extending the family

October 8, 2006
So today I'm heading out to a family wedding. S. and T. are keeping it a casual affair, because there are some tragic roots to them finding each other... S. was married to B. and they had 4 kids, including the baby twins, when suddenly on a vacation trip, B. gets a mysterious viral or bacterial infection and dies... from her feeling a bit unwell to no longer being with us was an amazingly short time, like 2 or 3 days, if that.

(I'm not sure why I'm being coy and using initials... a sudden surprsising concern for other folk's privacy I guess, I noticed I didn't use any names when I mentioned the tragedy after it had happened.)

So anyway, S. finds T., who has a daughter of her own, and they merge their lives, and T. takes on de facto mommyhood for the whole lot. Their invitation was touching:
"It is not our task to question the circumstances that have formed our lives, only to give thanks for the steps we have taken down the path that brought us together." S. and T., along with R., O., W., P. and B. invite you to share their joy as they are married and create a new family on: October 8, 2006, 11:30 AM
So, the folks are invited to dress casually or bring a change of clothes along with outdoorsy stuff like whiffle bats and bocce balls.

So, it should be a happy day, no matter how awful the prelude was.

Anecdote of the Moment
After the War was over, all Confederate soldiers were required to take an oath of allegiance to the Union before they were allowed to become U. S. citizens again.

One such story is that a number of men were before Union General Butler to take the oath of allegiance. One of them, a wag in his way, looked at the General, and with a peculiar Southern drawl, said: "We gave you hell at Chickamauga, General!"

The General was furious at the man's familiar impudence and threatened him with all sorts of punishment. Again came that drawling voice, repeating the first part of the statement, but he was stopped by the General, who ordered him to take the oath of allegiance to the United States at once or he would have him shot. After some hesitation, looking into General Butler's fierce eye, he reluctantly consented to take the oath. After taking the oath, he looked calmly into General Butler's face, and drew himself up as if proud to become a citizen of the United States and a member of the Yankee Army, and said: "General, I suppose I am a good Yankee and citizen of the United States now?" The General replied in a very fatherly tone, "I hope so." "Well, General," he replied, "the rebels did give us hell at Chickamauga, didn't they?"

(I googled for it after seeing it in Bartlett's Book of Anecdotes.)