Today, December 15, 2015, marks 36 years.
That’s 432 months.
Or 1872 weeks.
Which encompasses 13,149 days (including nine February 29s for Leap Years).
And that’s 11,353,176 hours or 681,190,560 minutes that Amy and I have been married.
Wow. When you look at that in actual times, it seems like a long, long time.
So why does it seem like yesterday when we stood in the living room of the Rev. Lawrence Jackman’s home in Alton, Illinois, to exchange vows in front of his wife, two children and two pets.
We met as cast members of a charity melodrama staged by the Alton Little Theater Company. She was a professional actress who had served as the resident heroine in the Goldenrod Showboat melodramas on the St. Louis riverfront and was, naturally, the heroine. I was a hard-partying newspaper reporter/photographer/columnist who was the show’s villain. When we emerged from the production as a couple, some said it was “the only time in a melodrama where the villain got the heroine.”
Our marriage vows started a journey together that left Alton a couple of years after the marriage and took us to Washington, DC, where I served for a time as a Congressional aide, a political operative and political director for the National Association of Realtors.
Amy returned to Alton once to direct a play, worked on a project with Al Pacino and other activities in New York and consulted on political campaigns for The Eddie Mahe Company.
Our 23 years in Washington included worldwide travel to Israel, Paris and England for work, vacations in England, the Caribbean and Hawaii. My jobs took me to Taiwan, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Stockholm, Hong Kong and other places. We spent New Year’s Eve in London, watched Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade in New York and watched a new century begin on the National Mall in Washington.
I returned to journalism and covered history unfolding in Washington and around the world. I was at the Pentagon on 9/11, shooting photos and covering the horror.
It was an incredible, grand time to witness the world around us and enjoy our love for each other. It was, and still is, a whirlwind ride together that seems to have gone past so fast and so furious.
We pause this morning to wish each other a Happy Anniversary. My near-fatal motorcycle accident in 2012 slowed things down a bit but I got through it with the love of a good woman and support from many friends.
Her back surgery earlier this year brought some changes to our lifestyle but she is recovering, again with the help of a loving husband and support from friends.
We have been blessed with a great life together in a great country at a great time in our history.
Thank you Amy for 36 fantastic years. May we have many more.