by Helen Nolden
Minnie and I were invited to Joe and Catherine Vetter’s 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration in Selz, ND. We had known Catherine from childhood. She was the youngest daughter of Jacob and Margaret Kroll. She was a close chum of Minnie’s. They have kept in touch through the years.
Joe and Catherine were going to renew their wedding vows on this day. All of their children were in the church, as were their grandchildren. So many of their friends were also there.
The children had decorated the church with streamers and balloons. The guest table had a few lavender balloons, a lit candle and the guest book. On the wall above the candle were about two dozen lavender balloons.
When Minnie and I got there, most of the people were in the pews. Joe and Catherine were near the altar and their children in the front pews. The priest was talking to an altar boy. A young woman pinned a corsage on Minnie and I. Minnie signed the guest book and went to a pew.
When I leaned over to sign the guest book, my corsage fell off. The pin hit one of the balloons and it popped. It spun around and knocked over the candle, which lit the ribbon that led to the two dozen balloons over the wall.
For a moment it was like a scene from “The Gunfight at the O.K. Coral”. As the balloons were popping I couldn’t believe I was in a church.
For a moment it all quieted down. I turned around and of course everyone in the church had turned around to look who the noise-maker was. There was no place for me to hide. No little boys to blame. I felt so stupid. Thank goodness for the priest. He said “No m’am we celebrate after the ceremony“.
At the reception, two little boys came up to me and told me and one told the other this was the noisy lady celebrating the 4th of July in their church. Don’t know why things like that happens to me, but they do and often.