|Rosemary- Grade 10 - Age 14 - I958|
My Rosemary was a hoarder. She kept beverything. Our eldest daughter Ale is going through her extensive files and is showing me stuff I have never seen like the school pictures here. My Rosemary would have made a very good poker player as she kept everything inside. I talked to her about my family to the point I must have bored her. Of her family I knew little and of former boyfriends, absolutely nothing.
In one of those actions that I never thought I ever had to do or even have a concept of, it was necessary for me to provide a marriage certificate so my Rosemary can be converted into ashes. I did not know where to look for such a thing. There is a reason for this.
When we first attempted to be married in Mexico City in 1968, the Mexican judge told us that since I was not a Mexican but a Mexican immigrant and Rosemary was Canadian I needed permission from Gobernación (the Mexican Secretary of External Affairs). We thought this was not true and the idea of going through the bureaucracy was something we wanted to avoid. So we tried two other judges in different places in the city. We got the same negative reception. Since this was taking weeks my friends and family kept asking me if I had married Rosemary. My mother lived in Veracruz so coming to Mexico City was not an easy thing.
On our fourth attempt (my mother was not present) I went to
see a judge in the lovely and historic México City neighbourhood of Coyoacán. I
took with me an expensive bottle of French Cognac for the judge. Our friend Raúl Guerrero
Montemayor was one of the witnesses, the others we brought in from the street. We were married, at last!
Tonight Ale placed in front of me our marriage certificate and told me, “Abi helped me find it.” Abi is how my family called Rosemary (a shortcut for the Spanish abuelita for grandmother). I may have looked perplexed as before Rosemary died I am sure Ale never discussed the certificate. It seems that this idiot and non-perceptive father failed to realize that Ale had channelled Rosemary and that is why the document was found.
Rosemary hoarded fine purses, beautiful shoes, bills for everything we bought, tax records that went back 20 years cut out
articles from the NYTimes we ever bought for our daughters and kept just about everything
else - and, yes school pictures.
Here you will see part of Rosemary’s collection of reading glasses. My daughter Hilary wears glasses so she will pick one of these frames and I will go and have her prescription put into it.
Rosemary always felt uncomfortable wearing glasses. When we arrived in Vancouver in 1975 she got contact lenses.You can imagine what it was like in our Burnaby home on Springer Avenue, when before we were to go out to a party or the movies she would drop one of her contacts on our "delightful" shag carpet!