Welcome to our series, #WHYoming, brought to you in partnership by Kaumo Law.
We are highlighting people from around our communities and asking them a few questions. We want to learn a little about them and see why they chose this great state to raise their families, start their businesses, or simply to ask — Why Wyoming?
For this week’s #WHYoming, I had a chance to sit down with Cristy DiSano, waitress at Santa Fe Southwest Grill. Cristy has been a waitress in Rock Springs for over 20 years and she greets every customer with a smile.
Cristy has a very positive outlook on life and her happiness radiates from her, making every patron feel welcome and cared for.
“If I can brighten anyone’s day with being happy and giving them good service, that just makes me feel really good,” Cristy said.
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Cristy, how long have you been a waitress?
I have been waitressing for about 24 years. A long time. I grew up out in the Bridger Valley, and my first waitressing job was out at where the TA is now, it used to be called Burns Brothers. I started out as a hostess out there. I helped the ladies out there and we had so much fun and eventually they told me I should try serving because I would make more money. So, I tried it and I’ve been doing it ever since. I started that when I was 16 years old.
Then I came over here to Rock Springs after I graduated high school and I worked at Cruel Jack’s for about four years. Then I took a little bit of a break to stay home with my son, but I’ve been waiting tables on and off for 24 years.
How long have you been serving at Santa Fe Southwest Grill?
I have been at Santa Fe for one month now. It’s so weird being the new girl because I worked at the Outlaw for 14 years. Making the choice to come over here was a big decision, but I’m really happy with my choice. The owners here do so much for our community, I feel like I’m really working for people who care about the community and their employees. It’s been a really good experience.
What do you enjoy about being a waitress?
I love the interaction with my customers. I’ve been in Rock Springs for 22 years now and I still have some of the same customers I’ve had from the start. I feel like I get to know these people and they start to become like family. I care about them. I’ve watched their kids come in and grow up and become young adults, and I just love the interaction with the people.
I know there’s a lot of people who don’t like to deal with the public, but I’ve been so blessed with my customers over the years. I have to say that they are the reason why I still like waiting tables. And I still care about every table. After all these years, I still have a good attitude about coming to work every day and it’s all because of my customers.
Throughout working at the Outlaw, I built some amazing friendships with the people I worked with and with my customers and that was the saddest part about leaving. I really enjoyed working there for all those years, and I didn’t want to miss out out on seeing those same customers. So I’ve been blessed that a lot of them have come over here to see me at Santa Fe too.
How did you end up in Rock Springs?
I had moved over here to go to college and then me and my husband got together and we’ve been together ever since. Rock Springs is his hometown and we decided to buy a house and start a family right away, so this is just home now.
Now I’ve been here longer than I was out in the Valley. I didn’t think I would end up in Rock Springs but I love it here. I really love our community.
What do you appreciate most about our community?
Our community is so giving. I have seen so many people go out of their way to do nice things for people who are in need. I just think that if there’s any family in true need, and it’s put out into our community, it will be taken care of. We just have a truly giving community.
I also think we’re just really blessed here because there’s so many job opportunities with all the different industries. We’re really blessed with a great work force here.
But it’s the people who really make it. My husband almost hates going out in public anymore because we can’t just go in and out of somewhere because I’ve worked in the public so long. It’s never a quick trip anywhere, but I love it. He’s just had to learn to share me.
What is something unique about you?
I would have to say my voice is what makes me unique. I have a lot of people say, “we didn’t see you but could hear your voice and knew it was you”.
Also, maybe my outlook on life. A lot of my customers tell me I’m one of the happiest people they know. I have a very positive outlook on life. It’s really rare if you don’t see me happy. We all have our bad days, but mine are very few and far between.
What are some of your hobbies?
I played on the women’s volleyball team for Bombers for 10 years and I had an amazing time with that. But I just got so busy and we’ve been out of town so much that I haven’t gotten to play the last year, but I really do miss that.
Camping is probably one of the biggest things I do. My family camps six months out of the year. As soon as the weather is nice, we go. I love to spend my time in the mountains.
I have also always loved watching my nieces and nephews and my son play sports. I just love any kind of sport.
If you could give one brief piece of advice, what would it be?
I would just say live for today and always try to find the positive in any situation. Also, just treat others the way you want to be treated. You never know when someone could be having a bad day, you don’t know their situation, so I just really feel like you should be kind and treat others the way you want to be treated.
Where is your favorite place to hang out in Sweetwater County?
If we’re in town we’re pretty big homebodies, but we like to go out to eat with our friends. Lately, we’ve been going down to Square State. We love the owners there and it’s such a fun atmosphere. So we like to go down there and try out their new beers.
Really, anywhere that I’m hanging out with my friends and family is my favorite. As long as I’m with my people we are good.
Would you rather walk, ride a bike, take a horse, or drive a car?
If I was more knowledgeable, I would love to ride a horse. But I guess it would depend on where I was going or if I was in a hurry. The last few years I’ve started doing some walking in the summertime, so I think I’d have to say walking. But not running, I don’t run.
I love to walk because I feel like when you walk you see so many different things in your neighborhood. You see things you never noticed before that have been there forever.
What would you sing at karaoke night?
If I did karaoke it would be us girls. We would sing it together because I’m a terrible singer. But we love some Salt-N-Pepa. So when us girls get together it would probably be Shoop by Salt-N-Pepa. Nobody would enjoy it but us girls would laugh.
How would your friends describe you?
I think they would say I’m bubbly, happy, and fun. We all have a really good time, so I think most of them would say I’m really happy and fun to be around.
What is one of your proudest accomplishments?
Raising my son. I am so proud of the young man my son has become. Being a mom, I have to say, is one of the best experiences of my life. There’s nothing greater than the love of a mother and a child.
It’s been such a joy watching him grow up at every stage of his life. He’s a young man now and he has a great job with Jonah Energy and he just paid off his first car, so just watching him grow into the young man he is today is my proudest accomplishment.
Also, my husband and I have been married for 21 years and I feel like in today’s age, people are so quick to give up on their marriages. But we have really worked hard at our marriage and I’m really grateful for the marriage we’ve had for 21 years. My son, my marriage, my family, those are my proudest accomplishments.
Who would you want to play you in a movie about your life?
Oh gosh, I’m so crazy so the movie would be definitely be a comedy. I think Leslie Mann. I just love her characters. A lot of people say I look like Reese Witherspoon but I feel like Leslie Mann is very funny and goofy, I’d like her to play me.
Would you like to continue to live in Wyoming?
In Wyoming, we’re blessed with open spaces and we have so much access to the mountains. The job that my husband has been provided with has given us a good life here. I like that we can bear arms, we’re a god loving country. I just feel like us Wyomingites are special. Wyoming is just home. I love to travel and see other places but there’s nothing like Wyoming, that’s for sure.