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Archive for February 3rd, 2007

karebub-yosemite-june2006.jpgFebruary 2 is a very special day to Mike and me.  No, it’s not because it’s Groundhog Day, and by the way, looks like spring is going to come early this year. Yippee!  No, the reason we deem this a special day is because 32 years ago on this day, we met!  At the tender ages of 14 and 15, our story begins.   This is how it happened: My cousins invited my sister Carol, brother Tom and I to go to the local roller rink to skate.  It was a Sunday night, and the skating session was from 2-5pm.  I had not been skating in a long time, so when I made it out on the rink, I was wobbly at best!  About two hours or so into it, the referees called for all the girls to gather on one end of the rink and all the guys on the other end.  This session was called “multiplying couples”, and the way it worked was that someone would ask someone else to skate.  When the referee blew his whistle, the couple had to break up and each had to go ask someone else to skate; hence the term, multiplying couples.  Unbeknownst to me, Mike had been following me around the rink for the past two hours.  He was smitten, but too chicken to ask me to skate.  When the multiplying couples session started, before he could go ask me to skate, another girl asked him.  He figured this would be his chance to get out there in the rink and hoped that the referee would blow his whistle soon so he could come ask me to skate.  After eons, the whistle blew, and Mike made his move to come ask me.  However, the girl would not let go of his hand.  After several seconds, he made it clear that it was time to split up.  Then he made a beeline for me.  I had no idea any of this was going on at the time.  I was just a shy, skinny girl who did not think any boy would ever take an interest in me.  I was hiding behind a group of girls when Mike skated up and said, “Would you like to skate”?  All of a sudden the crowd parted and there I was facing Mike.  “Who me”, I asked.  “Yes”, he said.  And that was the start of our 32-year relationship.  As he literally dragged me around the rink while I tripped and stumbled, I thought he would never want to skate with or see me again.  I was such a klutz.  But he came back to the rink the next weekend, and amazingly, so did I.  It was a miracle though that I even made it.  I was flat broke.  I had to beg my younger siblings to borrow money to be able to go.   Two days later, my grandparents were over at our home with us celebrating my soon-to-be 15th birthday.  In the midst of the celebration, a knock sounded on the front door.  Mom went to answer it, followed by my 5 other siblings.  Surprise!  It was Mike!  How did he know where I lived?  That in itself, is a miracle.  I had never given Mike my address.  He knew what city I lived in, but that was it.   And it was not a small town either.  There were about 20,000 in population.  Mike lived five miles from me, and in the dead of winter, he rode his 10-speed bike to my city. First he went to my high school, which was about six blocks from my home.  When he couldn’t find me there, he determined that he was going to find me if he had to knock on every door in the town I lived.  And he was going to start with the very next street he passed, which just “happened” to be the street I lived on.   He would ask the first person he saw if they knew a “Karen”.  He didn’t even know my last name.  The first person he encountered happened to be my cousin Lori.  Lori immediately recognized Mike from the roller rink and showed him where I lived.  Now some may call that a coincidence, but I call that Divine intervention.  And here we are 32 years later.  Mike told me the other night that he would do it all over again in a heartbeat.  And you know what, I would too!  Groundhog or no groundhog!

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