Sunday, July 16, 2006

Thirty-three: Sunday Stories

It seems I wasn't the only one who felt a sort of compulsion to explain and expand upon A Life Well Lived. The more I looked at the list, the more I thought that each entry could provide considerable scope for story telling, musing and discussion. Well, why not? I plan to go through them one at a time, on Sundays, which should keep things going for a while.

Number 1: Bought everyone in the bar a drink.

I skipped right over this on the initial list, since I hardly ever go to bars, but in fact there was one time when I (technically we) did buy everyone in the bar a drink. Quite a lot of drinks. All the drinks actually, all night long.

On October 19, 1995 Rob and I were married on the flight deck of the HMCS Calgary. He was flying Sea Kings with the Canadian navy, and they were halfway through a six month peace-keeping operation starting in the Persian Gulf and finishing up in the Adriatic.

They had 10 days leave on Crete. The ship was docked in Suda Bay, a short way from the picturesque little city of Hania.

The ship's captain performed the ceremony, but since they weren't about to collect everyone to sail the hundred miles out to international waters, it was not legally binding. So earlier in the day, we were legally married by the mayor of Hania, in a civil ceremony at City Hall. Here we are filling out the paperwork with the Mayor's secretary. The gentleman on the far left is Raouf, a kind hearted Tunisian hairdresser who was working his way at odd jobs through Greece, and whom I met on the bus down from Iraklion. He spoke passable Greek and English, and gamely translated our vows for us.

After the shipboard ceremony, we retired to the wardroom for dinner:

And dancing:

We footed the bill for the open bar (Canadian ships are not dry), and although we retired early:

The party continued into the wee hours:

And that is how I once bought everyone at the bar a drink. Or two.