How we spent our 25th Wedding Anniversary (Daddy's Angle)

I began this on my flight over the Atlantic after spending one day and a couple hours celebrating our 25 plus year journey together as friends, husband and wife, lover, parents among other designations. It was most wonderful though brief, too brief!

In preparation for this milestone I had contemplated spending what little savings I had on purchasing something nice and sending it to Pëë.

For weeks unending I kept asking myself what I thought she would love more than anything else. I couldn't come up with anything that struck the right chord, then a light bulb went off in my thick head - my presence!

After being there for her surgery in November, and having to leave her before she had adequately recuperated, she hadn't seen me since. I thought my presence would be the best gift. To make it good it had to be a surprise.

The conspiracy:

I realized I needed assistance and assistants or co-conspirators to pull off the perfect surprise, and man, was it a surprise. 'You got me good!' She exclaimed.

Monday morning I got up and showered, I only used deodorant, no fragrance to alert her keen sense of smell.

Betsy and I journeyed to the airport parking and parted company as I took the shuttle to the airport. While there I sent her Skype messages that I was out shopping. Twice I had to erase them as the public address announcements at the airport got caught in the recordings. LOL! This lady with a Master's in Nursing Administration is no fool!

The flight, scheduled for departure at 5:20, was delayed for more than 1.5 hour. We boarded at 4:50. Weather was very bad so a considerable amount of time and fuel was spent on the tarmac. At one point we were number two for take off but thereafter denied by control.

The airplane had to return to the gate to be refueled.

After another wait we taxied and took off.

The flight was bumpy for the most part, after we crossed Cuba it smoothed out. All things considered it was a nice flight. Not many passengers were on board and we were seated like scatterered kernel set corn or what we Jamaicans call scatter grain corn.

I had an emergency exit window seat with no one beside me which afforded lots of leg room, chic comfort and no disturbance. I felt like I was traveling business class on an economy ticket.

We should have arrived in Jamaica at 6 we got there minutes to 9 pm.

I had a long wait nerve racking wait as my ride waited out of patience and left and was almost into St. Thomas when we landed. Brother K co-conspirator ll (my ride) was in on the act and was gracious enough to return to the airport for me.

In this conspiracy, the participants were seriously shortlisted, handpicked and kept at a bare minimum. I only coopted three, they had to be trustworthy, I couldn't allow Pëë to have the slightest inkling I would be there.

Bee,'Co-conspirator l' was in the loop at the very inception and had the task of having my dear wife go straight to her home after work then to a members meeting at church. This meeting would be tight.

Resulting from the delay, I began to fear that the meeting would be over before I got home and the great conspiracy foiled.

As we drove up to the gate I noticed the car wasn't present in the driveway.'I was as happy as a pig in mud!'

I thanked my brother and friend for all his help and entered my residence. I then called 'Emma' co-conspirator III to gain acces to the house. I was in and home free.

I had bought or otherwise secured a couple of items for Pëë, some she had requested and some I promised, plus her card. She was expecting them in the week, no definite day and she was expecting them from a usual personal delivery.

I placed the card I got for her and the other items on our bed.'Emma' was to let her know that a man stopped by and delivered those things. Which is true. The last time I checked I was still a man, not like Bruce Jenner. LOL!

I had a quick bite as I was very hungry. Only had my morning smoothie around 8am. I hid on the verandah and kept all my bags there. My phone was silenced and I sat in the dark. I heard a car coming and it sounded familiar. My heart pounded as the glow of the headlamps illuminated the drive way. Bee drove and as a door opened I could hear them having the most hilarious conversation; can't mention its contents here. Bee is the greatest at what she does, profession and other wise. I was giggling quietly and my heart was as if it was going to burst but I kept calm and still. They both entered the house and Bee whatsapped me wanting to know where I was. I rezapped her letting her know I was on the verandah. I could hear Pëë excitedly going through her delivered items. I heard Bee asking if she couldn't wait for tomorrow (remember this was Monday the 20th and Anniversary was Tuesday 21st) to open the card.

I zapped Bee again, telling her to have Pëë Skype me letting me know she got the items. This she did. I received the call with throbbing heart. In Skype I could see her going from bedroom to the bathroom where the light was brighter, bathroom to bedroom. She was excited, very excited! Do I need to tell you I was too?

It's great to have this feeling after 25 years!

Cryptic message:

Now the card is one of those with an insert. In essence making it eight pages. Page five has the pre printed message. l wrote my lovey dovey stuff below this with a pto for page six. On page six I wrote what I called the fineprint, so fine one would almost require a magnifying to read it.

In the Skype call Pëë told me the card was beautiful and lovely.

I asked her if she was sure she had read all of it. She seemed to be straining to read the fine print, I for a moment began to regret including this step in the process. However she read it all and her lightbulb went on. I saw newfound excitement. She said: turn on the light! Then she asked: you deh yah? (Are you here? For the uninitiated or patois challenged).

The fine print went something like this: I know more than anything you would have loved me being there on this such a special occasion and I would have loved that more than anything too... peradventure if you call loud enough I'd answer. This was when she asked if I was there. I said since you think I'm there have you checked everywhere? She went to Warren's room. Bee is now whatsapping me to be careful I burst her heart. I could hear her voice now both through Skype and in person. She kept asking: where are you? I couldn't bear it anymore I came out of the dark and hugged her and we cried together.

I take this opportunity to thank everyone for their kind wishes, words of encouragement, expressions of admiration and commendation.

The successes of the journey have been facilitated first and foremost by our Heavenly Father, our earthly parents, our immediate family, our church family, the staff and facilitators at the various hotels and venues we had marriage retreats, accepting that amid successes there'll be failures, marrying friends, respecting each other, truly loving each other, not allowing lack of a lot of money to prevent good times, our realization that it is indeed a partnership and taking it as a project (similar to gardening) which requires watering, nurturing and care, the examples of some old couples we've had the benefit of meeting - married for more years than the Bible ascribes to our years - showing that marriage is more that the dress, suits, hairdos and cake.

Pëë has been more closer to perfection than I could ever be. It may not be the perfect marriage, but it's close enough to perfect for us.

Persons who don't believe in God are sceptical when we say the secret to success is to put God first and also at the centre. You don't have to believe but it's the way it is.

Last night we went out had fun, serious discussions on the past, present and the future, the challenges and how they can be handled That was the first twenty five and we thank you Lord, at least one more 25 to go.

April 22, 2015