The King and I

Gloria - Salinas, California
Entered on August 24, 2008
Age Group: 50 - 65
Themes: family, love

When I was young and after the last boy friend, who proved to be good looking, very generous, but unable to keep his promises, I went out with one of the employees where I worked. We had a lot in common and liked many of the same things. I should also mention that he was four years younger than me. I had no intention of anything serious happening between us.

My passion was music, which he enjoyed also. One of our trips together was to Los Angeles to see Yul Brynner and Patricia Morison in “The King and I.” (I still have that program). We had very good seats, in the first five rows. It was a wonderful show.

After about a year of dating, including taking me to my piano lessons with a teacher in Los Angeles, on a Friday night, in a very old and well used car, (Los Angeles was twenty-five miles away), and a memorable weekend during thanksgiving in San Franciso, where his parents lived. We were soon engaged to be married. I was then 24 and worried about being single too long. I remember one lady, at the health department, looking at our ages, remarked, “How can you marry someone so young?”.

Our life together was interesting and never dull. He got an education with a bachelors detree in Advertising, and we spent two years on the East Coast at the expense of the Government. He was stationed at the Pentagon. I taught school.

We returned to California. We had two children and settled in San Jose.

I learned from him to work hard for what you want, in spite of obstacles and disappointments. There were five jobs in advertising, which he got after graduating, from which he was let go. The last time, he sat at home at a desk for a week, talking to executives from different companies, for a chance to present an advertising campaign, for their approval. He finally was accepted by the principal of a large company, who gave him a chance. When he presented the campaign, he got the job, and was able to start his own advertising agency. He was successful and we celebrated his success with a party in San Francisco with friends and clients.

For our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, we went to England and at the London, Palladium, saw, Yul Brynner, (with a different leading lady) again in “The King and I.” We took our two children with us, this time. All of us enjoyed the performance and we agreed it was the perfect way to spend our anniversay.

This was to be our last year together. In April of the following year, he developed cancer and died.

In retrospect, the triumphs, failures and good times, turned out to be remembering the ordinary times. The night we spent at the laundromat waiting for the dryer to finish drying our clothes, going to the grocery store together, and driving across the country in a Volkswagon, loaded with all our worldly possessions, for a year on the East Coast.

We spent our life on a merry-go-round, always trying to catch the next ring, we were just happy being togher.