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40 Years of Romance




I have been fortunate to share most of my adult life with my husband of 40 years this June. (Yes, I was indeed a child bride). I knew almost from the first time I saw him that I would marry him. Just had to wait (and I didn't have to wait long-he proposed to me on our second date) until the idea came to him. I wasn't going to stand in line, and there was a long one. He was the handsomest man I'd ever dated. I believe our first kiss set up a chemical reaction that made all my other memories fade. I didn't have the crowd chasing me like he did.

We left for our honeymoon in 1971. This picture was taken in our $200 VW, which took us all the way from Holland, through France, Italy, the then Yugoslavia, back along the Riviera to Spain, and then back up to Holland and home through England. We found out when we sold the car for $200 to another American tourist, that it was two cars welded together. The morning the picture was taken, we were robbed by gypsies, and my husband's passport was stolen. But were we unhappy? No, we were so much in love, being stranded in Spain without any money wasn't a problem. And we found a way.
In between having our babies, we found a life together that was not always easy, but then, nothing that lasts rarely is. I have to say it was a lot of work.
But the rewards, out of this world.
I'm one of the lucky ones, and I know it. I feel grateful every time I look at these photos and see my kids and now grandchildren.
So what did we do on our 40th? No more camping for me. And that's perhaps a story for another day, how we camped out for 18 months with 4 kids in a tent (one was a newborn), due to circumstances beyond our control. No, I don't do camping.

We went to Asilomar. Quiet evening with a room with a sliver of ocean view, fireplace, no phone or internet. Walks along the beach and the plank pathways. Aquarium. Ah. It was a nice way to start spending the next 40 years.

What a great abundant life. And so much to look forward to.
What about your relationships? Do they get better with age? Or has weathering the troubled spots turned you into a diamond?
Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 2 comments
anthony stemke - June 28, 2011

What a wonderfully poignant story, it was really touching. Wish I had a solid 40 years, had about 15. Started again 6 years ago and it is near perfect. 34 more years to 40 and I want to take it slow it is so good. We camped at Myrtle Beach and it was exteremely very romantic.
I'll bet your VW was the model where if you ran out of gas, you flipped a lever for an extra gallon and knew to head for the nearest gas station.

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Sharon Hamilton - June 28, 2011

Anthony!
Yes, you are right about the car. Sounds like you have some experience with VWs. The capsite took up an offering, and we left for Barcelona (the American Consulate) with a whole $36. in our pockets. He got us a small loan and a new passport for Don so we could get over the border.

Would like to have that body again, but hey, at least we have the love.

Good luck on the 6, which is no easy feat. But I can tell you'll make it. Thanks for stopping by.

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