Musings of Navigating The Finite remainder of life from Porchville, with the hope of a glimpse of The Infinite

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My Sweetest

About two months ago I was walking through a grocery store when all of a sudden I got this huge mental flash of undefined recognition that went off in my head like a flash bulb on a camera.  I was moving right along when it happened and it took me about 20 feet until I got stopped and thought to myself, what just happened?  I actually had to think about it for a moment.  It was like one of those subliminal commercials.  I saw something and it was troubling me, but what was it?  It then occurred to me.  I just saw an image of my wife and I.  

What!  How the hell could I have just seen an image of my wife and I in a food store?  I must be loosing my mind.  I shook my head and almost left but there was something really bothering me about this.  I was sure that I just saw a picture of us.  How under the sun could that possibly be?    

So I back tracked to the last thing I bought and repeated my steps.  Nothing.  I did not see any kind of image.  This was crazy, I should have left.   Still this was really troubling me.  How could I have seen a picture of us?  So I backtracked again, slower this time, and paying close attention to everything that I was passing.

Greeting cards. Ahaa!  I stopped and began to scan the shelves.  


© Hallmark Cards Inc.

There it was, a photograph of my wife and I when we were young before we were married.  Damn how can that be?  I can even tell you when and where the photograph was taken.  Pittsburgh, June of 1975, Three Rivers Arts Festival.  It had to be then because we were walking down a cobblestone street.  I can't think of anyplace else that we would have been on such a street.  

We had been going together for four months.  We were head over heels in love with each other.  Wow!  There she is in one of her pink tops, lovely dark brown hair with red highlights, and that cute ass framed so lovingly in her jeans.  Oh my!  How I dreamed of her behind in those days! (OK, I will admit it, I still do!)   

And there I am slobbing along as usual, dark tee shirt not tucked in, hunched over so that we could awkwardly hold hands.  It's us!  It has be!  Looking at it, I could not find a single aspect that would prove other wise.  It has to be us.  Oh c'mon how could it be?   

 So I bought the card and gave it to my wife.  She looked at it for a few seconds and said, 

"Wow that really looked like us when we were going together except the girl's hair is not long enough.  My hair went to my waist back then."

Damn, it is not us!  OK I knew it could not really be us, but still....  

Here is the message in the card.

Take my hand 
and walk with me
From where we are
to where we'll be.
Love is a mystery. 

We'll learn more of life
as we go---
No map, no answers.
All I know
is this:  I love you so.

All my love 
on Sweetest Day
and Every Day

There is something about this card that really tugs my heart strings.  

It's bittersweet nostalgia I guess.  Lost youth?  

There we are...young, carefree, innocent.  Almost child like.

"No map, no answers."  Not a nickel to our names, no decent job,  a very grim economy. 

How the hell could we be so happy?  

Yet we were.  

How could we have such courage for the map, no answers? 

Yet we did. 

How could I feel for the first time in my life like a completed human being? 

Yet I did.  She completed me.  She made me whole.  

Where in the hell did all that time go? 

I don't know, but it did.    

 "From where we are
    to where we'll be."

"Where we'll be"... for now is today, right here, still together, still in love.  No longer innocent. Perhaps two thirds of a map drawn but not completed.  Some of the answers are in hand but not all of them.

Image Credit: Wikipedia
One answer I am certain of, if it were not for you, my loving wife, taking my hand and walking with me...I would not, alive, and still head over heels in love.  

So my Sweetest...take my hand and walk with me... 

We have yet another third of a map to draw, my love, you and I, through the terra incognita of the "golden years".  We have many answers yet to find.  Adventure still awaits us.  They say getting old is not for sissies.  Do we still have the courage?  I can do it as long as I have your hand in mine. 

So indeed my love...

Take my hand 

   and walk with me

From where we are 
                      to eternity.


Card Photo and Message:  Card # SD 278-9  © Hallmark Cards Inc. Kansas City MO, 64141

Map: Wikipedia, Terra Incognita  

Note on Sweetest Day from the back of the card: 

Sweetest Day was established in the 1920s by a Cleveland candy company employee who wanted to bring happiness to shut-ins, orphans, and other individuals, who were often forgotten.  Sweetest Day is celebrated on the third Saturday in October and has become a day for remembering loved ones and friends who enrich our lives with their thoughtfulness.

© Hallmark Cards Inc 


  1. Aw, you are such a romantic. This is so sweet. Those of us who have been in love for a long time are so rich.

    1. Olga,

      Rich indeed. Thank you for the kind compliment. Yes, I kind of like to remind the world that we boring old timers at one time had a little pizzaz and that it is possible to stay together for your whole life. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

  2. You were carried back-when I sometimes am, I "remember"or re-access things long forgotten....isn't that so amazing?
    What a beautiful thing you shared.
    Those days were wonderful.

    1. They were wonderful days, Sarah, and I hope to have many more.

      I saw a tee shirt the other day,

      "The older I get, the better I was."

      I hope that is not totally true. I have a lot living I want to do with that woman.

      Thank you for your kind comment.

  3. Funny thing about old pictures and the memories they evoke. And your timely blog on the matter. Just a couple of weeks ago I had another 700 or so old photographs that I took in to the photo lab to be digitized and put on CD. The Mrs. and I were going thru them and the oh's and awe's and "remember that" or "this" from way back.
    I think it is good to go back in time every so often and look at old photos of times gone by and reminisce.
    Ya it was good back then, but no less so now I think, for most of us that lead fairly straight forward linear lives.
    Ideally, everyday in the here and now, should be the best day of your life.
    I do though, sincerely hope that you and yours have another few decades to spend together in love.
    Busman of the north.

