We walked back to the White Plains train station, and passed by another old haunt of mine, the White Plains Sears store. I worked another couple of high school summers as a busboy and dishwasher there (I started out on the grill, but my perfuse persperation over the grill tended to create an unappetizing atmosphere….they tried me in the ice cream section, unfortunately, that did not stem the salty effluent, and so I was relegated to the hinterlands). As one of the few cafeteria employees with a reasonable level of spelling skills, one of my assignments was posting the “daily special” on the menu board. That activity was curtailed when I thought it would be amusing to post “Corned Beef and Garbage” on the board. I was correct that cafeteria customers were highly amused, however, I did misjudge my boss’ potential enjoyment.
Our next destination was another one of historic importance to us, “Camp” (or, the Holmes Presbyterian Camp and Conference Center) where Deb and I met as camp staffers some 40 years ago. Camp was another 50 miles north of White Plains, and the perfect distance to finish our first day of driving. We always talked about being married at Camp, and even that morning as we were leaving our sister and brother-in-law’s house, Deb was telling Wendy how we would have liked to have been married there.
We arrived at Camp and drove into the office lot where some old friends were gathered. Paul, my successor as the camp maintenance guy, Fred a fellow camp staffer from our time who lives in the area (Fred sang at our wedding with his two brothers, Dave and Peter), and some current camp friends.
Deb and I took a drive through Camp to the spot where we had our first date on Denton Lake. The picture below shows Deb and me next to the lake.
Unbeknownst to Deb, I had a few things planned for this evening, and the casual gathering of our friends was not quite the “happenstance” that it seemed. I proposed again to Deb at Denton, asking her, in spite of living with someone who think it would be great to drive a car that gets plugged in every 60 miles, to marry me again. And wouldn’t it be great to be married at the place where we always imagined? She didn’t quite get it yet, but as I began explaining that our friends appearance was more than a coincidence, and that the camp director, Peter, is a minister, that everything was arranged for a ceremony.
I was a little worried at Deb’s stunned look, but that subsided and she said, “Yes”. We went back to the main building to announce that Deb had said yes for a second time….she had her chance….and that we would have the ceremony after dinner.
Those of you who know me, know that detailed planning is not a characteristic one associates with me, which is why EVing our way to Illinois should be something Las Vegas can make some money on. But I did plan this event over the past two months, and our Camp friends make this a wonderful time for us. I even had a ring. Our fellow camp staffers David and Linda (also a camp romance) attended; along with Peter and Susan; Fred, Cathy and daughter Elizabeth; and Paul and Brenda (another camp romance). Peter and David performed a wonderful ceremony, Deb and I cried like babies, and Fred, as he did nearly 40 years ago, brought his guitar and sang at our wedding.
Paul and David “broke in” to the summer home of another fellow camp staffer that is adjacent to the camp, and took a bottle of champagne from his refrigerator for us to celebrate. Great friends, lots of memories and beautiful weather….nothing more needed for a perfect evening.
Now, before those of you on the female side of things start thinking how sweet and romantic I am…..and before those of you on the male side of things start thinking about what a jerk I am (and yes, that’s probably a fair assessment, but not necessarily for this); you should know that it was only two years ago when I completely forgot Deb’s birthday (which happens to fall on the birthday of one of our daughters, whose birthday I didn’t forget), and then a mere month later, I completely forgot our wedding anniversary. I am still amazed that I am here and lived to tell about it. But as you should have surmised from this story, Deb is a very forgiving person.
This has little relevance to EVing, so we’ll get back to that tomorrow. We put the Sun Catcher to bed with a 120 volt plug-in provided by Paul and looked forward to the next leg of our journey.