The Blind Date – Her Side

Today, Tim and I celebrate our 30th Wedding Anniversary.

Tim and Mary Livingston Wedding

Our favorite wedding photo. A quiet moment, just us two.

I am not surprised we made 30 years. However, it does surprise me that we made it past the first date, and the second…this is my side of the story. If you want his side, he’ll tell you over on his blog today The Blind Date – His Side. Interesting how we each recall these events. 😉

This is what I looked like when we met.

This is what I looked like when we met.

This is what Tim looked like when we met.

This is what Tim looked like when we met.

September 1980
Kelly, a coworker came into the camera store and asked how I felt about blind dates.

“I don’t.” My response was simple. It was only a week after I started the job. I worked with this person for a total of thirteen hours. Not long enough to trust her judgment to set me up on a date.

“But, they’ll be here when we close in fifteen minutes,” Kelly protested my refusal.

They? What?

I didn’t really hear too much at that point, something about a guy named Greg and his friend, Tim. In fifteen minutes? Good grief!

Then they walked in. Early. Great. I was really annoyed and made my way over to the counter. I planned to politely apologize for my presumptuous coworker.

Tim was friendly, nice and funny. He was roped into this as well, something about Greg and begging. We laughed and decided to bail Greg out by being escorts for the date.

We saw a Charles Bronson movie, Borderline  – enough said. Not a stellar start, we said our goodbyes and that was that.

A few weeks later, Tim showed up at my work and invited me to an Air Supply concert. Somehow, Kelly managed to rope some poor soul into going along. I thought she was his friend, he thought she was my friend. So it was, the four of us, as well as about couple dozen or so of his other friends. Nice intimate evening.

Then he asked me out again, but I was busy that night, told him I was going out with someone else. He thought I meant “going out” as regular dating boyfriend, I didn’t correct him and left it at that.

A few months passed and Terry, another coworker, was continually inviting me to join him and his friends on Saturday nights. I kept making excuses. I really didn’t have time for it, and I am not a crowd or party person.

Then one afternoon, I relented and accepted Terry’s invitation. He told me the party started at 9 pm on South Cow Creek Rd. I arrived on time. The road was more of a dirt path with large cobbles and potholes. I carefully wound my way in, swearing under my breath the whole way. My 1965 Triumph Spitfire had all of 4” of clearance and this road needed a 4×4. To top it off, some guy was right behind me with lights shining in my mirrors.

I arrived at the house and Terry was not there. Nobody knew me. All the gals looked at me like I was some kind of party crasher – cliquey things. Then someone said, “Hi, Mary.” It was the blind date guy, Tim and his brother, Pete. I didn’t know anyone else, so Tim and I talked while I waited for Terry to show up. The cliquey girls didn’t like us talking so much and they really hated it when we danced.

About the time the guys cleared the furniture and were wrestling in the living room. Terry finally showed up. Well over two hours late. Terry thought he would be cute and challenge me to “wrestle.”

Bad plan. I was peeved. He had no clue. He was flirting. I was not. His ‘plan’ was to let me win. Bad plan, in no time he had to fight back, I made sure of it. Then I mopped the floor with him. I wasn’t playing. He got the message.

Then the harassing began, even without the beer the guys would have teased him to no end about being beat by a girl. They were merciless. “You wrestle her,” Terry answered back.

“No way,” they said. Then one voice broke through the crowd, “I will.”

It was Tim, the blind date guy. I did not know he was a competitive wrestler. Crap, I was just a scrappy girl with no training who stood a fair chance to kick the butt of the average guy out of sheer determination an orneriness. With Tim, I was clearly in over my head. I gave it a good go. He did not embarrass me too badly, but he easily kicked my butt.

He showed up on time, was fun to talk to, great smile, quite the flirt, he could and would hold his own with a strong woman. Now this was someone I wanted to know better.

This was a few months after the infamous wrestling match...we were still smiling.

This was a few months after the scandalous wrestling match…we were still smiling.

We became best friends. Two years and nine months after the blind date, we married. Thirty years of wedded bliss.

Not a day passes when I don’t count my blessings.

Tim is at the top of the list. I can’t even begin to express the wonder of being married to my best friend. He holds my heart.

