Destino: A Turning Point
I was standing at the cat food counter in a grocery store, mulling the choices and trying to make a decision about which brand would best appeal to Abigail and Thomasina, when behind me this voice says, "Don't I know you?"
It was Bermuda 1968, and I had been working as a nurse at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital for the past two years. The voice behind me was that of a handsome and pleasant Italian who worked at one of Bermuda's major resort hotels.
We had indeed met, one year before in May of 1967 at a party given by some hotel employees. Most were European and with rare exception all good cooks! The prospect of fine European cuisine was all the enticement we nurses needed.
The handsome Italian was Piero, although he introduced himself as Peter, when he came to pick up five of us at the nurses’ residence. Peter's girlfriend had called me and asked me to find a few girls for the party.
Upon arriving at the party, we all dispersed. I socialized a bit, enjoyed a delicious meal and then took a cab home.
A day or two later Peter called. He got my number from his girlfriend, a rather a cheeky move, I thought. We went out for coffee and a few days later for dinner and a few more days later a walk on the beach. It was apparent his intentions were serious. Mine were not. I had decided to work on securing a nursing job in London and so we went our separate ways.
It was the meeting in the grocery store in May 1968 that was surely a turning point. In the year which had elapsed, we had pursued different paths. We had each grown, changed and moved forward with our lives. Peter, on a visit to his family in Italy, had underwritten the purchase of a small restaurant for his family to own and manage thus improving their income. I had secured the post at the hospital in London and was scheduled to leave Bermuda in September.
However, when the stars align, time passes and the elements come together, a life changing moment is readily identified and deeply felt.
We married in November 1969 and were able to share new adventures and the joy of love which I can only describe as, "preferring one another's company to anyone else's." And so it was for almost 47 years.
Peter always called it "Destino."