Several months ago I wrote about Bruce and my marriage ceremony in Eureka Springs, AR. It was delightfully funny and I assume legal. That post can be read here.
I thought it might be fun to tell how we met. We met via the Internet in 1998, back when things were much nicer online. I was housesitting for a friend who had WebTV and came across a dating site. It was free for women, so I put a small listing on, no photo. A week or so later I was visiting my friend and she asked if I wanted to check my email since I usually used the computer at the library.
Much to my surprise I had a message from a guy to my little ad. (There were a couple of dirty replies too, which I deleted) This was a very well written letter, not too personal, written by a man in my age group. (I was then 56, he was 63) Then I got to the very last line which read something like this, “Since I live right here in Springfield…” What? Here? I was so surprised I had to reread the message 2 or 3 times. “What shall I do?” I asked my friend. Of course, I answered him, gave him my phone number, and went home wondering if I’d done the right thing.
OK, here is the stranger part of the tale. At that time I was unemployed, broker than broke, and was preparing to move out of my apartment the end of the month. This was not the time to meet anyone, much less think of romance. However, I waited for the phone to ring. The next day I went to the library and sent him the second email. After all I was moving out of Springfield in 2 weeks, I didn’t have time to be coy.
Meanwhile on the opposite side of town my prince charming couldn’t remember how to turn the computer on and get online. He only had had the computer a short time, didn’t know too much about it. To this day I think my guardian angel helped him connect and find his email.
Bruce called on Monday; we talked for a very long time. It turned out we knew many of the same people, which isn’t too unusual in a town as small as Springfield. He shared how he had recently lost his wife from cancer, they were married 39 years. You could hear the sadness in his voice.
We decided to meet at a nearby Hardee’s on Wednesday for coffee. I think I knew the minute we met we were going to be together. He wasn’t sure what to think; after all it had been over 40 years since he had gone courting.
The following Saturday he took me to Kansas City to a casino. It gave us a chance to visit, although I’m sure I was so nervous I talked too fast and nonstop. On the way home he put in a Roger Williams CD. Rogers Williams can play the piano like no one else and I had been fan of his for a long time. Again, this was fate, how else could two strangers like the same romantic music.
OK, I’ll close this chapter except for one little story. We were acting like teenagers and decided we would for then on be Mr. and Miss Rendezvous. Even now I occasionally call him “Mr. R” and then smile.