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Jibralta
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52 minutes ago, mylolita said:

How long have you been together now!? And, can I ask, is marriage on the cards? 😉😉😉

It'll be nine years in July. As for marriage... we keep saying we will. But somehow we never do. It'll probably go the way of Toby Jones here, "Together 26, married 1..."

 

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I got sidetracked when I posted about the dogs the other day. What I meant to write about was the strange landscape of Italy. Not the postcard images that you see of vineyards and sunflowers (I have a story about that actually!) but the desolate, almost eerie regions that you see along the highways.

We watched Once Upon a Time in Hollywood the other night, and I learned that spaghetti westerns were shot in Italy. I never realized that! I always thought they were called "spaghetti westerns" because the directors were Italian, and Ennio Morricone wrote the soundtracks lol.

But, it made perfect sense to me. I remember the Italian landscape from our trip Rome to Naples, and then to Tuscany. It was very arid, not unlike portions of the American west. During that trip, I listened to two songs on loop as I stared out the window of the bus: Passacaglia, by Qntal and I Will Not Forget that I Have Forgotten, by Eluvium. I thought they complimented the landscape perfectly.

 

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On 5/1/2021 at 1:39 PM, Jibralta said:

It'll be nine years in July. As for marriage... we keep saying we will. But somehow we never do. It'll probably go the way of Toby Jones here, "Together 26, married 1..."

 

Jibralta!

Hey that is along time! I know everyone has a different attitude to settling down. Well, what you two are doing is working! How old are you can I ask? My God! I am nosey! 🥲

I always remember reading a post in your journal describing you coming home, tired, and Arnie being the cook he is rustling you up something and having a glass of wine! I totally got this image in my head about it and it gave me the chillest, cosiest vibes! 
 

If you were to get married, what type of wedding do you think you would want?
 

Lo x

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4 hours ago, mylolita said:

How old are you can I ask?

I am 44. He is a couple months older than me. We grew up in the same town, and have been acquaintances since we were 14 & 15. It's possible we've known each other since we were 5 & 6, however. Turns out we went to the same horseback riding camp--I do recall meeting a kid with his name back then!

4 hours ago, mylolita said:

I always remember reading a post in your journal describing you coming home, tired, and Arnie being the cook he is rustling you up something and having a glass of wine! I totally got this image in my head about it and it gave me the chillest, cosiest vibes!

Yes, he took on a lot of the domestic side of things back in 2016, when I was taking my licensing exams. What an enormous help that was! Since then, he's continued to manage the majority of the household tasks. It's very nice. And yes, we have a lovely, cozy home.

4 hours ago, mylolita said:

If you were to get married, what type of wedding do you think you would want?

I'm leaning towards an elopement, just him and me. But I think our respective families would not forgive us.

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On 5/2/2021 at 6:08 AM, catfeeder said:

Advice from Grandma, "The problem is not that snakes will cross your path, they will. The problem comes when you ignore danger and pick up the snake to play with it."

You see, this advice would never have deterred me because I've always loved snakes. I spend a huge part of my childhood hunting for snakes and lizards--quite difficult in the more northerly part of the US. I also relentlessly hunted for salamanders and various types of insects. Basically, I left no stone unturned. Literally. Haha.

I can't tell you how many times I've been bitten by snakes. Usually it's been harmless rat snakes or garter snakes, but once I was actually bitten by a rattlesnake. And yes, I was trying to hold it lol.

I was 17 at the time. It was canebrake rattlesnake. One long, needlelike fang went into my pointer finger, the other went into my thumb. So much blood came from those tiny little punctures! But the bleeding stopped quickly. I didn't bother going to the hospital--that's how much I didn't want to deal with my mom. Death first. Lol!

Fortunately for me, nothing happened. I wondered about that for a long time. The canebrake was one of two rattlesnakes that my friends were keeping as a pet. One snake had had its venom glands removed, but not the other. We didn't know which one was which, but I was willing to gamble that it was the one that bit me. Since then, I've learned that rattlesnakes sometimes bite without releasing venom. So, that's another possibility.

About 6 years ago, my boyfriend and I went on a hike and I saw a huge garter snake. Biggest snake I've ever seen in a natural New Jersey habitat. At least three feet long with like 1.25" in diameter.

It slithered across my path and BAM! I pounced. Pinned it to the ground with my sweatshirt sleeve and it whipped its head around and looked at me. I was just working out to figure out how to pick it up when Arnold unexpectedly yelled, "ARE YOU FCKING CRAZY?!?!" 

