This ‘life experience’ will last forever

I am not inclined to publish blog posts such as what I am about to post today, but given that I note that High Plains Blogger includes “life experience” among its topics, I thought I would share this experience with you.

It goes like this.

I had just returned from the Army the previous summer of 1970. I enrolled in college, wanting to restart the civilian life that was interrupted by induction into the military two years earlier, and which included a tour in Vietnam.

One day I was sitting in the student union, taking a break from my studies. Then I saw this girl. I decided in that moment that I wanted to meet this young woman. As luck would have it, that opportunity presented itself in short order.

We found ourselves sitting at a table with a mutual acquaintance. He amused us both. We made eye contact, winking and chuckling at the stories this fellow was telling.

I introduced myself. She did as well. We liked each other right away.

We dated for a time. Our relationship matured and developed rapidly. It evolved quickly into a loving relationship. Then we decided to get married. The marriage occurred on Sept. 4, 1971 in a small Presbyterian Church in southeast Portland, Ore.

The preacher who married us told us the ceremony would take 22 minutes. It was — dare I say it — the quickest 22 minutes of my life. 

Just like that, we were husband and wife. Our sons would come along soon.

It has been the greatest ride imaginable. Neither of us could have imagined the places we would see, the things we would do, the path our combined life would take.

It all happened 48 years ago.

What is the life experience I learned? I tell young men a simple fact, which is that you shouldn’t go looking for the girl of your dreams. She will appear when you least expect it.

I am living, breathing proof of that fundamental truth.

Happy anniversary, Kathy Anne.

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