Saturday, September 02, 2006

Isn't it Romantic?

In honor of our 18th wedding anniversary today, I would like to share the story of how Chris & I met.

I would be remiss if I led you to believe it was love at first sight or even second sight- but it is an object lesson in not making snap judgements. The year was 1979 & I'm was a sophomore in high school. I was a closet geek- Friday nights were spend square dancing with a teen club called "The Young Rebels". This particular evening, I was attending club for the first time in about a month- I had been dumped by my boyfriend & hadn't been feeling too sociable. I had been dancing & performing for about 3 years, and had taken a few younger girls under my wing, making sure they got to dance whenever partners were available. The music had started to form up sets, & I still had one girl without a partner; then I spy this young guy, maybe 13 or 14,  standing on the edge of the floor, with his hands in his pockets. So I marched up to him with the little girl in tow, put her hand in his & pushed them towards the dance floor, saying "Boys don't just stand around here!" He gives me this startled look, but scurries off to dance. I join my partner & we end up in the same set with the "arranged" couple. If you are not familiar with square dancing, during the course of a song, the ladies travel around the square, dancing with each gentleman in turn; so of course I eventually end up dancing with the indentured boy. I start chatting with him, commenting on the song & saying his shirt was nice, but he remains completely silent- he doesn't even make eye contact! By the end of the dance, I've decided this is one unpleasant individual- I mean, if you're going to come to a dance club, you shouldn't pout when you're expected to dance!

Fast forward about 6 weeks. It was another Friday night & I was at an event at my high school with my friend Erica. Her boyfriend offered to give me a ride home, since I lived 10 miles away from the school, but says he needs to pick up a friend of his on the way. So, of course, his friend is the anti-social kid. For some reason that escapes me now, I was wearing an bright orange Mexican "mumu", the kind with florescent multi-colored flowers embroidered around the neck. He gives me this sideways look as he gets in the car- a quick head to foot exam- & then smirks. We sit in the car next to each for 15 minutes without speaking. When we get to my house, I thank my friends for the ride, give Mr. "I'm too cool speak" a haughty look & flounce away, closing my front door firmly! The next Monday at school, I ask Erica why her boyfriend is hanging out with such a snotty little kid. She laughs & tells me "Chris? Quiet? I don't think so! Besides, he's not that young- he's 16 & plays varsity soccer with John." Well, I don't care- he's still a brat!

Onward another 6 or 7 weeks. It's now Memorial Day weekend, &  Golden State Round-Up, the N. California squaredance convention, is going on in San Francisco. I head over on BART, planning on crashing with one of my friends who have rented rooms for the weekend. I decide to stop in McD's to get something to eat before the Grand March starts at the Civic Center. I saw a group of my friends & went to join them, but the only seat available is across the table from... HIM! Okay, now we're stuck- we can't look at each other across the table & not speak. I don't remember who broke the ice, but before I knew it, we were jabbering up a storm. I come to find out he was not stuck up, but intimidated by me- he thought I was 18 or 19, sophisticated & out of his league! He is also partially hearing-impaired (as am I) & seriously didn't hear me when I was talking to him all those weeks ago when we were dancing. We must have sat there for 2 hours, when we realized we were going to miss the Grand March. We hopped up & he grabbed my gear to carry to the hall- nice touch. While we're walking, a very drunk man was staggering along the sidewalk & started grabbing at my skirt & petticoat (yes, I was dressed in full gear, including pettipants!) Chris stepped between me & the drunk, put his arm around me to sheild me, & tells the guy to take off. "Wow," I think,"He's cute, friendly and a gentleman!"

Well, the rest, they say, is history. We spent the entire convention together, dancing, talking &... other things teenagers do! Of course, this was not our happily-ever-after quite yet- we were only 16, after all. Our beginning may have been a little rocky, but we both knew that we had found something real & precious. It wasn't long before I knew that I loved this man & would for the rest of my life, but that's a story for another day.

1 comment:

Texas Mammie said...

Hey there. Glad you converted! It's so much easier I think.
I think the hardest parts are commenting and putting the duplicate entry on Spaces.

Jury duty EVERY year? My word. Do metal objects cling to you or does lightening strike around you alot? What kind of magnet are you?
Have a good day~