For a moment, I wondered if I might be executing a bad idea, and in that moment I let go 😞

The snake slithered away to freedom. Sigh.

I still think about it now and again. I wish I didn't let go. I spent so many years hunting for snakes, lizards, and salamanders in this stupid, cold state..... Finally, I hit payload and let go. Ugh.

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Jibralta! 
 

You are 44! Get outta here girl!!! You look about 25 in your pictures! Oh my lawd! What is your secret then?! 
 

An elopement sounds very romantic and I had as close as you could get to that whilst still having a “day” but if I did it again? Y’know, I probably would’ve done it exactly how you might! Well, you just never know 😉 I am waiting on an eNotalone wedding!!!

Lo x

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8 hours ago, mylolita said:

You look about 25 in your pictures!

Those pictures are from 12 years ago, so that makes sense!

8 hours ago, mylolita said:

An elopement sounds very romantic and I had as close as you could get to that whilst still having a “day” but if I did it again? Y’know, I probably would’ve done it exactly how you might!

What kind of wedding did you have? 

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On 5/4/2021 at 11:35 PM, Jibralta said:

Those pictures are from 12 years ago, so that makes sense!

What kind of wedding did you have? 

Well I am sure you just have that sought after "youthful glow!" 

And I got married at 24 after 3 years of being engaged, D was 33 at the time. We had hardly any money, we were renting a beautiful, historic but in need to tender care town house that had been converted into a flat, the two top floors we were on. D's business, although running at that time for 9 years, wasn't anything near where it was now. We knew a lot of glamorous and very wealthy people through his work selling art, fossils, minerals and antiques and most of them had become friends.

One of these ladies owned a house in London which was more actually a small mansion. She had been married to a top banker who had helped set up the banking firm he worked for in Hong Kong. They had been, in her own words, "awash with money". She had an affair, he divorced her and only left her the house and the funds to support her children who were in boarding school at the time. This meant she owned this majestic house with beautiful garden grounds, a chauffeurs house, a meadow and a stone flagged outdoor swimming pool but no money to barely keep it. One day we were staying over for a party (she used to have loads, we met some famous people there, her parties were always, a guarantee, interest!!!) and she just said suddenly, arms open and her wine spilling everywhere, "WHY DON'T YOU GET MARRIED HERE IN THE GARDEN!"

So, to cut along story short, I went to stay with her a month before our ceremony there in her grounds. For her letting us hold an event there, myself and about 8 other neighbours worked for 3 weeks straight during the summer getting her garden and pool back up to near their former glory! We hired a lovely linen marquee. In her garden, she had this stone building that looked like curved wooden seats under a thatched roof around a fire pit, but it's a huge glorified BBQ! So for food, we had a big BBQ! She had a beautiful butchers near her house in the town so we got gorgeous meat, had venison burgers, salad, chicken roasted on the pit and things it was awesome. Glamorous as it gets but as relaxed as can be.

I was wearing a £250 dress! D was in a secondhand navy suit! We had a friend who played cello and classical guitar to play music as I walked down our little make-shift aisle in the marquee. We only had 35 people there, mostly friends. Our only major expense was, we bought all the alcohol! And of course, everyone decided they would drink champagne all day until we ran dry! Everyone jumped into the pool when it got dark. I was nearly thrown in 😉 Our friend, who was D's best man at the time and worked for him as a photographer, photographed the wedding as a wedding present.

Only minor bums were this: we couldn't get a wedding license for her private home, so we did go sign legal marriage documents without anyone knowing a few months beforehand. No one knew about this and everyone presumed it was a legal ceremony at the house but technically it was just an exchanging of vows. But, we always see that day as our real day. My Uncle, who was a judge at the time, was the officiant at our wedding. It was all very personal, there wasn't a single person there who we didn't know, no staff, etc. 

Other minor bummer was, since that day 7 years ago, we have fell out with pretty much most of the people who were there who were friends! It's so sad, but everyone has just changed, gone different ways in life, think different things. So sometimes, as fantastic and casual and in the moment as our wedding photos are, I find them bittersweet, because most of the faces in them are no longer around.

I would totally recommend just having your day exactly how you want it!

Lo x

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Your wedding sounds like it was the best of both worlds!

7 hours ago, mylolita said:

So sometimes, as fantastic and casual and in the moment as our wedding photos are, I find them bittersweet, because most of the faces in them are no longer around.

I don't think that's terribly uncommon. For example, I saw some photos from either my or my sister's christening, and I didn't know most of the people in them. My parents didn't become social rejects or anything; people just drifted apart. Whether it was from differences in opinion or just the direction life took, the result was the same. It is kind of sad. But, it's part of life.

