Courtship made marriage
People had 'a whole different attitude' thenLOUISE BERWICK
It was the year Tim Shadbolt was born, Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip, and Frances Hodgkins died, but for Edward, now 88, and Mavis Falvey, 86, it was an important year for another reason. On Monday, Edward and Mavis marked 65 years since they took their vows at Chalmers Church in 1947.
The couple, who have spent most of their life in South Canterbury, said getting married in 1947 was rather different from tying the knot in the 21st century.
In those days, a couple got married before they lived together, not the other way round, Mr Falvey said.
People had "a whole different attitude" then.
Having met at a dance, the couple were "courting" for four years before they finally got married.
It was those four years that ensured the success of their marriage, he said.
It was not love at first sight for the couple though, but as they began to learn how much they had in common, including their love of gardening, things began to flourish.
Mr Falvey spent time in the Merchant Navy while the two dated, and visited some of Mavis' extended family in Scotland, so when he finally returned home, the two married.
There was no secret to the success of their marriage: "just getting on with it" was the best thing you could do, Mr Falvey said.
Saving up money before getting married was also important, Mrs Falvey added.
Mr Falvey said in their day, there was a culture of hard work and a do-it-yourself attitude, painting their own homes and growing a plentiful garden.
"In our time a kitchen garden was almost as essential as the roof over your head."
The couple celebrated their anniversary with a dinner with family and friends, but they are reminded every day of their marriage when they look out of their kitchen window to Chalmers Church steeple, Mrs Falvey said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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