Boomers Write 3rd Place Winner
Boomers Write Short Story Contest 2008

50 Years of Learning

By Dorothy Casper

It was delightful to watch as the friends and relatives gathered in the cultural hall of the church to congratulate and wish the couple well, whom were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. The room was beautifully decorated with momentous scenes throughout their lives growing up and later together.
The joyous sound of laughter was heard all over the room as the guest mingled throughout and as they enjoyed the delicious buffet. They each had moments to share that they had had with the honored couple.
As the couple was ushered to two high back king and queen chairs the program began. Listening, memory served me well, of the past years of my life. The oldest son began the introduction along with his gratitude to those attending to honor his parents. A beautiful well-written program included the four children, their mates, 12 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild. Posterity, their heirs, I believe it's called, were nervous wanting to do the very best for the couple whom they all loved in different ways and for different reasons.
As I listened I wondered, "what brought this family to this point? Did they have some kind of formula to teach by, to learn from, to have this tremendous gathering?"
As each child took part there was humor, tears and beautiful talent displayed. Viewing the esteemed couple one could see their hands entwined as they had done so much in the past 56 years. Anyone who had known them previously had often seen this same devotion.
Then the music began and the couple was highlighted in pictures from a very young age until the present time. The 50's music set everyone attending tapping their toes, smiling and many just remembering, their own bygone years.
It was over much too, soon. As the couple was called to the microphone, the clapping was deafening. The children and grandchildren stood smiling at the couple who meant so much to them and thinking to themselves, "I want to be just like them - still holding hands after 56 years - still in love."
Still holding hands, they approached the microphone together. "Words elude me, and my heart is so full of joy for my family and for all of you kind friends who came to wish us well," she said. Then she introduced each member of the family and it was obvious she could have said something endearing about each one. He moved a little closer as he began to speak, expressing his gratitude to the family as well to everyone attending and then turning to her he gave her a hug and kiss. With his arms still around her he said, "It's been a good trip, honey - It's been a good trip."
Now, as I sit at my computer, I am contemplating just what he meant by… it's been a good trip. The meaning sinks in - although there were many ups and downs - hardships - joyous times and sad times, as every family has, maybe, just maybe, the answer lies in continually saying and showing and meaning, "I Love You." Perhaps that is the answer for everyone - to care - to love in spite of.