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11 hours ago, mylolita said:

Only minor bums were this: we couldn't get a wedding license for her private home, so we did go sign legal marriage documents without anyone knowing a few months beforehand. No one knew about this and everyone presumed it was a legal ceremony at the house but technically it was just an exchanging of vows. But, we always see that day as our real day. My Uncle, who was a judge at the time, was the officiant at our wedding. It was all very personal, there wasn't a single person there who we didn't know, no staff, etc. 

That sounds absolutely perfect, Lo ❤️.  

We eloped a couple of weeks beforehand, too, still had the, "big day," but mostly so other people could celebrate.  We celebrate our anniversary on the elopement date, though.  It was very romantic just being us.  I would never do it again differently ❤️.

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7 hours ago, maritalbliss86 said:

We eloped a couple of weeks beforehand, too, still had the, "big day," but mostly so other people could celebrate.

Two friends of mine did something like that. Actually, three friends--but they didn't marry each other lol.

The first two married each other. They married in private and then had a party at their house afterwards. I think they probably had a couple of parties because the party I went to was all friends, and they definitely have families.

The second one actually had to go back to Iran to get married. Before she went, she had an American-type wedding for all of her friends to attend. I ended up missing it, and for stupid reasons, which I still feel bad about eight years later. She wasn't upset, fortunately. She and her husband had a party at our mutual friend's house a couple weeks later, and I did attend that. 

I have a funny story about that last party. Actually, I have a couple funny stories about it (they're probably only funny to me lol). I have to think about it a little bit... One of them is about medicine that is available in different countries.

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I had a friend who secretly married her husband - legal not religious -a few months before the big day -she felt more comfortable then living with him.  She confessed to her parents shortly before the big day, plus the fact that her husband never had his Catholic marriage annulled (sorry not too familiar with all of this) - her parents were furious.  They still had the wedding reception and a priest did a renewal of the vows but from my memory somehow the wedding reception got scaled back.  It was not a good situation!  I believe they're still married -this was mid 90s.

We had a small wedding at my in-laws.  I didn't want to do the big party after.  We had our son less than 3 months after the wedding (planned!!) - and we had a big party for my in-laws 50th anniversary that summer.  I was not really into having a big reception.  But the first time we were engaged in the 90s we planned a big wedding.  I really disliked the planning process (maybe also because I was unhappy generally but seriously that whole industry stressed me out).  I'm thrilled with how we got married -what a magical and natural day!

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4 hours ago, Batya33 said:

I had a friend who secretly married her husband - legal not religious -a few months before the big day

I've definitely heard of this before. I might know someone who did it. I may have even been at the (dummy) wedding. I don't know what the circumstances were, though. Not sure if it was religious or what.

A guy that I was friends with as a teenager married his wife in a Walmart parking lot. Classy guy lol. Not long after, this same guy actually had two sons born two weeks apart 😂 😂 Different girls, of course. He told me all about it when he was towing my car one day.*

People still joke about how many girls that guy dated. Nobody understands how it was possible. He wasn't attractive by any stretch of the imagination, and he was never faithful, but girls loved him. Really, really pretty girls. I never understood it. I guess he had some kind of charm.

I have two friends who got married at something called Fright Fest at Six Flags. It was some kind of mass wedding. They did it because it was cheap (and I guess they probably liked Halloween). I think she was literally the only girl in a wedding dress, white or otherwise. She looked like a beautiful fairy princess. They've now been married for about 25 years. 

4 hours ago, Batya33 said:

that whole industry stressed me out

Ugh yeah. I don't like even thinking about it!

__________________________________

*That was one nice thing about being friends with him--if I locked my keys in the car (all the time!!), or needed a tow or a jump, it was free. 

 

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My boyfriend and I were just talking about the movie The Butterfly Effect with Ashton Kutcher. It's a great movie, but so hard to watch. Both of us have each seen it once, but it's very possible that neither of us will see it again.

Sometimes, I read about relationships on here, and I think about The Butterfly Effect. Sometimes it seems like it would be better for everyone on the planet if two particular people parted ways, or never got together in the first place..

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On 2/23/2021 at 1:00 AM, Jibralta said:

I'm really enjoying Clan of the Cave Bear. It's so interesting. And even though Jean M. Auel has a heavy narrative hand, it somehow avoids being dry or boring.

