It was now 1972.A telegram came to my parents apartment , and it read :Dear Mr and Mrs Sam Pagliaro, this telegram is being sent to inform you that your daughter Valerie Pagliaro has been married , to Robert E Greenlee with the date inserted .Robert Greenlee was a very old cab driver who helped Paula & and Mike when they relocated to Illinois from Hopatcong on Santa_Fe-Trail after they fled N.Y. showing up with a baby and the pigeons Mike had.He came to pick them up and help drive to Illinois as Mike was in the Air Force so it was where he would be based.Everyone gathered around to read this telegram.My Mother called Paula and the story told was that Valerie was transported to shopping by Bob, and soon both did not return home one night and told everyone that they got married the next day.Valerie and her new husband came to visit us.Paula coached me to take a ride back with them if I was able to , and to visit her for the summer.
When Valerie and Bob arrived to New Jersey, my parents gave up their room and slept on the sofa bed they and sent me to Kathys apartment where all we could do is look at each other in wonder with this new old man brother in law.
Valerie sat on the floor in the living room of the small apartment before she went to bed in my parents bed, and looked up at both parents and said I really love him . She had their blessings. She had my disgust. I could have vomited right there but I said nothing and I left for Kathys. I walked. The thought of riding back with these two really had me down. But I packed , and I told my parents I was going to visit Paula. I packed my clothes and took my favorite doll . The doll that was made in my image for my Mother when I was to stay in the hospital after my birth due to surgery.I dressed in style, wide bell bottom pants, floppy hat, halter top, lots of rings and large hoop earrings , blue mascara, blue eye shadow, red fingernails. This was New Jersey. I packed all of my clothe , I took my parakeet and said goodbye like it was a trip to the store.During the long drive to Illinois Mr and Mrs Greenlee now had checked into a motel. I slept on a day bed in the room within feet of these two married people. Nothing bad happened though. It was bad enough to see this big fat ugly toothless wonder share a bed with my sister. It isn’t like I never saw her in bed with a man because I had at a very young age . And here I was again across from her only a different sitting area . When dawn came we left and got breakfast. I could not stand to look at this fat overgrown douchbag that she married. Just watching him eat his eggs grossed me out. I sat in the back of a small car , sometimes smoking a cigarette, sometimes dozing off , and sometimes taking no doze to stay awake and stare into the night fearing this old geriatric case might wreck . We finally arrived to the Illinois state line. Welcome to Illinois the land of Lincoln. I was excited and kept asking how much longer until we got there. Oh about 12 more hours I was told. Shit I said. I did not want to sleep . When we stopped at a drug store for cigarettes I asked to have some no doze I wanted to stay awake .It would be 12AM before we arrive.