    1. Busman,

      Yeah old photos do have a way of bringing back the old memories, this one sure does and it ain't old or even us! I never buy cards with actual photos of people. That always seemed weird to me--like--I wish our anniversary was in the south of France and we looked half as good as the people in the card! But this is us--its no accident that the guy has no head and you see only half of hers. Hell they are probably computer generated images made from body parts of stock photos of real people. A Hallmark engineer in China probably dialed in Sweetest Day, slightly romantic, slobs, urban, and cheap price range and hit print. Voila 300,000 couples think they are the stars of the card! "Look honey, don't it look just like us 75 years ago!" Having that guy stooped over like that with a slobby shirt is spooky though.

      It is us I tell you, my wife is full of shit about her hair length.






      Yeah, Bussman you're right photos can really inspire the mind, especially whack jobs like me that maybe found that straight forward linear life thing a bit unimaginative.

      Nah--just fooling around. Old photos are worth their weight in tears and gold.

  4. Awww, this was the sweetest post from the sweetest guy to his sweetest wife! You are such a romantic! "that cute ass framed so lovingly in her jeans"...that's gotta be the most romantic comment ever! You win my award for Husband of the Year! (It's basically just an honorary title, you don't win a new car or anything, just my undying envy of you and your wife and how you found each other!)

    1. Alicia,

      Is that scathing sarcasm I detect? You know I have to push the envelope a little. I mean c'mon, who else writes about a bird shitting on his head?

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    2. Hahaha! No, it was a heartfelt comment. Not everyone finds the love of their life in this lifetime. I'm so happy you have. And I think it was so sweet that you had to buy the card for her. You're a good guy even if birds feel a little differently about you than I do :)

    3. Alicia,

      Heartfelt, great I am relieved. Does that mean that there really is some material component to the Husband of the Year Award? I realize a car is a bit much. How about travel packets of antiseptic wipes, in case I run into any more birds?

  5. Ohhh, you let down your manly face and wrote the sweetest post ever!!! How wonderful that you and your wife share a great love. Hubby and I have that, too! It's indeed a rare gift. Thanks for sweetening up sweetest day for us all.

    1. Carol,

      Well that manly face is getting to be a facade anymore. I never did do macho very well. It is a wonderful thing to be married to your BFF, and I am glad that you and your husband are sweetest.

      Thanks for stopping on by and commenting.

  6. i mean, if it WERE sweetest day today.. you would have sweetend it. Instead you sweetened Saint Lucia Day and also it's my dad's 97th birthday. He is celebrating in Heaven.

    1. Fear not, everyday is some kind of day for Hallmark! There is always an occasion that needs a special card. Even a desire for bigger boobs:

  7. Geez, I am really out of touch with reality. You wrote this yesterday, which was 12-12-12, NOT my dad's birthday, Saint Lucia Day, or anything else except a Wednesday with great numbers. I'll wake up one of these days. I guess I was gob-smacked by the romance in this post. i hope your wife reads it and gets all melty.

    1. "anything else except a Wednesday with great numbers"

      Ahhh, not true Dec 12 is

      --A friends anniversary.

      --Marconi sent the first trans-Atlantic wireless signal, 1901

      --Father Flannagan opens Boystown, 1917

      --First motel opens in US at San Luis Obisbo CA, 1925

      --US Supreme Court decides in favor of Bush, Bush vs Gore, 2000

      Today incidentally is Friday, December 14, 2012.

      Thanks for the kind comments.

  8. When I saw this, it immediately made me think of the only lines of poetry I've ever memorized. I don't especially like poetry, and I never even read the full poem until today. I didn't even know the few lines of poetry I love, from Robert Browning, were from a poem titled "Rabbi ben Ezra" of all things. The only lines that really touch me are the first:

    Grow old along with me!
    The best is yet to be, ...

    Your beautiful post made me feel all warm and nostalgic. And I think it's true. When you find the love of your life when you are very young (and likely pretty stupid) you are given a gift you don't even know you are getting at the time. How wonderful to walk through life -- navigating it's bumps and cliffs and treacherous pitfalls-- holding the hand of the one you will love forever.

    1. Donna,

      Thank you for your lovely comment. I especially like your thought:

      "When you find the love of your life when you are very young (and likely pretty stupid) you are given a gift you don't even know you are getting at the time."

      Indeed when we are young we don't realize what a gift our loved ones are, and what a wonderful thing to be able to look back and give thanks for being graced by a loving partner.

      BTW, I agree on poetry. For the most part if flies over my head. I don't know, I always want to grab the poet give them a shake and say if you got something to say, just say for crying out loud.

      Donna, thank you again for your lovely comment and bless you and your husband--may you continue a long and happy navigation!

  9. Sextant,
    I wish you and your love the same! Thank you for being my unseen yet funny, wise and thought-provoking friend.

    1. And thank you, Donna, for your great comments and support.

  10. Long live your LTR, and Happy Holidays from Yule through the New Year. May you both flourish is health and happiness and partnership.
    Lynn from WWTF

    1. Lynn,

      Thanks so much for the holiday and well wishes, and very much the same for you and your husband. Any one who started out in a quonset hut will understand our the joy of a lasting relationship...and a solid foundation.

      Always an honor, thanks for stopping by and commenting Lynn.

  11. I love this story! Love even more that you bought the card and gave it to your wife. Memories are the greatest treasures, aren't they? We do not appreciate them while we are making them, it is only later when we can laook back and savor each moment.

    1. Kathy,

      Well it is kind of weird to have memories inspired by a photograph of other people, but, yes, I can still remember being on that date and even what some of the art looked like. It was a wonderful time and, indeed, really great memories.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.