Friday, December 9, 2011

Unexpected Thrills

In 1983, while living in Provincetown, Mark and I drove out to Truro. Our friends Dennis and Madeline had a new baby, and we were going for our introduction to Morgan.

Because of the way life goes, the baby grew up. Four years ago she -- absolutely gorgeous and with honey-colored and tightly curled hair-- and a good looking young man named Chris fell in love. 

A week ago I got an email from Madeline. Was I still officially a member of the clergy? If so, was I available to marry two people in Provincetown on the 9th? Before I could respond to the email Morgan's dad, a co-worker, walked into headquarters where I work. He asked the same questions, and wondered if I would like to officiate at the marriage of his daughter and her boyfriend Chris. I said that I would love to do that but needed first to check at home to make sure I still had my official identification as a Minister of Universal Life Church. "Okay," he said, "because Morgan's going to be coming in here in about ten minutes to ask if you'll officiate at their wedding."

Shortly, in walks the beautiful and gorgeous young woman whom I had held in my arms a week or so after her birth; a young woman who's now just a dissertation away from a doctorate.  Her title of "Doctor" will have cost considerably more than the five dollars I paid back in the sixties to become a minister -- the five bucks that afforded me a cheap right to have the title "Reverend" put on my driver license (which I've always wanted to do but never remembered to do).  

My identification was just where I thought it would be.

Thus, at the far end of a railed pier that extends out from an upscale cocktail lounge in Provincetown, a pier that reaches out into Cape Cod Bay, I stood before the bride and groom with a crowd of about fifty guests behind them, and -- beneath a nearly full moon -- had the extremely high honor of intoning the lovely words Morgan and Chris had written for the ceremony.

Life, as it did tonight, occasionally presents an unexpected thrill.

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