50th Anniversary



On October 15, 1966, I was married for the first time.

That day, like its counterpart 50 years later, was a bright sunny day in the Berkshires, with the autumn foliage on full display. When I think back on the next few years of my early twenties; a time of hope, and dreams of the future, I guess I could get maudlin about how things did not turn out entirely as I had wished. Instead, I find myself remembering most vividly the positive things that happened during those years.

Which is not to say that I have forgotten the agonies and the arguments and the negative experiences of those days. I wish I could say that I learned from my mistakes, but I’m not sure that I did. It would be many years in the future that I would learn of my autism, and be able to reflect on how not having that understanding contributed for most of my life to severe emotional instability.

I like to think, with what grains of wisdom I may have acquired in my old age, that I could have been more successful in my personal relationships in those days, but of course it is not possible to do things over. So I have to admit that, despite the many happy memories I carry with me, I do still remember the cloud that hung over me in those days.

The picture above is cropped from one I took on this anniversary day of a framed canvas reproduction of a 1955 painting by Bernard Buffet. This canvas was a gift from my wife, Deborah, and is one of the few artifacts I have of that marriage. She told me she was attracted to the painting because it reminded her so much of me.

Today (April 5, 2019), I was looking for Bidwell things to enhance my upcoming talk on The Bidwell House (part of my OLLI course), and I came upon this picture. It was only yesterday that I noticed Deborah’s comment on this post, and I thought it was appropriate to share this photo from that day. I may have a better-preserved copy somewhere, but the fates determined that I was to find this imperfect one.

Notice my watch, which was given to me by my grandmother Forbes. It was made by her for my grandfather when she worked in the Waltham Watch Company. It was a treasured possession of mine for many years; somewhere along the line I lost track of it.

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