Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Where It All Began

Happy 31st Anniversary Gusto!

Yes, this is us, 31 years ago today with my mother and Gus's parents. Being the nature girl that I was, we were married outside under the trees at an old Mansion in New England that has since burned down. I made my wedding gown and veil, picked wildflowers for my bouquet, and wore ballerina slippers for shoes since I always wanted to be a ballerina but didn't have the training or the body for it. Otherwise, I would have gone barefoot!

Our wedding was the first wedding Gus had ever been too. It was raining that day in New England except for a sunny ribbon right across the upper half of Connecticut, where our wedding took place. When the reception was over we picked up all the loose envelopes from our gifts, got into Gus' VW bug, and drove north. I opened the envelopes while Gus drove to see how far we could go for our honeymoon. We had over $500, which was a ton of money in 1977, so we headed to Bar Harbor, Maine after stopping in Massachusetts and Freeport, Maine along the way. There, we spent two nights in Hinckly's Dreamwood Motor Court, which amazingly is still there today. Perhaps someday we will go back and retrace our honeymoon trip which lasted 5 days before we returned to our new life.

On the day we returned from our honeymoon we stopped by that old mansion to see some friends. One of my "friends" was a big old maple tree that grew at the edge of the property. I named the tree Methuselah, since he was so old. His huge tree arms use to reach down towards the ground where I would swing up onto his branches and clamber into the center of the tree, which was like a little room. In the summer his leafy branches provided shade that cooled me, in the autumn he was ablaze with color. Methuselah was my solace and refuge whenever I was sad, angry, lonely, or even happy. I would sit up in the center of his arms and scan the Connecticut country side, or watch chipmunks scampering about on the stonewall beneath. The day of my wedding I thought of going to say good-bye to Methuselah and climb him one last time, for I knew I was changing from a child to an adult. However, I didn't go see my old pal. Now, as I stood on the Mansion property I looked in horror at Methuselah and I new I would never be able to climb him again. While we were gone on our honeymoon a strong storm blew through, knocking old Methuselah to the ground. He lay in pieces across the wide expanse of the lawn and already work had begun to saw him up into firewood. The winds of nature may have knocked him down, but I always thought Methuselah died of a broken heart.


Kathryn said...

Happy Anniversary!!! I always knew you were a flower child at heart. Steve and I send our love to you both.

Kathie Brown said...

Kathryn, thanks! I'm laughing now because you know me too well!

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary Kathie,

'Flower Child', probably 'Flower Power' as well?.

Anonymous said...

Flower child. I remember people like that. I also remember places like the motor court. Those are probably now "the good old days."

jalynn01 said...

Happy anniversary! I grew up climbing trees so I could so identify with old Methuselah! and was sad when I got the to the end of the story and he had perished!!I felt like crying... You did a great job with your story.thanks for sharing.

bobbie said...

What a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing it with us. Happy Anniversary to you both.
I too grew up climbing trees, and am very sad to learn of the end of Methuselah.

Chrissy said...

Wow, this is such a touching narrative, got me all teary eyed over here. Best wishes on your anniversary and may you both continue to have a long, happy life with each other, filled with only good things.

Pappy said...

Nice story Kathie. A June bride to boot. Happy Anniversary! Loved the site for the old fashioned Tourist Court. That brought back some childhood memories. Congratulations once again. Pappy

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary! Mine is coming up too, can't remember how long it's been, hmmm add one year to my son's age...29?

Anonymous said...

Congrats. May you have many more! Drop by today. I am trying something new.

Kathryn and Ari said...

Happy Anniversary! I loved reading the story of your wedding--it sounds like it was a lot like ours (and ours was in 2004)!

Doug Taron said...

Happy anniversary to both of you.

Kathie Brown said...

Thanks everyone for your congratulations. We are going birding this weekend in the Chirichua Mountains to celebrate. Hopefully we will come home with great photos, new stories and more lifers!

Thanks Roy! I acutally always wanted to be a Native American.

Abe, I was astonished to find it was still in operation!

Jalynn, glad to meet a fellow tree climber. I'm glad my story moved you. Thanks for telling me that.

bobbie, perhaps in the next life you, jalynn and I can all go tree climbing together! I have a feeling it may be too risky for us nowadays! (Though I would probably try given the oppotunity!)

Chrisss, sorry I can't put out tissues with the story! Hope you had some handy and glad you like dit!

Thanks Tex!

Bookbabie, you are right behind me! My oldest just turned 30! Congrats to you too!

forthe people, thanks! I will stop by to see what you've got!

Kathryn and Ari, I suspect we may be kindred spirits!

Doug, thank you!