A little history


As I mentioned in my last post, the back story has something to do with the “why”.

I was born in Los Angles area and when I was 7, my parents moved here to Seattle.  I graduated from high school in 1964, then went 2 years at junoir college (that was the term in the old days) and then 2 years to commercial art school.  Just as I finished art school and before I went to work for Boeing as a tech illustrator, my aunt in San Francisco invited me down for a 2 week holiday.  I met a young man and stayed three weeks.  He was a foreign student, an Armenian, born and brought up in Jerusalem when it was Palestine, carried a Jordanian passport with a student visa.  He had been in the U.S. for 8 years working and going to school – after 8 years and a Masters, he had had enough of school.  Unfortunately in those days, when one stopped being a student, one had to leave.

He didn’t want to go back home because there were no opportunities for a Christian there, but it was too expensive for England and not enough time for a visa to Canada.  He was able to obtain a good conduct certificate from Amman, Jordan through a cousin and was set to leave for Australia.  I met him 5 months before he left and while I was in San Francisco, we dated a lot.  He later came to visit Seattle and just before he left, I went down to “visit my aunt” again.  We had written back and forth after I left the first time – he was so different from anyone I had ever met.  he could have stayed another quarter in school, then we could have been married here – he didn’t want me to think he was marrying just to stay here.

He must have been very sure I was going to say yes because he bought my rings before he left but didn’t ask me to marry him until he had been in Australia for a month or so.  He said we would be unofficially engaged and in December officially engaged.  But it would be the following December before we would be married; a very long time to wait.

He sent my rings to my Dad with instructions to give them to me on Christmas – it wasn’t until 1 minute after midnight that I saw my engagement ring.  Even so, he didn’t show me the wedding ring until he had received instructions.   It was a lovely emerald cut, not huge but I loved seeing the rainbow colors from the sunshine.

It turned out he couldn’t wait until the following December, so we planned to marry at term break.  That meant I had some things to do before leaving – a passport, smallpox shot, polio oral vaccine, etc.  The other item was a bit of a puzzler – I had to prove I was a spinster.  I had plenty of time to think because that January it snowed over 3 feet, very unusual here.

When it was finally clear enough to drive, my Dad drove me  to the County/City building in downtown Seattle. When we walked in, I’m sure the guy behind the counter of the Marriage License Bureau thought “He’s old enough to be her father”.   Then when I explained what I needed and asked if he had any suggestions.  He said he would write a letter on their letterhead that they had never issued a marriage license for me in King County – that left 38 other counties and 49 other states.  Then I asked my minister to write a letter for me to say he had never married me to anyone.

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