The fall day had dawned gray when we jumped in the car and drove west from Syracuse.
I wore my new suit pants but carefully arranged the jacket on a hanger in the back. She changed into her beautiful dress in the bathroom of a Kentucky Fried Chicken down the block from City Hall, earning gasps and claps from lunchtime patrons upon her emergence back into the lobby.
The city clerk heard our vows. His assistant not only was our witness, but our photographer, too. It was very romantic.
The best day of my life was when we eloped to Niagara Falls, N.Y., and the beloved woman in my life became my dear wife Karen.
We sat in the car out front afterward and called our kids on our cell phones with the news. Daryl and Elisabeth both responded with happiness and a bit of “what-took-you-so-long.”
We drove across the border for a one-night honeymoon on the Canadian side. The Falls are much more beautiful from their view, and so is their city. I promised Karen while pulling up that I’d be cool to the guard, but immediately blurted to his “why are …” question, “We just got married!” He smiled, handed me our passports, and waved us through.
We walked the town, admired a Wonder of the World, ate dinner at a quaint local restaurant by the name of The Love Boat — yes, that was a find that made me grin — and appreciated a fine DoubleTree resort hotel.
This was The Best Day of My Life, beating out a whole bunch of Great Days in My Life.