The language of love
Chester Francis Jackson, Gleaner Writer
Often, the language of love, as spoken by some supposed lovers, is really one of manipulation control and servitude! The real language of love is spoken by those who are truly in love, having found their soulmate, companion and confidante. They speak the language of love so blissfully and caringly, it is often quite a joy to be in their presence and an inspiration to hear them.
Horace and Norma Clarke belong to the ranks of true lovers where the language is bliss and their society a pleasure to share! This is remarkably so, as they were married 25 years ago. That is a lifetime in today's culture of instant coffee and fast food.
The Clarkes, he a wily and very successful politician from St Mary, and she a beauty and an administrator from Bonham Springs in Ocho Rios, met just about 28 years ago and through nurturing and caring, their love not only bloomed but blossomed into a beautiful union that saw then tying the knot.
Latest business venture
Since their marriage, the couple has not only nurtured and nourished their families, the needy, and indigent; he has gone on to serve successfully at the highest decision-making level of the legislature and she has worked tirelessly in the arts as patron to various causes. Both have found time to build a partnership that included business interests. Along their way, they met and made many a friends.
Well, to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary, the couple invited friends and relatives to join them at their latest business venture, the awe-inspiring Mystic Mountain, Jamaica's newest and most visited attraction in St Ann.
And what guests thought would have been a wedding anniversary celebration, they got much more. The Clarkes used the opportunity to renew their vows.
With the reception commencing at 6 p.m., guests enjoyed libations at the location with the Clarkes' business partner Mike Drakulich and his son, Mike Drakulich Jr, serving as hosts who welcomed the guests.
At 6:30 p.m., the bride looking fabulous in a turquoise body-fitting gown, and her groom, wearing his trademark sports jacket and dress shirt, appeared and were greeted like rock stars by their adoring friends. They made the rounds before moving under the property's imposing 100-year-old cotton tree. The base of the tree was draped in white cotton fabric, enhancing the platform used for the formalities.
Luvs, as dusk fell, an air of intimacy descended, the gurgling rivulet as it coursed its way to sea from the property, the chirping crickets, croaking lizards, humming engines and other night sounds, added a touch of tropical magic and splendour. The presence of the gathering of political, business and social leaders who have served Jamaica made it even more nostalgic.
Against the background of Wayne Armond entertaining on guitar, master of ceremonies Keith Binns, guided guests through the programme. Reverend Donald Williams led the way in prayers, blessings and the renewal of the vows. Talented soloist Rosalyn Williams' rendition of At Last embraced all the tenets of love in its delivery.
The reception was above the entrance garden and park, via the Sky Explorers. Guests got a taste of the attraction by being transported from the lower gardens and park above tree tops sometimes as much as seventy-feet above the ground, their feet dangling, in the falling light.
The notables included former Prime Minister P.J. Patterson; British Labour Member of Parliament Dianne Abbott; Custos of St Mary Bobby Pottinger and wife Colleen; the esteemed Frank Pringle and Terry Gillette, both former senior Cabinet ministers; Senator K.D. Knight and wife Dr Pauline Knight; Dr Peter and Sandra Phillips; Anthony and Yodit Hylton; John and Urla Junor; Dr Paul Robertson; Arnold and Clare Bertram; Cliff and Joan Stone.
We saw Vin and Beverly Lawrence; Jack and Cynthia Wilmot; Howard Hamilton and wife Professor Dr Marlene Hamilton; Lance and Beverly Johnson; Dr Cezley Sampson; Pat Broderick Taylor; Herman McLarty and wife Dorothy Pine-McLarty; Y.P. and Pat Seaton; Judge Pam Apelt, in from Canada; Dr and Mrs John McDowell; the oh so fabulous Karen Rhone; Alva Anderson; Sylvia Henry Ashley, in from Atlanta; Kirby Clarke; Dr and Mrs Noel Erskine; Claude and Joan Robinson; Ruddy and Yvonne Lawson and Norma Shirley.
Also out were Lesline Davis; Headley and Pearl Brown; the lovely Yvonne Brewster; Dian Watson; and Sigrid Thame; plus several others, but what a way to celebrate one love!