Wednesday, February 17, 2010


I don't think I've ever told this story on here before.
Last summer, outside the public library in my hometown, I met an old man. An ambulance was going by, and he began to explain to me why ambulances sound the way that they do. He was heading to the diner next door to have breakfast. I asked if he wanted company and he did.
He ate breakfast and I ate grilled cheese. He was from Greece. He hadn't been there in decades, I'm not sure he ever went back after his family came to the United States to start their life. When he was growing up, his father ran a candy store in Clinton. His dream was to go back to Greece once more in his life.
He told me about his wife. I have a hard time remembering the whole story now. I wish I had written it down. I think I might have it written down somewhere. I remember that their wedding date was June 22, and I liked that because 22 has always been my favorite number.
Anyway, he told me that his wife would marry him on one condition: that he never said 'I love you,' that he only showed it. He said he spent his whole life showing her how much he loved her. She has been gone a few years now, and it was so clear how much he misses her. I thought that was so wonderful, that he spent his whole life showing her. I'm sure they said 'I love you' occasionally, I can't imagine never saying it, but that wasn't where the prevalence was. 
I think about him sometimes, and I hope he got to return to Greece and see it again.


Parker said...

I love this post so much. I love that you went out to eat with him. That you remembered his story. That it meant something to you and you shared it with me. It really made my whole day.


p.s. Dan and I were married on April 22 because Dan's favorite number is 22 (just like you) and my favorite number is 11 (11 times 2 = 22).

Amanda Atkins said...

I'm so glad you loved the post. :) I wanted to share his advice about showing that you love someone instead of just saying it. I feel like that is something we forget all too easily.
I love that you guys got married on the 22nd all because of favorite numbers! That is so great. :)

A Painted Journey said...

I hope you run into him again sometime, honey. I loved hearing that story again. I also love the photograph. Love, Mumsy

lindsey said...

i found you through kat. what a beautiful and powerful post. cannot wait to finish poking around.


madeleine said...

that just breaks my heart and puts it back together again. i'm so glad that there are people like that in the world, people who will talk to strangers, eat with them and remember them. that's love.


Amanda Atkins said...

thanks mom, lindsey, and madeleine. <3