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Archive for June 24th, 2007

Awhanee anniversary dinner

Originally uploaded by karing1960@sbcglobal.net.

Our 28th wedding anniversary was on Saturday June 16. Mike had made dinner reservations for us at The Awhanee Hotel’s dining room in Yosemite National Park. The reservations were at 5:30 that day, but we wanted to get to the hotel early so we could walk around a little bit. It’s quite an unusual hotel and very interesting to see the Native American designs and the decor itself. The Awhanee is celebrating it’s 80th birthday this year. After a little while of walking around, we settled ourselves down at some chairs in the great hall. We still had an hour and a half until our dinner engagement. As we were relaxing, Mike was admiring the nine-foot Steinway grand piano that he could not play because it was locked.  Shortly thereafter, a man came by us and started to unlock the piano.   He had come to play for the hotel’s tea time at 4pm. What a treat it was to hear him play so beautifully. After awhile, Mike started talking to him. The man was named Christor, and he was from Sweden. He has been playing at the Awhanee for the past 8 years. It’s like a vacation job. Christor also told us that this Steinway was one of five Steinways in the world that were actually signed by Leo Steinway himself.  That Steinway has been at the Awhanee since it opened 80 years ago.  Mike asked Christor if he could play a special song for us. He told Christor that it was our 28th wedding anniversary and asked if he knew the song, “We’ve Only Just Begun”. That song was sung at our wedding. As he began to play it, I could feel tears well up in my eyes remembering our wedding and all the years we’ve been together since then. After about an hour of his beautiful playing, Christor headed over to the dining hall to play there. That meant we would get to hear his playing again. We were happy. When 5:30 rolled around, we headed over to the huge dining hall. As we were being escorted to our table, Christor spotted us and began playing our song again. It felt like the wedding all over again, and the tears started filling both Mike’s and my eyes once more.  As we were led to our table, we passed Christor, who was smiling broadly at us.  We in turn flashed our smiles of gratitude and thanks.   We were then seated at a table called “The Queen’s Table. Queen Elizabeth had sat at this table when she visited Yosemite years ago. I was also told that the Princess of Thailand had just sat at this table a few days before. We had an awesome view of Yosemite falls out the large window in front of us. The service was superb, and the food was delicious. It was a wonderful dinner that neither Mike nor I will forget. I thank God for bringing us together.

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