There’s more than one incurable romantic in this genealogy Twitter-verse, you know.
This gentlemanly Rabbit was quite the Olde World charmer in his day, Dearies — but don’t take my word for it, just ask MiLady.
So as per the FEB 28th dare of Randy’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun,
I was minding my own business at home, a single-again Dad recently retired from the Army, with three little men (9, 6 and 4) — that’s right, four bachelors crazy for Lego, Bionicle, Transformers and wooden Thomas the Tank Engine train sets!
But when the lads were asleep, I unwound for a bit most nights by re-writing my genealogy notes into WordPerfect; but I also wrote a bit of poetry to clear my head on those late nights when I couldn’t sleep.
It wasn’t that long ago, December 2000, when I got an e-mail from a woman who gushed on and on about my poetry website that she just found!
She laughed, she cried. Then she laughed so hard, she cried some more! She complimented me on my gifts to tell life stories in simple, common English but present it in rhyming two-line “couplets” like Shakespeare’s writings.
Then she asked how difficult it was to write like that and how long I had been doing so.
“I’m gonna make her day,” I thought. (Yes, I wrote in verse, just a couple of lines.).
After sending off my reply, I resumed my genealogy work.
Now, I swear it was only ten minutes, when the next e-mail chirped its arrival.
Her again, I soon discovered. Opening her reply I was overwhelmed, it was two pages long!
(How did she do that in ten minutes?!?)
“Oh, well,” I shrugged, “no matter.”
So, I answered her e-mail /
The same as the first;
With a wee bit of humour /
And, yes, all in verse!
Needless to say, I did a lot of typing but not very much of it genealogy.
I learned early on that MiLady lived near the Rocky Mountains, while I was near the Great Lakes area, which created a two-hour time difference.
She worked in a psychiatric hospital, which was a blessing in handling my odd sense of humour.
By Valentine’s Day, we decided to try a phone call or two. So, late that night, we connected and talked for over six hours!
The time just sped by! It seemed like we barely got acquainted when I saw the red LED clock glowing 5:00am!
It was like an addiction — a very nasty habit: we talked every other night.
And it was so nice to have these conversations with another adult that did not involve robots, magical cartoon ponies, fruit-flavoured dollies or a purple dinosaur!
But, MiLady’s melodic voice would soon be silenced within a fortnight, when my phone company billed me over $500 for our fourteen calls!
It took some investigating, but MiLady eventually found ICQ a social programme predecessor of MSN. We tried it, but it wasn’t the same. Allow me to explain:
MiLady would send “routine” messages that filled my entire orange (monochrome) screen! She would then go to the kitchen, make some coffee, enjoy it with a cigarette then go back to her computer and wait another five minutes for my two sentence reply!
I, on the other hand, after sending my message would no sooner stand up from my chair, when the screen of my 486 would fill again! (Methinks this is when I should mention that I was using dial up!).
Then MiLady found out that MSN could handle voice; and our all-night conversations began again minus the $500 phone bills.
By May, we agreed that a meeting was needed. Sending money for her flight, MiLady came to Ontario for two weeks!
It was the end of June, her arrival date! It was almost 40°C in the shade (or 104°F), when she stepped off the plane and walked into the terminal.
Junior was the first to catch her eye. Smiling, he offered her a cold tin of soda — even then, he was almost as tall as she was!
Next up was Captain, tugging at her luggage with the intent to strap them on the fold-up, wheeled carrier he had and port them around for her!
Then, my three-foot-tall Chef shuffled out, hiding behind the stem of a swaying, red rose that towered over his head.
With my young army men surrounding her, I stepped forward and then …
Our eyes met and we knew.