NEWTON PARK couple Gavin and Eleanor Muniz celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary last month, saying the church and regular communication have both been a pillar of strength in their marriage. “We have been actively involved in church life and attended various marriage enrichment workshops. In essence, it is important for us to put God first. Communication is also vital, one has got to be able to say what one feels or thinks, how else will your partner know?” Gavin said.
Eleanor agreed: “Communication has also been key.”
The pair is looking forward to a 30th anniversary treat from their two children Claudia, 28 and Robin, 24. “In November we are going on the MSC cruise to the Portuguese Island in Mozambique that our children blessed us with for our anniversary gift,” Eleanor said.
Safety officer Gavin married pharmacist assistant Eleanor, nee Jackson, on April 21 – Easter weekend – 1984, at the Gelvandale Baptist Church after meeting at a church youth gathering.
“Being a bit shy it took me a while to muster up the courage to really get things going you know. I think I was attracted to her smile, and also the way she looked at me,” he said. Eleanor remembered that although Gavin seemed “quite shy and only spoke when spoken to” he was also quite “prim and proper”. She said in the end this “worked out perfectly”.
But for Gavin, the realisation that his “Ella” was the one “was more progressional”.
“The more time we spent together the more inevitable it seemed that we would get married,” he said.
Reminiscing, Eleanor said their wedding reception at the West End Community Centre was “made special with everything just falling into place and having all the family and friends attend.
“I remember when I was leaving my parents’ house heading to the church, the whole neighbourhood was in the street.
“My only gripe is that the wedding day finally arrived, and was gone again … it was over too quickly. The next day I said I wanted get married again.”
Gavin cannot forget how his wife was on the day: “I saw my bride looking as beautiful as ever,” he remembered.
Gavin said he loved his wife’s “tell like it is” character, her understanding and her ability to be sympathetic.
Although Gavin is mostly “just too lazy to cook” Eleanor said “I love my husband, because he does practically everything for me”. Gavin said his family enjoyed going on holidays: “up until today the kids still speak of a Pine Lake Marina vacations we had years ago.” – Balisa Ntloko