Sailing down the river of marital bliss

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Editor's note: This column was originally published May 6, 1995.

Yes, I'm married. Even I don't believe it. Every so often, I look down at my genuine Diamonelle and plain gold band to remind myself of the vows I took a week ago yesterday.

Let's get some common questions answered first. No, my ring ISN'T fake. I was just kidding. Yes, the marriage was to Ex-Mr. Dreams. We made our home in Sikeston, which is halfway between our jobs. No, I didn't wear white. I wore black -- draw your own conclusions.

We semi-eloped. Everyone in the office knew because I have a big mouth. Some members of his family knew, but no one in my family knew. So the wedding, conducted Friday, April 28, in the gazebo across the street from the Southeast Missourian, was attended by lots of people from the office, four members of Ex-Mr. Dreams' family and one friend from out of town.

Maybe I didn't tell many people so they couldn't say how stupid the idea was. After all, The Hope of My Dreams became Ex-Mr. Dreams last year when he ran screaming from our engagement photo session.

Okay, I'm exaggerating. But we both had some major problems to be worked out, and I think the seven months in different towns was good for us. It gave Ex-Mr. Dreams time to realize that he wasn't the only man on earth who would give me a second glance. There are a LOT of men who would give me a second glance.

I just don't know where they are.

Anyway, I ran into a newspaper subscriber at an adult beverage establishment a few hours after my wedding. She had listened to my conversation, determined I was married and predicted I would stop being the voice of single women everywhere.

Ouch. Maybe so, but I promise I'll never look at a single friend, shake my head and say, "Girl, I'm SO glad not to be out there anymore. There aren't ANY men left at all." Married women always said that to me. Translation: My big, ugly husband was the last decent man around and I got him, so go join a convent or something.

My wedding day was pretty exciting. It began bright and early at 6:30 a.m. Additional sleep was out of the question, so I started loading stuff into my car, stopping to throw up in the parking lot of La Casa de la Cucaracha due to nerves.

Yuck.

Lynn, my maid of honor, helped me move a load of stuff to my new apartment, then helped me prepare a million other things for the big event. Ex-Mr. Dreams, on the other hand, had the difficult task of just showing up.

With a minute to go before the wedding, everyone was present except the best man. He came running across the lawn buttoning his pants. It was to set the tone for the rest of the day.

Of course, the old man and I invited everyone back to my apartment for cake and punch.

We should have known something was wrong when we walked in to find Ramses furiously licking his paws. The cat had jumped on top of the cake box and fallen through the cellophane top, leaving four neat paw prints in the middle of the cake. There was icing all over the top of the refrigerator. Nobody wanted cake.

But I wore something old (an antique handkerchief), something new (my outfit), something borrowed (a garnet ring of Lynn's) and something blue (a sapphire ring of Lynn's). We're bound to have good luck in the future.

By the way, does anyone have a good, new name for Ex-Mr. Dreams?

Heidi Hall is a former managing editor for the Southeast Missourian. She now lives in St. Petersburg, Fla.

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