I'm past 60 where life seems a little quieter, more patient, less demanding, less contentious. Folks long gone are more remembered; childhood is more missed, youth is forgiven. With the grey hair, that I'm still vain enough to dye, has come the understanding that life isn't forever and if I have something left to do, I better get with it.
I come from a long line of love. My grandparents were married 63 years before my grandma died, my parents just a month short of 50 years when my dad passed away.
A cousin of one of my few cousins introduced us at a Ray Hunt Horsemanship Clinic. I thought he was way older than me (he's 6 months younger). He says he thought I was way out of his league. He was homely, skinny and poor. He bought me orange pop and sat by me in the bleachers because both of us could only afford to watch. I was supposed to be at school and he was supposed to be spraying crop (but it was too windy).
The last day of the clinic he invited me to go for coffee. We visited in the Cafe until they kicked us out and locked the doors for the night then we drove around till 2:00 AM. Somewhere in that short time I fell in love with my cowboy.
Finally, he parked the pickup in front of my parents house. I wanted to see him again but didn't quite know how to let him know. I thought: "I could kiss him. No. Then he might think I was too forward or easy." I said: "I really gotta go in."
He said: "Can I kiss you." I smiled. Sounds corny but honestly there were fireworks exploding all around me. We made arrangements for a date the next night and I floated up the walk to the front door.
When I opened it I wondered: "Is he the one?" and a clear voice from behind the door said: "That's the man you're going to marry." Stunned, I looked behind the door. There was no one there. I knew there couldn't be. There wasn't enough room.
My mom was sitting in the chair in the living room, waiting up for me, and curious about my behavior asked: "Are you OK?" I said: "Yes." and floated up the stairs to my bedroom where I cried all night to think that I had finally found him. We were married 6 weeks later. That was 33 years ago.
I think what really cinched it for him was the night he took me riding on Buck with only that old buckskin horse of his and the full moon to watch us kissing. It's still the most romantic thing I've ever done.
They had Ray Hunt Clinics that same time of year for a few years after and we always went to watch. We would sit in our spot on the bleachers and he would buy me an orange pop. Ray and everyone there knew how we met and that we were celebrating our anniversary in our own way. I always say we got married 'cause of Ray Hunt and I think Ray thought so too.