That Face / Esa Cara

La versión español está después de la versión inglés.

I CAN’T BELIEVE that, today, San Geraldo and I celebrate 38 years together. We hosted a huge party for our 1st anniversary. At that time, one year seemed like forever. Ditto the 10th anniversary. But 38 years? Last night, we had a quiet and love-filled dinner with our pal Luke; his great-aunt Flan; and his parents, Kathleen (still pregnant) and Pedro. How lucky can you get?

I can still simply look in San Geraldo’s direction and I’m overwhelmed with love. Whether he’s wearing a dish towel to escape the flies and mosquitoes, feeling the kick of Kathleen’s baby belly for the first time, fanning himself, being photo-bombed, laughing with family and friends, or just sitting there… as the song says: “What view completes my universe, transcending time and space? That face. That face. That face.” And the tongue part of the face!

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NO PUEDO CREER que hoy San Geraldo y yo celebremos 38 años juntos. Organizamos una gran fiesta para nuestro primer aniversario. En ese momento, un año parecía una eternidad. Lo mismo para el décimo aniversario. ¿Pero 38 años? Anoche, tuvimos una cena tranquila y llena de amor con nuestro amiguito Luke; su tía abuela Flan; y sus padres, Kathleen (aún embarazada) y Pedro. ¿Qué tan afortunado puedes ser?

Todavía puedo mirar en dirección a San Geraldo y estoy abrumado por el amor. Ya sea que esté usando un paño de cocina para escapar de las moscas y los mosquitos, sintiendo la patada del vientre del bebé de Kathleen por primera vez, abanicándose, siendo bombardeado, riéndose con familia y amigos, o simplemente sentado allí … como dice la canción: “¿Qué vista completa mi universo, trascendiendo el tiempo y el espacio? Esa cara. Esa cara. Esa cara.” Y la “parte lengua” de la cara.

May 1982. After nine months.
Mayo 1982. Después de nueve meses.

A Couple Of Feet

So, the 36th anniversary of the death of Big Sister Dale has passed. San Geraldo honored her by buying a box of “galletas de rellena de naranja” (soft biscuits filled with orange jam and covered in chocolate). Dale introduced me to these in 1970. She usually bought Pim’s brand, but this Spanish version brought back the sweet memories just the same.

WE FINISHED THEM OFF IN ONE SITTING… JUST AS DALE WOULD HAVE DONE.
1954: LOOK AT MY EYES! MY REACTION TO THOSE CUSTOM FABRICS, PERHAPS?
OR MAYBE JUST MY SHOCK AT MISPLACING MY FEET.

Speaking of misplaced feet: Once Dale hit her teens, she began to train me in some basic social skills. For about a week before any party — wedding, bar mitzvah, school event — she’d drag me into her room every night, turn on her record player, and [try to] teach me to dance. The results weren’t exceptional but the lessons were a joy.

Dale taught me dancing in a hurry…

Grandpa Sam’s Pants

My maternal grandfather was, I’m told, quite dashing in his youth. Tall, blond, with smokey gray eyes. It was said he dressed well, too.

I was scanning old photos and came across two from my grandparents’ 66th wedding anniversary party in 1982.

For the event, which my mother hosted, I flew down from Boston and sculpted chopped liver into the number “66.” At the time, I thought it was hideous and somewhat obscene. After seeing the photo, I haven’t changed my opinion. (Click the images for full servings.)

The other photo from that day is of my grandparents. My grandfather died just after their next anniversary, at the age of 93 (more or less). And my grandmother followed exactly a year later.

I have no idea who did my grandfather’s shopping, but his anniversary outfit looks like something out of … well, out of the pages of this blog.

He did, however, make the peak lapel look so swell…

[Zachary] Quinto Anniversary

Tuesday marked our five-year anniversary in Spain. Fifth is “Quinto” in Spanish. Our “quinto anniversario.” So, my apologies, Zachary Quinto really has nothing to do with it.

As for me, I’d prefer five years in Spain (or anywhere) with San Geraldo. When you’ve got San Geraldo, who needs Zachary Quinto? (No offense, Zach.)

We went out Tuesday night to our favorite place in Fuengirola, Meson Salvador, and had a celebratory dinner with our friends Tynan and Elena — two more reasons to be grateful for our lives in Spain.

Tuesday afternoon, I went for a long walk in the 39C (102F) heat. I’d tell you there was not a cloud in the sky on our anniversary, only that would be a lie.

There was A CLOUD in the sky. Exactly one. But it wasn’t around for long.


(Click for bigger pictures… except for Zachary Quinto.)

LOOKING EAST TOWARD HOME AT THAT CLOUD IN THE SKY.
THE PORT OF FUENGIROLA.
THE CLOUD BECOMING A MEMORY.
WEDNESDAY MORNING COFFEE ON THE BEACH WITH SAN GERALDO.
YEAR SIX, DAY ONE. 

We’re Gonna Get Through It Together

Thirty-four years ago today, I met San Geraldo. At that time, I didn’t know he was a saint. Nor did I know he was descended from an actual saint (King Ferdinand III), and from a multitude of kings and queens (Eleanor of Aquitaine, for one).

To tell the truth, especially in our first months together, if anyone had told me “Jerry” was I saint, I would have laughed. Well, OK, if anyone now misses my sense of irony in these saintly references, I still laugh. However, I did immediately know somehow that whatever his flaws (and there are so few), he would be worth every minute we would spend together. If you haven’t been keeping up, click here for our history.

HALFWAY THERE (HERE?).
SEVENTEEN YEARS AGO IN BERGEN NORWAY.

We’re supposed to be at Sandpiper’s Restaurant in Fuengirola tonight celebrating our 34th anniversary in the company of our wonderful friends. But, since the Dowager Duchess had other ideas (not within her control) about where we should be for the summer, we’re spending a quiet evening in her apartment (while she continues to make strides at Rehab). San Geraldo will cook dinner (pesto chicken and pasta) and I will gladly clean up the mess he makes in the kitchen.

I’m hoping to get back to reading and writing more regularly. Meanwhile, all my attention tonight will be focused on San Geraldo… with gratitude for these 34 years of love and adventure (and punchlines).

We’ll muddle through whatever we do…