Fifty years is a very long time. Broken down, it’s five decades; 18,250 days together with one person...but who’s counting?. Sharon and I have probably seen it all, done it sometimes and been there more than a couple of times. A man, any man, should be so lucky. Granted, there were a few stumbles over the years, a couple of missteps perhaps but no detours to take us off course. Since only five percent of married couples ever make that milestone (blame D and D) we thought it certainly was something to celebrate.
So how to recognize that achievement? Sharon knew what our kids were up to and she wanted no part of it! True to form, both Melanie and Brian thought it would nice to have a large surprise party for Sharon and me on our 50th Wedding Anniversary. While that was a very kind gesture from the kids, Sharon wanted only a small intimate gathering with the immediate family.
So that’s just what we did by spending a weekend up at the Ruttgers Lake Resort outside of Garrison, Minnesota. It happened back in June when our respective calendars allowed us all the time to gather together.
On the way up to the lake, Sharon stopped at the old curio shop where she had worked two summers while still in High School. Those two summers were truly memorable for Sharon and it was a thrill for her to share some lakeside stories and a mini-tour of the olde shoppes for her grandchildren.
LaComb/McMahon family gatherings are never dull. This special weekend was no different. There was an art contest, a magic show put on by all the kids, lots of card playing and just plain relaxing around our townhouse.
Water activities included a pontoon tour of the lake, tubbing, Jet-Skis, kayaks, paddleboards and acrobatics on the lakeside trampoline.
In a way, our Ruttgers weekend was a good parable for the last 50 years.
It began in the Virgin Islands for our three week honeymoon. A brief stay in Tennessee and five wonderful years in Maryland. Then we settled into our classic Orin Thompson rambler for another forty plus years living in Apple Valley.
Now back at Ruttgers and safely sequestered in old Adirondack chairs, Sharon and I watched the grandkids ping-pong on and off a trampoline offshore, and I couldn’t help but wonder how it went from my first opening line: ‘Got change for a quarter’ to that attractive blond receptionist back in 1969 to sitting next to this grand old dame, enjoying our grandchildren’s aerobatic antics off shore.
It’s been one heck of an interesting fifty years. So how did we make it through fifty years? Dumb luck on my part and plenty of patience on Sharon’s part. I guess the old cliché ‘whatever it takes’ probably holds some credence here.
· I want to give credit to the best daughter-in-law in the world for the wonderful Snapfish book she put together for our anniversary. I have borrowed liberally some of her pictures for this blog.