That’s something my husband and I talked about a week after we met. We married 14 months later. Oh, we eloped. What we said that first week is that the marriage is more important than the wedding. Our young friends are proving that to be true.

Marriage is about yesterday, nearly 13 years in, on a klutz week, I have them from time to time, every five years or so. I think I broke my near little toe on the wood leg to our sofa and had to get up to ice it again. He brought me an ice pack and a naproxin sodium for pain. Thank you, dearest!

In 2003 we were moving and had the car, the truck was on its way to its new destination and we were at an old Holiday Inn, new name, the round ones. The room was angular. I was up and pacing middle of the night and because of the non-squareness of the room when I stubbed my toe on the desk my husband, in his sleep, said “hurts, doesn’t it.” To this day it’s a joke here and he doesn’t remember saying it. That’s marriage.

People spend tens of thousands for weddings when they should consider their future. I did our wedding planning, flowers, site, dress (rental with tiara and lovely white scarf, hair, makeup, shirt and tie for my groom, lunch for eight and honeymoon) for $2,000. Yes, tell me to get out of here. That includes permits.

My husband and I asked an older couple (married for decades) for a meeting at their home. It was a Tuesday afternoon. They had been very kind to us, me before I met J, for years. I said that we have decided to marry. If you don’t have any plans at noon Saturday, we’d love for you to be there. I called them Mom and Dad.

I asked “Dad” if he would marry us. As a retired Navy Captain I’m sure he thought it would be on a ship, and “Mom” to sign as a witness. He took a moment in the other room (perhaps shed a tear because he has three sons and no daughter to give in marriage). He came out, asked how it would be done and told me he wanted to write the vows.

They were not great on computers so I said I’d type and print the vows for him in caps and double spaced. We found an illegal venue less than 24 hours before the wedding and were in and out of there in 15 minutes to go to my favorite Northern Italian place on the patio for lunch for eight. The chef gave us wedding cake. Then we went home to call our parents.

Yes, that 2K got us one night at a senior’s resort on Rte. 66 (my husband’s choice and it was karaoke night) and two in Vegas courtesy of a concierge who saw my bouquet and told us to come back after lunch and gave us a gorgeous suite on the 33rd floor for $88 per night!

It was an incredible four days planning and executing but worth every minute. We did what we wanted to do. Simple, elegant, and we met each others’ families first. His mother interrogated me for five days. Smart she is, because whenever I tell her that her son is on a five month project that takes over my kitchen work space and is driving me nuts all she says is “I told you.” Yes, she did. Cheers! Dee

ps “Dad” is now interred at Annapolis. Of course we were there. God rest his soul. As his “daughter” I’ve permission to visit any time. I just have to wait a month for a parking permit. Dee


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