All the women and most of the men were sitting in the livingroom, taking turns holding the new baby. Secret Santa ideas were discussed quietly between some as other discussions were taking place too. The head of the household stood up with a big grin on his face, beaming at the faces that stopped talking to see what story would come next.
“It was 50 years ago this Christmas I met my wife.”
The group looked around, smiling checking out each persons response, knowing it was going to be a good story. “General Paul Tibbetts, the man who dropped the bomb on
Hiroshima, came up and said son, what are you doing tonight?” I really didn’t know, but he said “Tonight is a good night to take off and take a gal to dinner.” It was Christmas day, December 25, 1956. The man looked at his buddy and said “Who am I going to take out at this short notice on Christmas day?” His buddy replied a blinde date of course. His girlfriend had a friend who moved to SAvannah 4 months ago. She doesn’t really know that anybody, so a a double date would be perfect. “Ahh, I don’t have any money, my clothes are dirty, maybe not tonight” Ahhh forget that, his friend said. I have an extra sport coat and five dollars.
The family, laughed while listening to the story, five dollars, woah that’s not much money. One of the uncles looked over and said, $5 bucks in “56” was a lot. The date was put into motion, the young man showed up at the girls house only to be greeted by a young 17 year old redhead. She looked very young, so instead of making eye contact, he looked past her telling her he was picking up her sister, Connie. “That’s me!” She invited him into her home, where he watched her point her hand to a coat draped over the chair. Hmmm, what am I suppose to do now. She picked up the coat, handed it to him. “This girl had class, so somehow she worked it so he was helping her to put her coat on”
They went on the date, he brought her home, stared into her eyes, smiled and said he had a nice time, maybe they could go out again. He shook her hand, because “She had class and I wanted to do things right” After all, she was a southern gal.
The man’s friend once again, brought up that they were going out on New Year’s Eve, get a date. The young man pulled out his black book, called all his girlfriends but they already had plans on short notice. The last number he called was the young 17 year old he had taken out recently. She accepted.
The tradition in Savannah, Georgia on New Years Eve, was that everybody brought their Christmas tree to this location and stacked them for a huge bonfire. The pile was high, maybe as high as our house. They watched the fire, he took her home and decided he would give her a kiss goodnight. “I knew that when I kissed her, it was the right one. I had her hooked” The young lady, 50 years later, sitting next to me, smiled and said “Well I remember thinking it was a Carson City kiss…..I gave him a kiss and he found out what a real kiss was.” A year later they were married in that great town of Savannah and in “59” had their first child, me.
We sat watching my parents smile at each other, both with pride and love….sharing a secret between the two as they watched each other across the room. “We’re going to the Bay area for New years this year.” I asked, is this to celebrate the 50th? “No, we’re just going there” I looked over at my mom who had a tear in her eye, smiling at my dad looking as if it was a first date. My dad wiped at his eye with the same look back.
Here’s to 50 years with Red & Connie, forever a Carson Boy.