Janet and I will be married for 30 years this coming August.

Life has not been without its ups and downs. No marriage is without, let alone one that has lasted this many years.

Good times are followed by bad, arguments, fights, misunderstandings, compromise resulting in better times. All along you wonder why you are still together. You take each other for granted, get caught up in life’s foibles. Wake up and find each other all over again.

Theories abound that women choose their mates. Men may do the proposal on bended knee. That is just submitting to the inevitable. Women appear to see something in their mate that he is ignorant to. It appears in fact that men are ignorant to a whole bunch of stuff and stay that way for what seems like forever.

Men see the house of their dreams only to be set straight by their wives. Lovely house, kitchen too small. Oh right. How about this house, beauty eh? Living room is the wrong size. Oh yeah. How about this? Do you think this is right?  The seeds of doubt have been established. Or have they. Is this not just reality setting in? I am not being a cynic. Women make most of the important decisions.

The husband sees the house. Small kitchen? Nah. Just an opportunity to renovate. Rip out the old one and put in new cupboards. What fun. The ripping out is fun, only to realise that the rebuilding skills may be lacking, just slightly. IKEA may have to come to the rescue. She waits patiently for the project to finish. The power of the woman is that she has already seen the future and stalled the project before it had a chance to forge ahead and lead to further problems.

Contractors hate to finish projects started by others, even when the other is the husband.

We are going to celebrate our anniversary in New York this year. Devin is moving to New York to pursue a Masters degree at the New School. Subject is Change Management. Don’s ask. Still trying to figure it out. Seems like the new buzz word. Everything is changing. We someone with skills to manage these changes. He will have fun in New York. We have lots of friends and family there, all of whom have volunteered space and help and assistance of all kinds. He will not be sleeping in the streets any time soon. Devin had to borrow money from the bank to pay for all this. Loans co-signed by Janet. I would have gladly co-signed. The bank was being fussy about longevity of life and revenue sources.

I am tickled pink for him. To say nothing of how tickled pink he is for himself. Another expression with dubious sources. Why are we tickled pink? Why is that a good thing? He will be moving on August 21. We are all flying down with him, probably spending the week there which will include our anniversary on August 24.

I am not sure if I have written about our wedding. It was a wonderful affair set in the scenic resort of Esterelle in Quebec. We were young and broke and decided to plan the whole thing by ourselves. Fetneh assisted whenever she was allowed. The L’Esterelle resort is about an hour from Montreal.

It was a very rainy summer. Rained virtually every weekend. The weekend of our weekend was sunny, only to rain the weekend after. Lucky us. The banquet hall we had rented was built over the lake. Very scenic and beautiful. Made for great photo ops, which Fo’ad was more than happy to oblige us with. He mentioned later that he would never do that again. Could not enjoy the wedding and take pictures at the same time. Fo’ad is a great photographer. I have no idea where his collection of pictures and slides are these days.

We had booked another banquet hall, but they rented it out to someone else three weeks before our wedding. We were not fast enough with our deposit cheque. We scrambled like mad to find the resort which turned to be much better and nicer.

Invitations were sent out. About 75 people attended. My father came home from Nigeria where he was working. It was a surprise since he had shown no motivation to come. The Baha’i Faith requires us to obtain the permission of our parents before we get married. My father gave his consent, as did my mother-in-law, Maryse. My father-in-law, Morris was more reticent. Could we not live together first to see how things work out? Surely that would be more prudent. We persevered and eventually received his consent.

The Baha’i marriage ceremony was not accepted by the Quebec government in those days. We had a civil marriage at City Hall in the morning. We were quite giddy, had not slept in days. It was a short and uneventful ceremony except for our occasional giggles and fits of laughter. We went out for breakfast with our witnesses and friends, Ginny and Bryan. They are still together as well, and have moved to Toronto.

The civil and Baha’i weddings had to take place within the same day. The Baha’i day starts at 6:00PM. There was not much time to waste even though 6:00PM seemed like an eternity away. We had spent some time the previous day putting out signs along the byroads of leading to L’Esterelle pointing drivers in the right direction. The storm that followed blew away the signs.

We finally made it up to L’Esterelle around 2PM. Some people had already arrived just to make sure they were not going to get lost. Others got lost along the way, including my mother in law who was the DJ. She had a DJ company at the time called the Pink Ladies. She was quite good at it. I dressed very quickly and went out to make sure one of us to greet the guests. Janet was making herself all the prettier. Fetneh was doing the make up and hair primping.

I stood in the banquet hall greeting guests. The room had been set up with a head table. No, no, no. No head table. We are an egalitarian democratic bunch. The table was quickly removed by the very accommodating staff and the room re-arranged a bit. The flowers arrived late and were quickly set on the tables. Marys finally showed up and set up her equipment. I was in a bit of a daze. Janet had not shown up yet.

The Maitre D shows up at my elbow. This would be a good time to server hors d’oeuvres, no? I look at him in a daze and nod. Sure. It is now about 4:00PM. The hors d’oeuvres make their rounds. About half an hour later, the familiar whisper of the Maitre D appears in my ear. Good time to serve drinks, no? Sure, why not. I had no idea what was keeping Janet. 6:00PM was around the corner. I did not dare leave the room as the guests were milling about talking. Everyone seemed happy. No one was asking any questions about, what was to me, the obvious delays in getting thing going.

Janet showed up at 5:30 and the ceremony started. Lucky for us, the Baha’i ceremony is short. We can make it longer by adding our own words. The ceremony was complete before 6:00PM. Oh, joy, oh bliss.

Diana sang a couple of songs for us, others said some things. Don’t remember any more. It was time to eat.

We had a buffet dinner. All set up for the bride and groom to proceed. We arrived at the table to find all kinds of stuff we had nor ordered. Seafood galore, to say nothing of the magnificent ice sculpture that adorned the center of the table. Janet and I looked at each other. We can’t afford this. We never ordered any of this. The whisper comes to my ear, don’t worry, there was a wedding upstairs, these are their left overs, no sense in letting go to waste.

We ate first and used the rest of the dinner time to move around the room, greeting everyone making sure all was good. We danced the night away and finally crashed. I do not know what others do on their wedding night, we slept the sleep of the dead, grateful it was all over.

We stayed at L’Esterelle for a couple of days. Much needed rest and sleep.

The best part of the whole event was how impressed people were with the organization of the whole thing. It all went so smoothly. I have to thank the banquet whisperer for that.

Here we are thirty years later. Still together with a magnificent son who lights up our lives every day. Things are looking up in spite of the obvious.

© 2010 I Have Cancer Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha