Sally Ann Shurmur: School's Out For Summer

Columnist Sally Ann Shurmur writes, "Combining car rides and food are my favorite things, and I would love to get to the Bunkhouse, where we have never been, Miners & Stockmen’s, which we love, and Svilar’s, where I have not been since I was a kid."

Sally Ann Shurmur

May 23, 20244 min read

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(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

As I write this, the kids across the street, up the block and across town have just four hours left in their school year.

Same for teachers, administrators, bus drivers and the rest of the exhausted yet now exhilarated staff.

The bus driver I know best plans to spend his afternoon and evening on the golf course, although the wind is howling under sunny, chilly skies.

When I was a single parent with two kids in school, summer wasn’t that great for us.

Sure, I didn’t have the daily screaming matches about getting their butts out of bed, and the truth is sometimes they both slept almost all morning.

But I tried to save money on childcare by having Joe “watch” Molly, and upon further review, that wasn’t a good decision.

He got to have no fun during the week and she didn’t either.

The best part of summer for them was weekends at the lake, where our good friends with kids the same age continued to haul them, even after their dad and I divorced.

It’s a slippery slope between over scheduling kids during the summer and letting them rot on the couch.

When I was a kid, the library was my favorite spot, winter or summer. And as I got older, the chaise lounge in the backyard with my radio, book and can of Tab was my sanctuary.

My own little grands have movie passes and family bowling fun to get them out of the house a bit, where they tend to stay while one of their shift working parents is often trying to get day sleep.

Now that I am still feeling better, the shot doc is shocked by the way, we’re heading to Wisconsin next week to visit Peggy Jane the Mom.

After her winter from hell, I am happy to get the chance to see her.

We drive everywhere we go, which most folks find completely weird. But the driver has a months-old ridiculous car, and it hasn’t had a big road trip yet.

This is just another of a thousand ways men are different from women.

Everywhere we go, parking lots, gas stations, drive-thrus for fast food, guys just drool over this drab grey miniature car.

Not one woman has ever said a word about it other than me because, well, it’s drab and grey. But I will admit that it does scoot and has some sound effect button that magnifies the accelerator sound, so that’s kind of fun.

Our calendar for the all-too-short summer is probably too full, but after not moving all winter, I am ready.

Friday, June 7, is Wyoming Night at David Street Station in Casper with Jay Sawvel, Sundance Wicks, Heather Ezell and Kaylee Prigge all on the roster.

That’s football, men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball head coaches for our far flung readers.

July brings my 50th class reunion in Laramie over Jubilee Days, and late July sends us to Star Valley for an annual golf tournament. Very excited to be somewhere new and for the long car ride.

Anyone who knows me knows that my bucket list is much longer than my companion would like.

Combining car rides and food are absolutely my favorite things, and I would love to get to the Bunkhouse, where we have never been, Miners & Stockmen’s, which we love, and Svilar’s, where I have not been since I was a kid.

Oh, and ice cream in Farson.

And I absolutely positively am going to the new Buc-ee’s just south of Cheyenne, although I may have to go there by myself.

I think I should get a car ride for every round of golf the companion plays this summer, but we’d quickly run out of days.

So while he’s out there on the course, I will be plotting our next destination.

Whatever your plans are for the summer, here’s hoping you get back to your favorite spot and also get to somewhere you’ve never been.

Sally Ann can be reached at:

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Sally Ann Shurmur