Same Time, Next Year

I got back last night after a three day getaway at Dummy Lake just outside of Cumberland, WI. I’ve made this trek to Cumberland for 11 of the last 12 years. It all started when Ruth, who I worked with at the Elementary School many years ago, decided to host Chick Week. She invited, as she puts it, the women she liked to come to her cabin. Usually the second week of July is designated as Chick Week every year. We are encouraged to arrive and depart as our schedule will allow. Over the years we’ve added a few women and sadly, in 2000 we lost one to breast cancer. We range in age from the early 50’s to the late 70’s. Actually, we are a pretty unlikely group when you think about it.

We have different political views, different religious views, different lifestyles, and different body shapes. We do, however, have one thing in common. We all love to laugh. Oh, and eat – we LOVE to eat. (I guess that’s two things.)

The thing I like the most about these women, though, is that no one really cares if my clothes match, or if I have make-up on, or what I look like in a swimsuit. It is truly a stress-free time away.

We do all kinds of crazy things when we are together. Somehow we started the tradition of doing a craft every year. This is usually a source of great entertainment because, quite frankly, some of us are not all that crafty. I tend to fall into the “less crafty” group which probably has more to do with my perfectionist tendencies than my actual crafting abilities. This year we made scarves which were super easy, and fun. One of the girls (and I use the term “girls” VERY loosely) commented on my lack of whining which basically means that I’m better at making scarves than I am at say, making Christmas ornaments out of modeling clay. (Oh, that was a painful year.)

Of course, no girl’s getaway would be complete without a little shopping (though it isn’t our main source of entertainment.) Bargain Bills in Rice Lake is ALWAYS on the agenda. Bargain Bills is a store FILLED to the brim with stuff you don’t really need. It’s great. Some of it is dirt cheap and some not quite such a bargain. It’s not a store for the faint of heart because it goes on forever. Food, kitchen supplies, gift wrap, furniture, automotive supplies, gardening gear, home improvement items, toys, stationary, Christmas ornaments, craft supplies, yarn, and candles are just a few of the items you’ll find at Bargain Bills. Some aisles I’ve never dared to enter.

There is always some great competition around the card table in the evenings. I can honestly say it’s the only time of the year I enjoy a game of golf (the card game, not the chasing of little white balls.) Prizes are furnished by all of us and let’s just say that winning a prize isn’t always a real win.

Every year, I come home from the cabin refreshed and relaxed (though not necessarily rested.) And, we always part ways with the promise of “same time, next year.” I can’t wait!