When we were in Atlanta, we lived in a cul-de-sac that housed 10 families. Except for one family who was originally born and raised in Georgia, all others were transients. Yes, they were from all over, Kentucky, Texas, California, Arkansas … strange, not one from Wisconsin.

All came because of business opportunities. Many huge corporations built their home base in Atlanta, UPS, Delta Air Line, Coca-Cola and many others; and of course, they would recruit talent from all over the country to help them grow their business.

Through living in the same cul-de-sac, we saw each other every day, yet we hardly mingled with each other at all. Maybe a waved hello or goodbye to each other when one pulled out of the driveway, and that was the only contact we had. Sad, but that’s life on a busy lane.

Then, things changed one year on the Fourth of July, when one family decided to have a party. What a nice gesture indeed, and it brought all of us strangers together. The family grilled hot dogs and burgers (no one had heard of brats) for everyone and asked the neighbors to bring something to help celebrate.

Goodness, we all did; and what a party we had — bean salad, Jell-O pudding, baked beans — everyone had a blast. It wasn’t just the food, but the opportunity to get to know each other a bit more. 

There was an elderly couple across from us who we knew as Mr. and Mrs. Kaminski. They must have been around their seventies, and were one of the friendliest couples I’ve ever met. They took walks in the mornings around 7:30 a.m., always holding hands, walking slowly together.

I found out later that they met each other at a concentration camp in Poland during WWII. After the liberation, they separated and lost contact for many years. As in a miracle, they met each other again many years later at a Holocaust reunion. They were married a week later and moved to Atlanta, their new home. They promised each other that they would never ever leave each other again. Oh, my goodness, how romantic indeed. My heart melts every time when I see an elderly couple walk hand in hand, or the husband would put his arm around the lady’s waist ever so gently.

Then I recalled so many funny jokes about husbands and wives. They are all from different perspectives, but that’s life, it’s all how you look at it. Ah, life is short, let’s have some fun.

• A husband was reading the paper in the living room and heard his wife’s voice from the kitchen, “So, what would you like for dinner? The spring salmon, juicy roast beef or scrumptious chicken?” Elated, the husband said, “Oh, roast beef would be great.” Then the voice from the kitchen, “I’m talking to the cat.”

• A wife was mad at her husband and she gave him an ultimatum. “To forgive you, I’d better see something in our driveway in pink tomorrow, that can go from 0 to 200 in 6 seconds. You got it?” The next morning, the wife saw a nice package in the driveway. She was curious and opened it. It was a pink scale. … They are still looking for the body of the husband.

• The wife was looking at the mirror and said to the husband, “Honey, do you think I look fat?” The husband was reading the paper, and without looking up, he said, “Honey, do you think I look stupid?”

• A couple of buddies were chatting over a beer or two. One asked the other, “Hey, I heard you guys went out for dinner last night. Where did you go?” The other guy paused for a second, and said, “Hmm, let me think, what’s the name of the flower that has thorns?” The buddy replied, “Rose, is that it?” “Yes, thanks.” Then he yelled to the kitchen, “Hey, Rose, what’s the name of the restaurant that we went to last night?”

• A father and son went to a fast-food restaurant and saw that an elderly couple were also there to have dinner. The couple ordered a burger, some fries and a soda. They cut the burger in half and counted the fries evenly, and then sat smiling at each other. The husband was enjoying his share while the wife patiently waited, having a sip of the soda occasionally. The father wanted to show the son the gift of giving, so he took his son and went to the table of the couple and said, “Folks, I saw what you did and my son and I are touched. Would you mind if we buy you folks an extra meal so you both can enjoy?” The wife said, “Thank you sir, you’re most generous. But I’m just waiting for his teeth so I can enjoy my meal.”

• A wife called her husband at work and complained that the car wasn’t working right because there was water in the carburetor. The husband said, “You know nothing about cars, how would you know that water gets into a carburetor? By the way, where is the car?” She answered, “In the pool.”

• In the medical checkup room, the nurse went to the male patient and said, “Sir, before we can go on with any more checkup, we’ll need further samples of your urine and stool.” The husband, a little hard of hearing, said loudly, “What do you want?” The wife calmly said, “Honey, she needs your underwear.”

I am amazed that folks who have been married a long, long time are still happily married. It takes a lot for two strangers to unite as one and act together as one, through thick and thin. Ah, life is short, so much to learn. And hats off to those lovers. Many more years to come.

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