On March 19, 1999, Gary and I went to the Sonoma County Courthouse and got married by a Justice of the Peace.
We’d been together 8 years already. Neither of us particularly wanted to go through the legal process. But, we went ahead and did it for practical purposes — health insurance being one of the main reasons.
Up at the county office, we found out we needed a witness. We hadn’t thought of bringing anyone with us. Luckily a kind, older woman named Nuala, who was waiting for a friend, said she’d “stand” for us.
The ceremony was simple and quick. We promised to be kind to each other. So far so good.
We then drove to the beach, stopped for a beer, went out to dinner back in Petaluma and then went home and watched a movie. Plus ça change …
We threw a party for friends the following day — a reception of sorts. We gave everyone an egg-shaped stone — a symbol of new beginnings on the Spring Equinox.
It was Mardi Gras, February 12, 1991. We’d gone on a “date” to Stanroy’s Music in Santa Rosa. We then wended our way back to my pad, an old farmhouse in Penngrove, California. The house was on what had once been a chicken ranch during Sonoma County’s egg production heydays in the 1920s. The living room had high ceilings, windows that faced the horse pasture in the front, oak trees on the side. The fireplace was smokey because of a poorly functioning insert. The couch was rust colored and modular — a hand me down from my oldest sister.
We had started hanging out after the Winter Solstice, talking, watching movies together, taking drives, more talking. We were falling in love but, having both had been married before, we were taking it slow, very slow.
This night, 27 years ago, after more talking and pots and pots of herbal tea, I saw bands of light reaching out from our hearts pouring into each other. We kissed and …
People gathered at Place des Arts in downtown Montreal on this brisk Saturday midday, in solidarity with worldwide demonstrations for the rights of women and equality for all.
I wanted to add my body and pink pussy hat to the event so I hopped on the metro and made the short 25 minute trip. I captured these few shots of the participants.
In Canada, equality between women and men is enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights, unlike the US, which has yet to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. Canada is not perfect — the pay gap is still wide and women are under-represented in politics,for example — but the the government is committed to creating gender equality.
It is hard to believe that in the 21st century, those of us with a vagina are still fighting for basic human rights.
Around we go again. Here’s hoping that 2018 moves us forwards as a species — more compassion, more critical thinking, more action, less talk, less religion. A gal can dream.
Gary and I send out a New Year’s greeting to family and friends every year with a light-hearted selfie. When putting together this year’s greeting, I got to wondering how many times have we have done that. Looks like, we’ve been at it for 17 years – 2002-2018. Oh my. So, for fun I put together a super short video to share those seventeen seasonal selfies. (Who says to avoid alliteration?)
In Quebec, one can use the word selfie — everyone knows what that is — but the “official” word is un égoportrait.
Gary and I gathered with 2,000+ others today at L’Esplanade de la Place des Arts, Montréal to support the worldwide Women’s March. It was a “moderate” winter’s day here in Quebec at 1° celsius. The crowd’s was energized.
The battle for women’s rights continues. It is unbelievable and maddening that even now in the 21st century we are still fighting for basic human rights. Today’s amazing display by millions of people everywhere was encouraging. It tells me we are all so not interested in going backwards.
Onward, Pussy Cats!
Washington D.C. over 500,000
Los Angeles over 500,000
Denver over 100,000
New York over 200,000
Chicago over 200,000
Boston over 100,000
Paris over 5,000
Sydney over 5,000