OPINION COLUMNS

Wedding bells are ringing in East Texas

By Jimmy Alford | Published Saturday, June 22, 2013

{{{*}}}I’ve never been big on jewelry, but I guess that needs to change.

After tonight, I’ll be wearing a wedding ring.

Jimmy Alford

Jimmy Alford

As you read this, I’m back home in Pittsburg putting on my tuxedo and focusing on the future. My vows are ready, and the bride is somewhere in the building making sure her hair and makeup are just right before we walk down the aisle.

Of course, I’m writing this the day before the ceremony, so I can’t tell you exactly what I’ll be feeling at this moment, but I anticipate a few jitters, a good dose of excitement and anticipation of what the future holds.

In the days before the wedding, I didn’t have a bachelor party. Instead, I went fishing with my dad. There are few things better than sitting on the banks of a pond reeling in a good catch. The weather was perfect. It was slightly overcast with a nice breeze and not too hot.

After packing the gear into the Jeep, my dad decided it was time to give me some sage advice – not about getting married, but making a marriage last.

Patience is No. 1 on the list, he said. Nicole and I will not always agree. In fact, we may not agree on much, but finding middle ground and keeping my cool is the only way to make the marriage stick.

We also are never going to think alike. Nicole is her own person, and the same is true for me, so there is no reason I should expect her to read my mind.

Dad then looked at me very seriously and spoke very clearly. He said, “Don’t complain. Make suggestions and comments, but try not to criticize too much.”

The advice must be solid. My parents have been happily married for 30 years.

As I contemplated his words of wisdom, the red ear bream, crappie and bass were all biting also one troublesome turtle. But it was a great day and the perfect start to my weekend.

I can only hope that my marriage is as strong as that of my parents. But I think we’re off to a good start – we’re partners, best friends and we’re in love.

Jimmy Alford is a reporter for the Wise County Messenger.

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