Thinking back over the years of bad dates and good dates brings both awesome and bittersweet experiences to the surface. How do so many vibrant memories of everything stay crammed into our overloaded brains until the right question releases them?
After 44 years of an up-and-down marriage, I found myself widowed. No more good dates or bad dates now. But the best date ever was our honeymoon in Hawaii. We rented a car and drove the backroads of Oahu, Hawaii, Maui and Kauai, where we saw instances of the real Hawaiian culture, as well as colorful native Polynesian shows and savory luaus that teased our taste buds at the big city hotels and elsewhere.
Tickets for shows and luaus were expensive even then, so we didn’t attend that many, appreciating the few treats for ourselves even more. We even ate lunch in the rain at McDonalds! And I managed to spill a strawberry milkshake in the rental car near Hilo. Not that my husband had forgotten how to drive a stick shift but he certainly contributed to the strawberry mess we tried to clean up after that jackrabbit start back onto the highway. And I couldn’t criticize anyway, since I’d never learned to drive a stick shift at all.
We also jumped in surprise at finding lizards hiding under the bathroom hand towels, even in the posher hotels. Definitely a green solution to any bugs in the days before the environment was of any concern to anyone on the mainland. Lizards were also clinging to the outside walls from dusk onwards, so gorged on moths lured by the outside lights they could not swallow any more.
My good dates were not always with my future husband. There were others before him. Nor was the date where we got engaged the only one like that. There had been another proposal and another engagement ring seven years earlier. I had not wanted that one and returned it a few weeks later, promptly finding myself being stalked by a jealous Italian who wouldn’t take “no” for an answer. Those were annoying days but I didn’t realize until later how badly things could have turned out.
I was blessed to avoid serious consequences from the rejected suitor and his control freak mother and sisters, and even more blessed to have a marriage that lasted. Now I look forward to our reunion in Heaven where our next and best date of all will be Eternal. Not even Hawaii can match that!