A True Love Story
Rodolfo & Susana Escalera
As told by Rudy Escalera Jr.
This story is about how my parents first met. I can remember one day I was home alone with my mom and I asked her the question as to how her and my dad had met. I was about 13 years old. For some reason the question popped into my head. So when asked, my mom said, come sit down and I'll tell you the story. Keep in mind, I already knew, even at this age, what kind of man my father was, and how much my mother meant to him. So here is what she shared with me.
Both of them grew up in a small town in Mexico called Gomez Palacio, typical small town, peaceful and laid back. During the summer months, it was very common for the townspeople to gather in the local park and enjoy the evening walking, eating ice cream, and listening to live music on the bandstand.
On one particular summer evening, my mother and a friend were sitting on a park bench having a bowl of ice cream and enjoying the evening. Another common fact was that many of the young bachelor men would walk around and circle the park in hopes of being noticed by all the young maidens. The men well dressed and strutting their stuff to impress. My father was no different. He walked alone, "all five foot seven" of him. Very proud and absolutely very macho. That's just him as my mother explained. I knew very well what she was talking about. Anyway, as the story continued, she was sitting with her friend, and when my father passed the bench they were sitting on, he stopped, right in his tracks. Looked their way and then proceeded to walk in their direction. He got to within about ten feet and just stood there looking at them both. The ladies looked back and asked if there was something they could do for him as they had never seen him before. What happened next will go down in Escalera History. My mom said that when asked that question, this is how my father responded.
He looked straight at my mother and introduced himself as Rodolfo Escalera. Then said, "I just wanted you to know that I have chosen YOU to be my wife!!" At that moment the two ladies looked at each other in shock that a total stranger would say something like that. With a confused look on her face my mother responded, "Oh really? And who are you again please?" His response was simply, "I just wanted you to know," and just turned and walked away. Even at 13 years of age, when I heard that I said to my mother, "ARE YOU serious???" She said, "Yes." So I asked, "What did you do?" As he walked away, she said that her friend turned to her and asked, "What just happened?" My mother replied, "I have no idea!! But it appears I'm engaged!!" They laughed and enjoyed the rest of the evening.
What my father did next was nothing short of amazing. He went home and prepared something for the next time he would see her. And the very next day, just like the day before, people were at the park enjoying the summer night. Both my mom and her friend were there as well, sitting at the very same bench. When guess who arrived? My father approached the bench and said hello to them both. My mom simply said, well hello, we meet again. My father then said, "excuse me" to my moms friend and told her he had something he would like to give to my mother. The friend said, "go right ahead." Now with my fathers attention directed straight at my mother he presented her with a gift. Something he worked on the very second he got home the night before, after they had met. He then handed her a hand drawing of the two of them, in great detail of them both in a full embrace kissing. The detail was them exactly! After just meeting her for a short period, he had her looks, her facial features, hair, embedded in his mind. And then my mom went on to say, that from that moment on, he had stolen her heart. Just like that. And from that day forward would begin a love story that lasted almost 50 years in the making. Never slowing down but continuously growing. Up until the day my father passed. For ten years after his death, my mother's love for my father continued to grow even stronger. Hard to believe but very true. They are now together again, and I know the love is still there.