1. Monday Night: My father is alive and is making some kind of political speech. His opponent has somehow managed to abscond with Dad's text (no teleprompter), so Dad is forced to wing it. He gives a talk about hard work--about how he grew up on a farm in Oregon, where he learned what hard work is. He talks about some chores he had on the farm--with animals, with crops, with his younger siblings (there were many). I am standing in the crowd of workers (they all seem to have come from a factory or something), and they are cheering for him. I am cheering for him. So proud of my dad. And then I wake and miss him, horribly, all over again. He's been gone now for more than fifteen years.
2. We had a quiet 45th wedding anniversary. Through most of the day we did what we usually do--read and write and exercise a bit. Then, after lunch, we exchanged cards (we buy no more things anymore), each containing a poem from the other. Many tears. Early in the evening, we drove to the Thai Gourmet in Stow for our din-din. We've patronized a number of places for our anniversary dinner: for years we went to the inn at Punderson State Park, then to the Reserve Inn in Hudson, then the Inn at Turner's Mill in Hudson, Downtown 140 in Hudson ... but this year we changed venues and enjoyed it a lot. After dinner, we drove on into Kent to the Kent Plaza Cinemas.
3. Earlier this week--via Netflix streaming--we watched the PBS documentary Hawking, a film we both enjoyed very much. Many things I'd not known about him, though I'd read his A Brief History of Time years ago and have read a lot about him. Anyway, we were looking forward to seeing The Theory of Everything, the film about Hawking with the wonderful Eddie Redmayne in the title role. There were many things we loved about Theory, but both of us wished for more science, less ... love. I mean--to me, the most interesting thing about Hawking is his mind--his ideas--so I wanted more emphasis on those aspects of his story. Not that I object to a little romance, mind you. It's just the balance between the two that disappointed me. Still liked the film a lot, though.
4. A couple/few other wedding memories from 1969 ...
- We realized, somewhere between Akron and New Orleans, that we didn't have a camera. So we stopped at a pharmacy in some little town and bought a Kodak Instamatic. Somewhere are slides of that trip--New Orleans; the Mississippi River; Hannibal, MO; the newlyweds. I'm going to look in some of our old Carousel slide trays.
- One of the weird things about the wedding: I didn't know Joyce's bridesmaids; she didn't know my ushers. We'd met and married so quickly that we had to sort of catch up later with getting to know people.
- On Christmas night in New Orleans, we went to a movie--the latest Bond film, On Her Majesty's Secret Service. In that film Bond marries, and as they're driving away from the ceremony, a hit team kills his bride. Nice choice for a honeymoon film, eh?
- One night--in our hotel room in New Orleans--hungry, hungry, hungry, we ordered from room service a "seafood gumbo"; a giant bowl arrived, and we ate greedily.
- It was the first Christmas I'd ever spent away from family (same for Joyce, who is an only child), so it was strange--and lonely in ways. My mom had given us, though, a small Christmas tree with ersatz gumdrop ornaments. We set that tree up in our room and exchanged our wee gifts. Our first Christmas. We kept that little tree for years and years, but Time and entropy eventually took care of it.