The Date in the Park

May 28, 2014

A date in a park on a hot summer day……Trinity Park in Fort Worth, Texas.


Our second date was unusual, I think.  How many folks  have a picnic on a table in a park with German food and beer on a hot summer day? Well, we did that the weekend after our first date.

I had gone to the German deli in Grapevine and got some sausage and cheese, and I bought some German beer at Hall’s Market south of there.  Hall’s had a huge selection of imported beer, so I got some good German brew and put it on ice for the outing.

You once more came over to my house, and we saddled up and drove to Trinity Park.  The day was pretty hot, and I was reminded of the infamous Mayfest storm that had plowed through there and destroyed the Mayfest event along with a billion dollars of damage to homes, cars, and businesses.  Plus, it killed a few people. But no hail storm was forecast that day—just sun, fair weather clouds, and of course, high humidity, which put us in the shade on a picnic table by the truck.

We spread out the goodies and opened the cold beer, ate, and talked for a long time about a lot of stuff—even things in our lives that were very painful to us.  But we were comfortable with each other that day, and we opened up a lot to each other on topics that were intimate,  personal, and sometimes hard to talk about.  I do not think most people are inclined to do that so soon with someone, but we did; and I think it increased our attraction to each other quite a bit.  Not that we needed much encouragement then.

Many people seem to think that when you go on a date, you have do something dramatic and spend a large amount of money to impress the other person.  But we did not do that on that fine day.  We just enjoyed the simple pleasures of some good food and fine beer, so the drama was in what we talked about and how it brought us closer together. 

That was the play we acted out on the stage of life that day. It was a good thing to do. Not some contrived and overdone production that many are prone to do. There are many people in life, who do not seem to be able to appreciate doing something simple.  That is their loss, since simple things are sometimes the seed from which something greater sprouts and grows.  Just as our talk over lunch in the park was one of the seeds for our budding relationship on that hot and wonderful July day in the park.


Do You Remember?

May 5, 2014

This is the last Note in “Days Remembered” and is very different than all of the others. In a way it sums up the entire book and has a ghostly or haunting feel to it. In “Notes To My Kids” I did a regular Note that summed it up too called “Time’s A Funny Thing”. I’ll do something similar in the fourth book. Instead of calling such an exit a “conclusion” I will call it a “summation” since it sums up the themes in the book.

As an aside, the points here could be the source of another “Notes To Stephanie” book one day……..


Do you remember our CERT class graduation exercise when I drafted you as my “buddy” to see who was “hurt” and who was “dead”?

Do you remember when I tried to teach you to dance, so we could go dancing one night?

Do you remember our wedding party? Devoid of my family, but we had yours and our friends?

Do you remember eating breakfast at Dos Molinas? The taste of menudo, barbacoa, and a beer?

Do you remember the time we ate goat on Seminary Drive, and it wasn’t so good?

Do you remember Toby the kitten flying through the air from the game room upstairs into my arms?

Do you remember eating BBQ at Railhead and Angelo’s with a couple of beers? Eating Indian buffet after church and gorging at Taco Palinque and the Turkey Shop, too?

Do you remember your son in the ER and mine so sick in the ICU?

Do you remember shopping for a car? Looking at Hondas, Toyotas, Saturns, and more and buying the Camry you named Miss Precious and held so dear?

Do you remember moving your son? Loading up the truck and carting his stuff?

Do you remember how I listened to you when you had a hard time at school?

Do you remember cuddling so close at night in the bed to keep us both warm?

Do you remember going to garage sales on Saturdays and how I was bored?

Do you remember how we doted over each other when we were sick or felt bad?

Do you remember the time we took a bubble bath in the tub? Some suds, some drinks, and then some love?

Do you remember how we talked on the phone on the way to work and on the way home, too?

Do you remember buying that concrete fairy for the front door, and Jimmy and I laughing at all of the stuff there?

Do you remember the sets of Dickens books I gave you that you read in bed?

Do you remember buying those pots for plants to go by the front door?

Do you remember having a Coors Light with lime and some salt in the pool?

Do you remember how we got the oil changed on the car and the truck, keeping Lord Grey and Miss Precious happy and running so smooth?

Do you remember worrying about Jimmy in the middle of the night and going to see if he was okay?

Do you remember walking through Half Price Books on many a day?

Do you remember going to the Greek food festival in Dallas and the one in Fort Worth, too?

Do you remember going to the Main Street Art Festival and swimming through the crowds?

Do you remember how I made you waffles for breakfast and other good things, too?

Do you remember going to the school on Saturdays while I watched you work?

Do you remember hanging our clothes on the line between the trees to dry?

Do you remember taking walks in the park after dinner?

Do you remember how we held hands when we sat in Unity Church?

Do you remember when you bought me house shoes that I did not want to wear?

Do you remember the rocking chair you bought me at the garage sale near the house?

Do you remember your son’s troubles with cars and the “Last Ride” of my old Ford?

Do you remember eating cold water melon in the pool on a hot summer day?

Do you remember…?

Do you…?



Do you remember the days when we thought we were right? Days full of wonder, days without strife? Days when only love cast its bright light?

Do you remember the days when we were one? Days now just remembered and gone? I remember those days; I guess you do, too.