Thursday, March 10, 2016

When Lou Met Gertie

They were as different as Harry and Sally. Her family was Litvak - from Lithuania and Latvia via England. His family was Galitzianer - from Ukraine and Minsk. Her father was a Union man in the garment industry; his parents owned and operated a small grocery store. Lou's cousin, Debbie, was Gertie best friend. He often was at Debbie's house when Gertie was visiting. They disagreed about everything, just like Harry and Sally. Until...

Lou and Gertie happened to visit Toronto on the same weekend. Gertie was there to attend a wedding. The bride asked whether she knew anyone in Toronto whom she would like to invite as a dancing partner. "Well," Gertie wrinkled her nose, "Lou Lutsky is in town. I suppose I could ask him."

Lou agreed willingly enough. "I guess so," he replied when she telephoned him. "There's nothing else to do in Toronto on a Sunday."

When they stepped out onto the dance floor, and Dad took Mom in his arms, a seed was planted that grew into a lifelong love. They dated frequently until Dad joined the Canadian army during World War II. He served in the Quartermaster Corps, driving trucks that supplied the fighting units in Italy and the Netherlands. Mom saved one of his letters - written during a lecture on correct use of gas masks. The words of love were unspoken, but filled the spaces between the pencilled lines that described the effects of mustard gas. She also saved a birthday card that he'd sent to her from England. The front cover was replete with flowery references to 'three little words' which, when the card was opened, were revealed to be, 'Phooey, phooey, phooey.' He was such a romantic!

Mom and Dad were married on March 10, 1946, seventy years ago today.

1 comment:

  1. Awww nice to read. Happy Anniversary Auntie Gertie and Uncle Lou!

    When I still lived in Montreal, I once unexpectedly saw them out together, getting ice cream cones and holding hands while they walked. They were very much in phooey. ;)