Numbers. Great word(s). So many things are rated by numbers; everything is a number. Politics=numbers; sports=numbers; surveys=numbers…etc. Sometimes, we get distressed over THE NUMBER. How can we change that, so we can feel upbeat about a number. What would you think about the “60”? Good enough number for you? I’ll tell you all, right now, that’s a TERRIFIC number for me. Last week, I was visiting my parents, and the rest of my family, helping my folks celebrate their 60th Wedding Anniversary! Can you believe that? Maybe I’ll have to repeat that: 60th Wedding Anniversary! What a great time, from everyone. I think that they really appreciated a small party, with mostly family. Everyone kind of let loose, (what’s new?), it was just fun! There was a nice display of pictures from their wedding, in 1953. Here’s what I’m going to do, because writing every little event that happened at the party would take forever to list, and unless you were there, you might get a little bored! I’m going to try to come up with 60 events from the party, to give you some stuff to laugh at, or just shake your head and say “what was that all about?”!
1) Nat King Cole: their favorite musician of that time, with music at their reception, playing at this party.
2) Blue Suede Shoes: Dad comes home from Korea, (army), the day before the wedding; he had no shoes, just his army boots. Mama said “you’re not wearing those tomorrow!” SOOOO, since Elvis sang about blue suede shoes, that’s what Dad bought for the wedding. At the display at this party, a pair of baby’s blue suede shoes was sitting there.
3) Mom had t0 dance right right off the bat, dad held in there with her, Nat singing “Too Young”.
4) Anyone who knows my Mom, also know she likes to wave a white hanky over her head, and she did, several times.
5) Since she likes to do that, (item 4), she was given a white hanky with her name, Venie, printed on it.
6) I had never seen any of their wedding pictures before, or album; great to see what was out.
7) Chocolate Martini’s were served; tasty!
8) Cake that was served was a duplicate of their wedding cake.
9) Dad’s picture with his best man, cousin Dick Muzzeralli.
10) Wedding certificate was framed.
11) August 8th wedding, in the mid-west (Peoria, Ill), Dad wearing a flannel suit. Could be a little warm?
12) Dad wants everyone’s attention; wants to explain their wedding day.
13) Wedding was at 9:30am.
14) Mom’s dad initially didn’t want to walk her down the aisle; my Dad was Catholic, my Mom was Christian Orthodox. They were against the wedding. He did walk her, at the end. (Mom was 19, Dad was 20).
15) At the reception, Dad proceeded to have a few drinks. (15:1,) Wedding was at 9:30 am, it is now late pm.)
16) Mom had to drive him to Dad’s house, where the guys were playing poker.
17) They talked Dad into playing “a few hands”.
18) They had drinks.
19) Dad looked at Mom, who was sitting there, with purse, and nice dress, waiting to go. She looked so sad, as she sat there alone. They took off.
20) Peoria is a small town, back then, and the highway was just a 2-lane, surrounded by cornfields.
21) Mom had to ask Dad if he knew where he was going, (as corn stalks were flying around).
22) Dad liked the cornfield.
23) He drove back up to road, and kept driving.
24) Mom didn’t sleep, it was past midnight.
25) They ended up up at Lasalle-Peru, does anybody recognize that town?
26) They stayed in the corner room of a hotel, next to the “HOTEL” sign, that lit up the room as it went off-and-on.
27) Only one bathroom for the whole floor.
28) Dad waited, and waited, and waited, and waited; waiting for Mom to come out of the bathroom.
29) They both had observed their religious beliefs prior to that day.
30) The next day, they drove to Wisconsin, their Honeymoon stay, (3 days).
31) Dad rented a boat, for romance on the lake: it was a rowboat; he had to paddle.
32) Two elderly women rented them their cabin, and kept bringing them apple pies, while they (Mom and Dad) were “talking”, so they could get presentable.
33) Mom and Dad had to show these ladies their wedding certificate, to prove that they WERE married.
34) Dad had to go back to Korea when they returned.
35) When Dad got to Portland, before heading out to Korea, he was told he now wouldn’t leave for 2 weeks.
36) Mom left for Portland, perhaps forgetting to let her employers know she was leaving town.
37) They had less than $300.00, all wedding donations.
38) Their first night together, they stayed at the Hilton; that’s what I would say, “shittin’ in high cotton”, back in those days!
39) They shopped that town, livin’ in high heaven, gradually coming down to earth day by day.
40) Their last meal, on their last day together, on their Honeymoon, was splitting a doughnut, and a cup of coffee.
41) They had no money.
42) Oh, how did they pay?
43) They “borrowed” the tip that was sitting next to them.
44) Mom kept 1 dime in her pocket; so when she got home to Peoria, she could call her dad to pick her up from the bus station.
45) How did she eat, on that 3 day bus ride, with no money?
46) Crackers, at the restaurant’s that the bus would stop at.
47) Mom thought her dad would be mad.
48) He wasn’t.
49) Dad had mailed all his money from the army, to Mom, to hold onto it for the wedding.
50) Dad said that he lived off of his poker winnings; and I, after playing with him all these years, I say to myself, “HHHMMMM”.
51) Somehow, it was “invested” improperly.
52) Dad was a little heavier when he got out of the army, after two years.
53) Dad always lets Mom narrate a story, through the years.
54) As he was telling this story, and Mom tries to invest a detail, Dad said something like, “this is MY story, let me tell it!”. Actually, those weren’t the words, use your own discretion.
55) We had a lot of toasts, during this story. Lots of things I hadn’t heard before.
56) Everything was video, and pictures.
57) Lots of back-rubbing, and hugs.
58) I talked to my cousins more that afternoon, than in the past 10 years, and loved it!
59) Mom and Dad are in Peoria, right now, visiting family.
60) HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, MOM AND DAD, I LOVE YOU BOTH SO MUCH, CAN’T WAIT UNTIL YOUR 75th!