It is because of JDate that I met the love of my life. In 2010, after 32 years of marriage, I got divorced. I hadn’t dated in a very long time and was nervous about jumping in again. In the meantime, a year before, Kenny had lost his wife after 36 years of marriage. He, too, was nervous.
Although we both grew up in Balto, Maryland, just two miles apart, we both moved to Florida as adults. Kenny is my age. I remembered him from high school, but he didn’t know me. One day, I happened to be looking at JDate’s new photo section and came across his picture. Even though I lived in Orlando, and he was living in St. Petersburg, I was intrigued. Who was this Kenny from Balto, who was my age?
I called my girlfriend and she told me, “You remember him. He’s Kenny Davis who was married to Harriet.” So the very first email I sent him off of JDate’s website was, “Are you Kenny Davis who was married to Harriet?” Needless to say, he almost fell off of his chair. He responded to my email and I sent him back another stating that if he wanted to chat, here’s my phone number. He called me right away and we spoke for three hours.
Even though we went to different high schools, we hung out at all of the same places. One night, he was kibitzing in the parking lot of our favorite hang-out, S & H Restaurant, and he crashed his friend’s motorcycle. He never walked into the restaurant, but his friend did. He told everyone who was within earshot that Kenny had just crashed a motorcycle. I don’t know why it bothered me, but I remember asking twice, “Is he alright? Is he alright?” His friend assured me that Kenny was ok. Then I said, “What is his
last name?” I was told it was Davis. I remember thinking that he wasn’t Jewish, and S & H was where all the Jewish kids hung out.
Flash forward another 42 years and here I was talking to the very same Kenny Davis who crashed the motorcycle that night. I knew Kenny’s deceased wife, Harriet, from summer camp. My brother, Ricky, introduced Kenny’s sister, also named Joy, to her future husband. They have been married more than 40 years.
I know you are only supposed to go for coffee on the first date, but this was not the case with our first meeting. After a three hour phone call, I told Kenny I happened to have an extra ticket to a gala for a nonprofit where I served as a committee member. Here it is, Wednesday night, and I said to Kenny, “I know we have been talking for a while. I happened to have a spare ticket to the Hospice Gala for this Saturday night. It is near Disney, would you like to come?”
I figured if things didn’t work, I would have a built-in excuse that I am on the committee and have things to attend to for the evening. This was a 700 person, black tie event. Kenny decided to come and I told him to meet me there, I’ll be the girl in the red dress.
That girl in the red dress is now his wife. We saw each other as much as possible from that point on. We called it the I-4 romance, since one or the other traveled up and down Interstate 4 to see each other.
True love and romance can happen after 60, and after long marriages, and we owe it all to you. Everyone says that we look much younger than our 62 years and that we seem so happy. And by the way, we still go back to Balto, and when we do, we always stop by S & H Restaurant for a meal.
So, thank you JDate for bringing us together. If it can happen to us after 42 years, it can happen to anyone. And now for the rest of the story; we have 4 wonderful kids between us and 4 beautiful grandkids. (Maybe one day the grandkids will meet their Beshert on JDate also!)
Joy and Kenny