2009 Our 20th Anniversary in Hong Kong

We spent the 20th anniversary of the day we met in Los Angeles exploring the Hong Kong Wetlands Park and took a snap to commemorate the event.

Our 20th anniversary commemoration snap--this is now--with the Black-faced spoonbill looking on

And then there was then:
1989--Didn't we look good?

1989 was a momentous year worldwide. Time Magazine's June 29-July 6, 2009 Summer Journey Double Issue declared on the front cover: "1989 20 years ago, the world changed". Inside the magazine, in a section called "'89 The Year That Changed the World" Michael Elliott said in an article called "Shifting on its Pivot, The unparalleled events of 20 years ago triggered forces that are still shaping our world today":

"Yet 1989 truly was one of those years that the world shifted on its pivot. Somethings did change, and changed utterly; we are living with their consequences still. Some things ended too--not just communism as a state practice, for example, but also the idea that the international system is driven solely by state action. In a way that was only dimly perceived 20 years ago, elements such as multinational business, technological innovation and personal faith now shape our world just as states do. Whatever the importance of events after 1989, the year itself is one for the ages."
And for Dimitri and Audre too 1989 was the year that changed our lives, and for the much, much better. We met on a blind date in LA that was arranged by two different people. First, Audre's manicurist, Zhanna Brodsky, a Russian immigrant, couldn't bear that Audre was single. So she asked each of her customers to fix Audre up. Each Saturday, Karen Kaplowitz would also have a manicure with Zhanna and would be asked by Zhanna to fix Audre up on a blind date.

Audre and Zhanna (Audre's yenta) in 1998

In 1988, Dimitri went on a 9-month sabbatical after he took early retirement from Xerox. When he returned to LA in 1989, he called Alan Cohen with whom he had worked many years before. He told Alan that he was "out of a girlfriend" and needed fixing up on a blind date. Then Alan talked to Karen, his wife. And bingo, Karen remembered that Zhanna wanted Audre fixed up on a blind date.

Karen and Alan in 1998

Neither was optimistic that the match would work. Karen thought Audre was too traditional and formal for Dimitri. Alan thought Dimitri was too casual for Audre. But the match did work and it has continued to work.

We have grown into a couple with a durable love, a bond of friendship and respect, and complementing strengths. When we were on the Delfin Amazon cruise in 2007 (click here to read about it), Lissy (one of the owners of the Delfin) said that while she knew that Dimitri and I were two different people, she perceived a unique fusion of the two of us into a magical unit. She said that she had even had a conversation about us with some of the other women on the cruise and they had agreed with her. What a wonderful thing to say and, if true, what an achievement! Since Dimitri and Audre met in 1989 he has been saying that we should think as a couple, not as individuals. It appears we’re making progress.
We are together 365/24/7 and have a great time together. We have become 2 peas in a very enjoyable pod.

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