Twenty Years (and one day)

Married couple laughing by the sea

May 15, 1999, Beavertail Lighthouse, Jamestown, Rhode Island: The newlyweds laughing during a photoshot on the rocks by the sea (while all of their wedding guests drink all of the booze before they got back. Luckily the staff stashed a single bottle of Gewurtztraminer for them!)

Bride on a boat
Ann on the Aurora wearing a jacket over her dress

Yesterday was our 20th Wedding Anniversary. I meant to write something then, but work was busy and then Ann and I were out all evening at dinner and then at trivia. The day was a gorgeous day, far nicer than yesterday was (and yesterday was not bad, just a bit chilly and some on and off spitting rain.) Our wedding was held in Jamestown at the New American Baptist church, presided over by a Unitarian Minister reading a ceremony that we mostly wrote. Friends spoke and sang. My niece, who was around six at the time, was the flower girl and wanted to strew rose petals as she came down the aisle. But we had no rose petals so she pulled the heads off the flowers she was carrying and beaned people with them instead. We had a wedding scroll that people signed. We took pictures at Beavertail Lighthouse and we had a reception on Goat Island in Newport. And after all that, we had a three hour tour (a three hour tour 🎶) of the bay on the schooner Aurora (it was freezing by then and few were dressed for it. So, that happened.) The day was wonderful.

The next day we wore these fun and campy baseball caps that read BRIDE and GROOM. We wandered the piers of Newport visiting various stores. We split up at one point and I went into a Ben & Jerry’s to get some ice cream. The woman working there took one look at me, looked around, asked me where “BRIDE” was and when I said I wasn’t sure, she stuck her head out the window and began shouting, “BRIDE! BRIDE!” She realized soon after that she had been in Jamestown the day before and had actually seen us going into or coming out of the church.

“To twenty years: a good beginning.”

The next day we flew to Italy for a two week long honeymoon (from which exactly five photos exist as we forgot our camera.)

There are lots of stories from those days and I do enjoy telling them. But I will hold the ones I haven’t told here yet for another day. Twenty years seems like a long time when you are looking forward. When looking back, it seems quite short. So many things feel like yesterday. But one thing is constant: I won the lottery. I married my best friend, someone who makes me, in every way, a better person. And I found someone who can put up with me (no small feat, that) and who actually seems to (mostly) enjoy it.

I’ll end this with the words I said last night during our complimentary Prosecco toast: “To twenty years: a good beginning.”