For those of you who have never seen Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, there is a legend that whoever is captain of the Flying Dutchman must spend an eternity at sea, ferrying the souls of those who have died at sea to the other side. In order to do this, he apparently must have his heart cut from his chest and placed in a 'chest' (the treasure kind), to be kept by his one true love... who he gets to visit on land once every 10 years... kind of romantic… in a macabre sort of way.
Coincidentally, Cherith and I are celebrating our tenth wedding anniversary today. And, like Calypso and Elizabeth Swan, Cherith has been in sole possession of my heart for these 10 years (I assure you, however, that even though I did have my chest ripped open at one point, my literal heart is still ticking away in my chest - not my treasure chest, but my regular chest… you know… my torso). And while I’m not exactly the captain of a mysterious ship, sailing the seven seas and ferrying lost souls, I am the proud husband and father of a most spectacular 'crew', who I occasionally will ferry to the store, a park, restaurants, etc. in my own vessel of sorts… the Flying Honda Odyssey. Furthermore, unlike Davie Jones, I do not have a ‘locker’ (well, I did in high school, but it was hardly a source of mortal terror for anyone - that is, of course, assuming I didn't leave my egg salad sandwich over Christmas break) and instead of having a kraken to unleash on my foes as a pet, I have a four-legged, ill-behaved, half-wit-half-breed canine we call Phantom (who I’m not terribly happy with at the moment considering what happened on his walk the other night, but that's another story). And while Davie Jones prefers to play tragic and frightening compositions on his organ, I prefer to play decidedly less-frightening compositions on my electric piano. And finally, while Davie Jones apparently keeps his keys tucked away under his tentacle-chin, I prefer the much more practical storage of my coat pocket. I can continue, of course, but I sense the groans and eye-rolling this writing is almost certain to illicit, and so for now, I will now keep the Pirates references at bay…(he-he)
Anyhow, if you were to scroll down, you will see some fairly shocking 'before and after' images of myself: please excuse the gynormous bottle-bottom glasses and the fuzzy brown caterpillar perched on my upper lip (which finally died about a year after those photos were taken). And, if you look closely, you can very truthfully say that I am less of a man now than when I first got married...about 40 pounds less..which is just fine with me. But putting all joking aside for one moment, I do want to say that I am so genuinely thankful that I am one of those fortunate enough to be a part of something truly special. Ten years ago, I never could have imagined the adventures Cherith and I would have together, and while certain obstacles were trying and even rather frightening, we have managed to weather various storms and emerge stronger and closer because of them. Happy Anniversary, honey.