I finished Clan of the Cave Bear and the second book, The Valley of Horses. I am now reading the third book, The Mammoth Hunters. Very enjoyable storyline. And, I think Jean M. Auel's writing improves as well. 

I think one of the reasons why I like these books so much is that Ayla, the protagonist, faces down great adversity but manages to come out on top. She prevails through her skill and tenacity, but the stories also show how even seemingly bad events lead to a better overall outcome. I like that optimism. 

When I first read (and re-read!) the series, the last book out was The Plains of Passage. I gave up on the fifth book ever coming out. But a few years back, it finally did: The Shelters of Stone. I picked it up, but never read it. I did try. But it had been so long since I read the other four that I couldn't remember a lot. So, I put it back down until I got up the gumption to slog through the first four again.

I don't know how many years it's been since then, but I'm on a roll with these books. And really, it's not much of a slog. So, I expect to be reading The Shelters of Stone (finally!) in the near future. After that, there will be one more book, the final one. I am not sure what that's called. But I'm interested in seeing how all of this ends! 

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Wow!  That list is impressive!  I need to get back into reading, I feel like I read so slow and then all the interruptions make it so broken up that it's almost not worth it, but I think it is.  

Re-reading series is so nice, too... like visiting old friends again ❤️ 

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24 minutes ago, maritalbliss86 said:

Wow!  That list is impressive!  I need to get back into reading, I feel like I read so slow and then all the interruptions make it so broken up that it's almost not worth it, but I think it is.  

Re-reading series is so nice, too... like visiting old friends again ❤️ 

One major change I made this past year was to read even more.  I read daily already (for pleasure I mean my work requires work related reading too).  I did it for two reasons -to have less time on social media/screens (I only read actual books, no screens) and because I found that it gave me an outlet, gave me interesting things to talk about with my friends who also are avid readers.  My library has had curbside pickup for almost a year and now is open on a limited basis.  I joined a Facebook group for authors and readers too.  It's been great.  I've done mostly fiction, some literature, some fluffier depending, lots of historical fiction too.  What I do also to save my poor lower back is I read standing up - at the kitchen counter - in those times when there's something in the oven so instead of looking at my phone I read.  I don't mind the interruptions.  I also read early morning since I won't work out outside if it's before around 6:30 - I have my phone off in another room so I'm not tempted to check and I do some reading.  It's been great for fun, for my mental health, my brain, etc.  

Thanks for sharing Jibralta and enjoy!

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4 hours ago, maritalbliss86 said:

I feel like I read so slow and then all the interruptions make it so broken up that it's almost not worth it, but I think it is.

Oh, I've been reading at a glacial pace. I usually only read at the end of the night, and then I often read about two sentences and fall asleep with the book in my hand and the light on. lol. I usually end up losing my page, too.

It's still worth it, in my opinion. So, don't let that stop you!

4 hours ago, maritalbliss86 said:

Re-reading series is so nice, too... like visiting old friends again ❤️ 

It is. I enjoy re-reading things.

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  • 2 weeks later...
42 minutes ago, LaHermes said:

"A good sense of humor is one of the most desirable traits in a mate, especially in the early stages of dating. Women are particularly interested in a man with a sense of humor, or more specifically, someone that will make them laugh. Men on the other hand, want a date that will laugh at their jokes, not an easy task at all, as many humorless men find out the hard way. These different attributes of humor might have strong evolutionary roots, especially in light of sexual selection theory, as I discussed in an earlier post. Choosy women use humor as a sign of intelligence and weed out the less competent. Men use humor to impress women, and the funny ones succeed."

From an article on the topic  by Gil Greengross Ph.D.

 I love a good sense of humor. I think it's among the most important traits that a mate can have.

 

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I think that different writers have different kinds of mastery. I think Jean M. Auel's mastery is managing facts. She's also good at creating a storyline. In some ways, her storytelling is a little bit simplistic. But it's ok because its so packed with information that you almost welcome that simplicity.

I like Stephen King for different reasons. Stephen King builds complex, relatable characters, and his writing is rich with insight. When I finished IT, I actually felt a sense of loss. I had grown to know the characters so well that it was like we'd all been through this thing together, and now we were all saying goodbye.

I think that once I finish this Jean M. Auel series, I'm going to read The Stand. I think reading The Stand will bring a similar sense of immersion as IT did. I think Stephen King's ability to create such relatable characters is what makes the horror portion of his stories so potent. I don't even really like horror. But I like Stephen King. 

On a slightly unrelated note, two books stand out to me as "total package" masterpieces: Gone With the Wind, and To Kill a Mockingbird

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