Happy Anniversary Tim, I love you – Mary

Rematch?

Spying on the Vulture Nest

I am uncertain as to how well this will work. Today Tim and I set up a camera to watch the turkey vulture nest. Since they have already returned to the nest, we set it up at a distance. Hopefully, we can catch them coming and going at the entrance.

The nesting spot is located deep in the cavity of a hollow tree. We measured last summer and it is 14 feet down. We have no way to set up a camera inside of the nest cavity short of drilling a hole in the tree trunk.

After some time, I may mount a camera on a pole and raise it to the top of the nest to attempt to sneak a few shots of the inside; but for now, we will keep it at a non-disturbing distance. So far, no images to share from the nest cam itself…I will keep you posted.

Tim and I head out to set up the vulture cam.

Tim and I head out to set up the vulture cam.

We figured we were close enough.

We figured we were close enough. Photos by my niece, Paige Donahue.

Just a few tweaks to the camera angle.

Just a few tweaks to the camera angle. Photos by my niece, Paige Donahue

A few final tweaks to secure the camera.

A few final tweaks to secure the camera. Thanks Paige for taking the pictures!

 

Thought you might like Tim’s side of our morning photo shoot. His inclusion of a “backside” might deserve its own post response.

THE FORESTER ARTIST

Ever wonder what is going on behind the scenes with other blogs?  This is a little snippet in the life of The Backdoor Artist.  If you are a follower of my blog, you probably already know that I am married to The Backdoor Artist, Mary Livingston.

Mary has a front row seat to our backyard with a large window facing out from her work space.  It is a wonderful view.  A view which often provides for visual treats.  Yesterday she spotted a large buck across the pond.  She posted this adventure complete with beautiful pictures here at, http://thebackdoorartist.com/2012/12/11/animal-attraction/.

Spotting this big old buck prompted frantic camera grabbing and stealthful sneaking out into the yard to photograph the buck.  When he didn’t run away, we plotted to stalk our subject for more and better shots.  More frantic activity ensued with changing of clothes and getting shoes on.  We came…

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Wedded Bliss

I just stared at the wall. Painting upon painting. His wall was covered with art.

Some of the art on Tim’s wall 31 years ago. Check out his blog if you would like to see what he is up to today. Tim Livingston – The Forester Artist

I didn’t know this about him, that he was an artist. Apparently, I was the only one who didn’t know. Unlike me while in college, his artistic works were in the open, out there on display for friends and family to see.

About ten months earlier, we met on a blind date. (Don’t ask.) We had mutual friends and at some point, after this botched introduction and continually running into each other, we started dating.

I was already in danger of loosing my heart. The moment I saw he was an artist tipped me over the top.

Six months ago, over 31 years after seeing his wall of art, I picked up brushes and started to learn watercolor. No one was happier for me than Tim that I was learning to paint. Being married to my best friend is one of the greatest blessings in life. The fact that we also share many of the same passions is life’s icing.

You may wonder why it took me so long to pick up brushes. Oh, I toyed with it a few times, but I knew inevitably, people would compare us.

Our relationship is not about comparing.

Sitting in a blind one morning. Our version of dressing up for a date.

Well, we are comparing our WordPress blog world maps. Oh, then the time we took martial arts together and competed for trophies. And he did get the first buck this season. Mine was bigger. I found the biggest nugget on our claim. Although he holds the record for the biggest agate. However, my geode is near the size of a basketball. We both found nice septarian nodules…nonetheless, you get my point.

Asking a spouse or loved one to critique your work is risky. Tim says that asking him to critique my work is like asking him if my butt looks big or if my clothes make me look fat. There is no right answer.

So I joined an online illustrating course, Make Your Splashes – Make Your Marks!, where I am able to learn, hone my skills and participate in critiques.

As for Tim, here are his most expert responses to my most ridiculous question:

Us with a few of our golden retrievers on vacation at Roaring Camp. It’s a great place to learn about gold mining.

Her: Does this make me look fat?
Him: I don’t think it does your body justice.
or
Him: I don’t think you would like the way it looks.

Yep, wedded bliss.

Happy Birthday Tim –
Love,
Mary