Summer. Alas, what happened? In the shivery depths of winter you pictured things so differently. Running hand in hand with him through Port Meadow, carefree with the wind whipping through your hair (in a kind of sexy, controlled way rather than a head-in-a-food-processor manner, as that is what love does after all; have the calming effect of several litres of Frizz-Ease). Lying on sandy beaches, feeling the heartbeat of his next to yours. Waking up every morning to the face you had dreamed (and knew the name) of.
But that was not to be.
Summer luvin’ didn’t happen for us. It’s tempting to mope, but as any girl knows, when life gives you lemons, you might as well make a Lemon Grass Mojito. And so we must dwell on the advantages of being single. But what are they? All Beyoncé, alleged champion of single women everywhere ever told us was that he should have put a ring on it (both helpful and profound, thanks B).
And then everything everywhere else seems to be about shagging…
…Seriously, every Buzzfeed article out there would have you believe that the main benefit of being unattached is that we are not contracted to giving regular BJs (inner feminist cringes; surely you are never obliged). I, however, can’t help but think (believe? hope? pray?) that there are more advantages to being a singleton this summer that extend beyond the realms of marginally more enjoyable hanky-panky. Hope you’ll agree:
1. More time to spend with your own people
i.e. women; people much closer to your end of the autistic spectrum. People who get it when you slip lines from Mean Girls into everyday conversation and don’t just think you’re being weird. Those who will tear up over The Notebook with you instead of awkwardly patting your head while Niagara Falls bursts forth from your eyeballs. And understand you throwing chips at the TV screen whenever Spencer Matthews makes an appearance. Dick.
3. NO SEX. (If you sleep around then plz go straight to number 4). With only your comfort in mind, you need not bother with pills/hazardous hair-removal techniques. And who needs that red satin bra when you can get a multipack of “um, these are, fuck me, absolutely enormous panties” for the same price? Admittedly convincing some that “no sex” is an advantage of being single is a pretty hard sell, so moving swiftly onto number 4:
4. Lots of hot, steamy, no-strings-attached sex. There, I’ve said it.
5. It’s going down, I’m yellin’… ..And it’s okay because you’re only on Tinder to be ironic (right?). Mere seconds after posting a picture of you in essentially underwear (note: not slutty as long as there’s a strip of sand/sea behind) you can be assured of all the mandem in OX1-3 swiping right. Tindz protocol is that men use chat up lines on women that would probs incur a restraining order if said out loud, but it does provide hilarious flirting etc., and perhaps a bit of female empowerment (“to the left, to the left”).
6. Romeo may have a sell-by-date. For example, the other day I saw a fairly attractive 40 year old-ish woman walking alongside a relatively chubby bloke – presumably her hubby – wearing a T-shirt proclaiming “Sex, Drugs and Sausage Rolls”. He definitely looked more sausage roll than rock and roll. But in the golden days of their young love did she expect that sweet Romeo would grow up ready to sport such disastrous apparel? I suspect not. So next time your bf (don’t need to clarify this doesn’t mean boyfriend for you, babe) starts blathering on about her Mr. Perfect, picture sausage roll man, because who knows who he’ll turn out to be.
7. You can really, like, grow spiritually. Think zen…
…No, no, seriously. This one’s really important. Time alone is time to find out who you really are and to get used to tackling your insecurities head-on instead of relying on someone else to make you feel better. You might be better-placed to find the kind of guy/girl that makes you tick further down the line, and fits into the life you’ve created for yourself.
8. You can’t annoy people when you’re single. If, despite the reasons above, you still think being single sucks, this is the bit for you. Whilst you may well become a deranged feline fanatic, at least you’ll never be like your “Smug Married” friends (okay whilst not “married” in the way Bridget Jones – or, indeed, real people – use the term, they’re as good as, given they’ve been boning since Matriculation).
Or like that creepy Finalist couple you totally assumed were Siamese twins until this year.
9. You can learn how to change your bike tyre yourself. Nothing says strong independent woman like changing a bike tyre. As our good friend Mandy Hale says in ‘The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass’: ‘“Single” means you are brave enough to face the glorious unknown of the unaccompanied journey.’ I quite like that. And how could you not trust a gal who uses the word “sass” in the title of her book?
P.S. To all those lucky girls who are in a relationship, reading this and anxiously protesting that numbers 1-9 still apply to you:
You’re probably right. Please mind that this is tongue-in-cheek and sshhh.
 Similarly on the programme “Hoarders” the other day they featured a lady who collected everything she saw that was ladybird-themed. Imagine that. The person you think you love could turn out to be a ladybird-obsessionist later in life and you might have to deal with him slytherin’ your hufflepuff as you lie on a spotted red bedspread with millions of googly-eyed ladybird ornaments staring down on you. Grim.
 Not entirely true
 There a lot of other things which are fairly good at saying strong independent woman. Tyre-changing is really a metaphor for not being dependent on someone else. So it is still acceptable to scuttle to the end of St. Michaels Street every time you get a puncture.