December 31st, 1991

December 31st, 1991

Benalmadena, Spain

Mum was mightily surprised this afternoon, when she opened the door to find me standing there.

“Happy Anniversary!” I exclaimed, attempting not to drop the bag of Duty Free goodies, as Mum lunged at me for a hug.

“Tom! Tom!” She yelled. “C’mere!”

Dad was out on the balcony, his face turned to the sun.

“He can’t hear you, Mum, the door’s shut.”

“Och, yer a wee rascal,” she chuckled. “You should have told us you were coming.”

“Then it wouldn’t be a surprise,” I said, removing the bottles of Champagne and chocolates I bought at the airport.

“Ooohh,” Mum cooed, pointing to the cabinet behind me. “Glasses are in there. Did you just arrive?”

“Uh-huh, the flight got in at half two.”

“Did you get the train?”

I nodded. “So easy isn’t it, and really inexpensive. Plus, you know me, I like to people watch.”

Mum squeezed me tightly. “Dad will be so happy to see you!”

“Looks like you’ve been enjoying the sun,” I said, just as the Champagne cork popped, making Mum jump. “Gets me every time,” she laughed as I filled the glasses, the bubbles fizzing away.

“The sound of celebration,” I said, keeping an eye on Dad as we crept in his direction.

Slowly, Mum opened the door and stepped outside as I remained out of view.

“Och, Champagne, now that’s fancy,” Dad said.

“Aye well, it’s no every day you celebrate twenty-five years of marriage,” Mum uttered, as I peered out to see her leaning in for a peck, before handing the glass to Dad.

“Where’s yours, Liz?”

“Right here,” I said, stepping into view.

A look of what I can only describe as astonishment flashed across Dad’s face. “Ya wee rascal,” he said, shooting up, wrapping me in a hug.

“That’s what Mum said!”

“You’re meant to be in New York.”

I shook my head. “Sorry, that was a white lie.”

We raised our glasses and clinked them together.

“Happy Anniversary to my lovely Mum and Dad, and here’s to many more!”

“Thank you, hen,” Dad smiled. “What a brilliant surprise.”

“Certainly is,” Mum said. “Oh, and Happy Hogmanay.”

“That’s right,” I said, looking at my watch. “Only eight hours of nineteen ninety-one remain!”

“Here’s to my two favourite lassies,” Dad said. “Here’s to us.”

“Here’s to us,” Mum and I echoed with another clink.

 

December 10th, 1991

December 10th, 1991

At home, England

Mum is fond of telling me I’m still young enough to make mistakes without having to worry too much about the consequences. So, with that in mind, I returned to Massachusetts and spent a fantastic week with William, enough so that I came home with my engagement ring planted firmly on my finger and my head filled with preliminary plans for our wedding next year!

As if that isn’t enough, I decided to rent out my house and promptly found a young, newly married couple who already moved in! Consequently, all of my furniture (etc.!) is now at mum and dad’s, including my beloved striped couch from Habitat that I saved long and hard for. It’s presently taking up most of the space in the hallway but (much to dad’s dismay) it’s great for lounging on during long phone conversations. Mum suggested I sell it and laughed when I told her I’m not ready for that level of commitment quite yet!

Between work trips I plan on commuting to Boston to spend as much time as possible with William and when he goes out to sea, I’ll be here, back in my old room but that will all change after we get married.

Without knowing the expiration date on this age versus mistakes thing, I plan on going full throttle to create the kind of life I truly want, in the hopes it’ll at work out!