Later this week my wife ("Megan*") and I will be celebrating our seventeenth wedding anniversary. SEVENTEEN. Adding to that....we have known each other and have been more-or-less joined at the hip for the last twenty. She and I have been through more together than I ever imagined, and I don't see an end to it either. Good times and bad. Sickness and in health. For richer and (almost forever) poorer. Til death do us part.
|Did somebody say "celebrate?"|
In honor of our anniversary, I thought I'd share the story of the first time I ever saw my "better half." It was one of those days in my life I will never forget, and it always makes me smile.
For as much as I rag on this blog about how much Walmart sucks the big one, it does hold a special place in my heart because that was where I first saw and met Megan. We were both college sophomores (at different colleges), and while Megan had been there for awhile - I had just started working there as a cashier. After a few weeks of schlubbing a front register and dealing with the "back-to-school" crowds, in their infinite wisdom the managers decided that I belonged back in the Sporting Goods and Automotive Department. If someone would have told me then that I would spend the next six years jockeying a Sporting Goods counter, I would have said you were silly.
And then one Saturday not long into my Sporting Goods days - it happened.
The Toy Department was having a big clearance of all their summer toys (pools/squirt guns/floaties), and they had a big area set up in the aisle between Toys and Lawn and Garden. From my vantage point in Sporting Goods, I could see clear down the aisle through Toys to the Garden Center doors where people were milling about and a few Walmart Associates were keeping a mindful eye. Every so often, one of the employees standing there would get on the overhead PA, and announce to the store the clearance toy sale back by Lawn and Garden and Toys. One time in particular a woman's voice came over the speakers saying something like:
"Attention Walmart Shoppers! Please check out the clearance sale going on right now in the Toy department where we have lots of summer toys marked down 50%. The sale is going on in Toys right next to the Garden Center doors."
I looked down towards the Garden Center, and I saw the girl talking on the PA.....she had long straight brown hair, glasses, and was dressed very nice - especially for a Walmart employee. I saw her face and immediately thought "Wow. That is a good-looking chick." I was awe-struck by what I was seeing, and immediately asked my co-worker "Bill*" - "Who is the chick with the brown hair standing down by the Lawn and Garden doors?"
He said "Her? Oh That's Megan."
I tried to play it cool, like "Oh. Cool." But inside I was like "Holy GD MF Jesus!" This girl made my jaw DROP. I'd seen pretty girls before, but this one made my heart jump. I'm serious.
My first instinct was to go talk to her, but as I was never overly confident with the ladies - I felt like she would think I was a total dope. I had the immediate opinion that she was probably out of my league, and I stood no chance of any kind. Looking back now, I obviously under-estimated my chances.
Oddly - I don't remember the actual moment we first talked to each other - it was probably while helping clean up and "zone" the store after it closed - but I will forever remember seeing her for that first time. It didn't take long after that for us to start hanging out together, partying with the other college-aged Walmart gang, and then eventually just spending time alone together.
The rest I guess is history, and I wouldn't change any of it. Well...except for the "poorer" part, but I don't think there has been much we could have done to avoid that.
Happy 17th Anniversary. Thank you for marrying me and making my life better than I could ever have imagined. I love you very much.
(*) - Names changed to protect the guilty/innocent