Major players in the story:
George - 24 years old...in the army.
Judith - 19 years old...college student at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago
One day George's friend Jane (I don't really know her name so we'll call her Jane for the heck of it) told him that she had a friend, Judith, and she thought that they'd get along great together. Being the adventurer that he was *coughnotcough* he got Judith's number from Jane and decided to call her. Jane told Judith to expect the call but Judith just wasn't holding her breath.
Lo and behold George called Judith one day not long after and they had a 3.5 hour conversation on the phone. Now George wasn't quite sure what to think of Judith after he got off of the phone with her. She was so sarcastic! But he really had enjoyed talking to her so he thought maybe he could overlook the sarcasm.
So 2 days later Judith was visiting her parents for the weekend in Indiana and was about to leave to catch a train back to Chicago when she got a phone call from Jane. Jane said that George wanted to meet her and that he would be at the train station when Judith got in and she would recognize him because he's be wearing his dress blues. Judith said fine and hurried on her way. The problem was, Judith had no friggin clue what dress blues looked like.
Judith got off the train and waited around for a while for the crowd to thin out and then saw a man in a uniform. She walked up to him and asked him what hotel he worked as a bell hop in. George was not a fan of that line, to say the least, but Judith was so pretty that he figured he'd ignore it. George took Judith out for dinner to George Diamond's Steak House in downtown Chicago (which has since burned down from what I understand) where they got along famously and he then took her back to her dorm. Needless to say that by the end of the night they were both suffering from love at first sight...and George was learning to appreciate the sarcasm.
They talked on the phone all that week and then the next weekend went to go see the movie South Pacific. While in the theater George leaned over, and being the uber romantic guy that he is, said, "Let's get hitched". Judith just looked at him and told him he was crazy but he said he was serious. Judith thought about it for about a minute and a half and decided that they should go for it.
George and Judith decided to get married the following Friday but sometime that week decided to wait another week as they didn't want to have their nuptials on Friday the 13th. So on March 20, 1959 George and Judith got married in the West Pullman Church of God there in Chicago. After the ceremony the minister asked what they were going to do and they said that they were just going downtown so the minister said that the church was having a missionary dinner and invited them to join them and they'd be the guests of honor. They accepted and though they didn't have a wedding cake they had a wonderful apple crisp to celebrate with.
George and Judith are my parents and this past Friday they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. According to both of them despite their times of trial during the past 50 years - having 4 kids in 5 years, money issues, parental problems - it has been wonderful marriage.
On their anniversary my siblings and I threw a surprise party for them to celebrate this wonderful occasion and it was incredible. My parents were thrilled and overwhelmed and my dad even started crying (he'll deny that if asked). My mother is a Presbyterian minister and we had one of her good friends, who's also a Presbyterian minister, do a renewal of vow ceremony and there wasn't a dry eye in the house.
So many times I read in my romance novels about people falling in love in a day, or 2 days or even a week and I scoff. I do, I admit it. But then I look at my parents and realize that it can happen in "real" life - and last.Congratulations Mom and Dad. I love you with all my heart!