The sun sets on the Cajun Prairie as the sun sets on Summer 2011

Summer is another season of work in the Continuing Education Office at LSU Eunice, but it’s a mellow season, a season of moderate days without much needing to be done on-the-road or after-hours.  And then the days are long enough so that after punching out at the office, we get to tack on another “day at play” of yard working, working out, bike riding, walking the dogs, or whatever else fits our fancy until the sun sets sometime after 8:00.  Long, tiring days, but tiring on our terms–That makes all the difference.

The first day of class of the fall semester pretty much signals the end of the mellow summer season, though, and that end occurs tomorrow with the new semester beginning.  So tonight I feel blue.  The next couple of weeks will feature extra-long days NOT on our own terms, hundreds of miles of administrative travel away from the office, and not nearly as much after-hours time to do what I like to do.  And let’s not forget the climatological shortening of the days as summer oozes into fall.  Yes, the innocent summer “daze” have passed.

So here’s to auld lang syne, Summer 2011: What will I remember about this season past?

  • Celebrating Ann’s graduation in the French Quarter started the party in May.
  • Moving Ann into her single “grownup” apartment in Baton Rouge.
  • Friday afternoon trips to the new Rouse’s Market in Lafayette.
  • Long runs and bike rides along Eunice’s Park Avenue.
  • Payton Elizabeth playing in the whale pool in the back yard.
  • Cooking out on the patio.
  • Driving those shiny new Toyotas: a Tundra for Pop and a Highlander for Mom.
  • Preparing Sunday School lessons from the fascinating Prophet Jeremiah’s magnum opus.
  • Hot, hot, hot, dry, dry, dry: But no hurricanes thanks to hot and dry high pressure!

If I brainstormed a while longer, I’d lengthen the list.  But for now, suffice it to say summer 2011 was a highlight reel of empty-nest middle-agedness.  I wish I could do it again, and I can, but I guess I’ll have to put in another 9 months at the grindstone.  So let the next nine months begin tomorrow.   Mid-May 2012 can’t come soon enough!

Shakespeare knew how I feel when he wrote,  “Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.”