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Jeff called. He wants all of us to move out of his house. He wants to rent to a family. Earl wants me to get an apartment in the same building where he lives. I do. My place is much larger than his and we spend most of our time together there.
Earl and I made love last night. It was unbelievable! This morning I feel awful. See, this is why I wouldn’t kiss him. Now I’ve spoiled it all. Earl was a virgin and he’s a preacher and I’ve ruined him! I set myself to not see him again.
Earl is here on his lunch break. He’s not upset or angry or pulling away. I don’t either. I’m still not sure where our relationship is going. But I like it so far.
It’s four A.M. the 26th of September and I’m crying in Earl’s arms. After work, four and a half hours ago, I went to Earl's apartment and told him I was going to "Gypsy's", my bar. An old boyfriend was there and "interested." I wasn't interested. I was angry that I had changed and glad at the same time. Now I’m here. I cry as I tell him I wish I hadn’t gone out but had stayed here with him. That’s when he proposes and I say yes.
I want to get married like, NOW, but Earl insists we wait a respectable time. He wants to get married on Christmas Day or New Years Day but I don't. We compromise and set the date for December 29th.
I call Ralph to tell him about our engagement he says, "I know." How does he know?
I’m going to Church with Earl some and decide to be baptized. I don't understand Christianity but if I’m going to be a preacher's wife I should be baptized. I continue to go out but soon realize I’m drinking cokes instead of beer.
Earl and I are moving into a larger apartment together–to save money. Yeh! We actually never stay in his apartment anyway.
Wedding gown shopping isn’t so nerve racking. I love the first one I try on. It fits my tall, thin frame perfectly. It lengthens my already long neck and is long enough, so I won’t need to have it altered. Earl wants me to look around. At the end of the day we’re buying that first gown.
It’s the same way about my ring. We start at Sam’s Club. I spot exactly what I want. It’s a one quarter carat diamond, yellow gold, anniversary band. And, it’s $199. Earl wants to "shop around." In the end we buy that ring.
We buy a bag of birdseed and some netting and I start making little pouches of bird seed to be thrown at our wedding. We put our wedding on the Church calendar. Invite Bobbi and Earl’s brother, Greg, to stand up for us. Ask Earl’s pastor, John Jones, to marry us. He hasn’t met me and so we get together and he approved somehow. I ask Ralph to give me away and he gets permission from his wife. I ask Demita to be my hostess at the reception. We have invitations printed and mail them out.
Ace Hardware store on Summer makes silk flower arrangements and does weddings. I ordered my bouquet of white roses and Baby’s Breath, a smaller bouquet for Bobbi, a corsage for Demitta, and boutonniere’s for Earl and Greg.
Our ceremony is just minutes away. Bobbi and I are dressed in our gowns and my veil is in place. Earl has completely set up the Church parlor for the reception single-handedly. Kari is carrying her bride Barbie that Bobbi brought her but doesn’t want to walk down the aisle with me.
I keep peeking into the sanctuary. "Is it time yet." Ralph tries to calm me. Suddenly, the music begins. Ralph sends Bobbi first, telling her to go slow. "Can I go now?" "Relax." The Wedding March begins. I take Ralph’s arm and he says, "OK. Go slow." Demita is half way up the aisle signaling me to SLOW DOWN.
The ceremony is fun. John reads 1 Corinthians 13, The Love Chapter. We take our vows, exchange rings, kiss and are presented., "Mr. And Mrs. Earl Dickerson." Thirteen minutes I barely remember. We leave the Church and are "showered" with birdseed. We take a ride and talk and laugh while the guests gather in the parlor. We return for a quiet reception.
Kari is home by five at Bill’s request. The parlor is clean when I get back. Earl, Bobbi and I go to dinner at Captain Bilbow's on the river. As we stand on the dock looking at the river it’s deja vu. I feel a sense of foreboding. "Is this real?" I’m not sure.
You certainly have had a variety of experiences in your life! Eventually I'm going to have to go back and start from the beginning to refresh my memory. My hardware store allegiances are divided between Tru Value and Orchard Supply. The first is only a mile from my house so they are my primary. Orchard is about four miles, but includes a spacious covered outdoor area with many plants, pots, and fountains so I visit occasionally.