escaping in the backyard. When the host asks for reminders, the good friend should set a reminder on their phone, so as to remember themselves.

If the good friend notices a lull period in the barbecue, it is their job to turn up the music to start a dance floor. If that fails, the good friend should suggest a group game to play. Some fun group games include cornhole throw, Frisbee, tag, lightning bug catching and star gazing.

A barbecue should end with a bonfire and s’more making. Around the bonfire, if no one is talking, it is the good friend’s job to start telling some funny stories to get the conversation started.

After the event is over and people are headed home, it is the good friend’s job to help clean up and fall asleep on the couch.

The next morning, the host will cook breakfast and serve coffee to the good friend. The good friend will then remain at the host’s house throughout the day and evening.

The after-party cleanup will continue throughout the second day and it get interrupted by movie watching and more eating.

Finally, around 9 p.m. is when the good friend is expected to leave and head back home until next time.

That was my weekend experience as being a good friend to a host throwing a summer barbecue.