This post is connected in some ways to the post that I wrote about meeting and falling in love with my wife, Joy. If you have not read it yet – check it out first here.
Now, on to a funny story.
It’s no secret that I’m a fan of Southern Gospel music. As a teenager, I often watched Gaither Homecoming videos at home with my parents and even went to the occasional concert. Usually, the concerts were filled to capacity with an over 50 crowd – and Jonny. 🙂
To my friends at church, it was often said that I was a 65-year-old, trapped in a 20-something body. I wore Kahki pants, button up shirts, Rockport shoes and listened to Gaither music.
I was not your typical 21-year-old, but I really didn’t care either.
At some point in late fall of 1999 or early 2000, I got the opportunity to go to a Gaither Homecoming concert at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. A few people from our church were taking a small bus to the concert, and so I quickly bought 2 tickets thinking I would go with someone.
As the day approached, I wasn’t having much luck finding someone to go with (I have no idea why…lol) and so I asked my friend Morgan to go with me. Morgan was a year or two younger than I was, we went to the same high school and youth group. Morgan was a fellow farm kid like me and for some unknown reason, he didn’t have better plans for a Saturday night either.
Morgan and I are “similar” in height, although I think he was about 1 inch taller. We had a similar build and he had dark hair like me. I suppose one could mistake him for me if your eyesight wasn’t very good or if it was dark or crowded.
And that’s exactly what happened.
As you will recall from the previous post about our “love story,” this was during that in-between time when Joy and I were just friends. We corresponded back and forth via email and hung out on weekends – I was in love and in my mind, I was dating her… 🙂
At the time Joy lived with a roommate (Melissa) whom she had known since they were in grade 9. Melissa was also in the second year of university and as it turns out, was a big Southern Gospel music fan.
When Joy heard that Melissa and I were both going to be at the same concert, she mentioned to Melissa “Oh, Jonny’s going to be there.”
Melissa asked how she would know who I was so Joy mentioned that I was short. It would have been more descriptive if she had said that I was short, walked with a limp or that I was crippled-looking, but she was likely trying to be nice or sensitive.
Let’s be honest – at some point in time, if you know me personally and you were trying to explain to someone else who I was, you likely mentioned my height and the fact that I had a disability or walked with a limp. FYI – I am not offended. Those are descriptors, not labels.
Anyway, the concert was great! The Gaither Vocal Band was there and a few of the old Southern Gospel legends that have long since passed away. It was a good time.
After it was over I made my way to where we were meeting our bus and somehow Morgan and I got separated. I managed to beat him back to the bus, so I took my seat and waited.
A moment later, through the window, I saw Morgan coming toward the bus and there was a girl with him. She was tall and thin, but I had no idea who she was.
As it turns out, this girl was Joy’s roommate, Melissa!
She had been walking through the crowd of thousands of people and had spotted Morgan. Melissa walked up to Morgan and said: “Are you Jonny?”
He was a little confused for a second and said “No…but I came with Jonny…he’s over there on the bus”
How weird is that!?!?
Out of the 15,000+ people there, Melissa had spotted Morgan wondering if he was Joy’s friend Jonny!
Morgan brought her over to the bus and introduced Melissa to me. We had a short chat in the chaos of the crowded area outside the arena and then she left. This was the first time I would meet Melissa in person. Who would have thought that just 3.5 years later, she would be the Maid of Honour in our wedding!
Today, Joy and Melissa are still good friends and I still keep in touch with Morgan. Thank you Facebook.
The same year Joy and I were married, Melissa got married to a great guy named Al and they have a son, Nathan. Although separated by a little distance we still keep in touch and even went on a cruise together a few years ago. Below are a few pics from our cruise; Notice that I have to stand one entire step higher than Joy, just to be the same height. 🙂