woensdag 30 juli 2014

Day 21. Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité

Late in the morning we took the car to go to Bergerac.
The city of Cyrano.
The man with the long nose who fell in love with his beautiful niece Roxanne.
Ofcourse he is visible in the city.

There are two statues, but I liked this one the best.

The city itself is pleasant, but not that special.
We walked around.
Had lunch with view on the Dordogne river.
Visited some churches.

As we passed a school I saw the words:

Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité.

Immediately my mind went of to the discussions this year in France when the politicians had to make a decission about the law which would make it possible for gay people to get married.
One could see that a big part of the French society was at this point very conservative.
And that: Freedom, Equality and Brotherhood had a very different meaning than during the French Revolution more than 200 years ago.
What did happen during all those years? How could a part of the society became so strongly against it?
I was shocked when I read article about it. 
What is wrong with two people loving eachother who want to get it official?

At the end the law was passed, and gay marriage (gay marriage? You mean marriage! True.) is now possible in all regions of France.

My own marriage.

I got married with Bram after being together 25 years. Before that we never found a reason to get married. Why copy that heterosexual institute? What benefits would it give? Bram had been married and was against that idea of getting married. Grown up with the word freedom it wasn't an issue for me either. During the time when I came out I became very active in the gay movement. Immediately I was involved in a group who would go to schools to talk about homosexuality in classes. It felt as a mission for me. It felt that I want to be outspoken about it. No more hiding. Open and honest.
There wasn't a reason for us to get married. We don't have property or lot's of money which needed to be written down. Live now, not in the future. Perhaps not wise at the end, but we felt it that way.

Than -while on holiday in Danmark- we saw the first male couple getting married in Copenhagen. One with a black suit, the other wearing white. Nothing for us we felt. It is a copy, and we don't want to belong to the married majority of society.

But opinions can change I have found out. It all depends on the situation.
When Bram was diagnozed with an aneurysm he had to go through a major and difficult operation.
I remember that we spoke about it. What to do when things would go wrong? If he would come up in a coma and stay there for a year or more? What would be the outcome? Who would be the spokesperson when things would go wrong? Being together almost 25 years it was clear that I would be that person. 

It became clear that we needed to take a step. I went to the City hall and got information. Strange brochures with brides in white weddingdresses and grooms in black suits. No male/male or female/female couple was visible.
While cycling home I met up with Bram's former accountant who advized me to get married. Everything is than legally arranged. The same rights as everyone who got married.

I came home. Told Bram what his accountant had said. Bram immediately replied. 
Allright than, let's get married, but I don't want to talk more about it, otherwise I probably won't do it. And than: what do we need to do first? Fetching the divorce papers in Amsterdam. Let's go than. It took a few weeks to get everything arranged.
We didn't talk about it. We asked Evelien and Theo to be witnesses at the wedding. 
It became a morning to be remembered. No fancy clothes, but holding his hand when we said yes to eachother was very special. The hand I knew so well after all those years. We promised to be there in good and in bad times. Little did I know at that time what the future would bring for us.
Looking back it was the best thing we did at that time. It was positive and an important step for the both of us.
We had coffee and cake in a restaurant. Got a beautiful gift and in the afternoon we had to go to the hospital for the last check. Everything was allright. The operation could go through.

Marriage. It is about equal rights for everyone. 
I am not sure if I ever will marry again. 
Time will tell.
At this moment the love in my life is enough, and for the moment there is no reason to do it again. It is good the way it is.

1 opmerking:

  1. dan was je vlak bij Isegeac en Montaut waar Ineke woont. Die ken je nog van de academie, was een klasgenoot van Paul LOL