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Monologue of Hugh Lowrance

Lowrance, Hugh
Lowrance, Jessica
Date of Interview: 
Relationships with People and Places; Then and Now
Hugh Lowrance tells the story of how he met his wife while playing doubles tennis on a blind date.
Charlotte Narrative and Conversation Collection
Collection Description: 
Jessica Lowrance interviews her father to collect stories for a class project at UNC Charlotte.
Interview Audio: 
HL (Hugh Lowrance): Few people are fortunate enough to be able to pinpoint life-changing events. Fortunately, I'm able to, to pinpoint one that happened to me because it happened in the recent history of my life. It happened to me in, in 1993. To give you a little bit of brief history, I came out of the 80s like a lot of people did, kind of floundering, trying to figure out some new directions. I'd been through a lot of violent up and down swings and created peaks and valleys in my financial life and emotional life, and, course I'm sure my, my mental frame, but everything settled down and I was going along, had a good job, was dating a lady. Just enjoying life in general, had a wonderful relationship with my two precious daughters. One of my hobbies,vices,pleasures was playing tennis. I played tennis out at Charlotte Tennis Club. I've been a member out there for quite some time, primarily playing men's doubles and men's singles. Played a lot more men's singles in the 80s than I did in the 90s, as we had gotten older we seemed to migrate more towards men's doubles. Had a group of guys that I played tennis with on Monday nights, and, at the time, Thursday nights and Saturday and Sunday afternoons for quite some time. On one particular Monday night we were playing mixed doubles, played against, played beside, rather, a group of women, all of whom I knew and we'd kind of kidded because this was a group of very attractive women, three of whom I knew, but the fourth one I didn't know. Like I say, I was playing with some friends of mine and, and I was literally smitten, almost like a sixteen-year-old, by this new woman, so much so to where it was very, very difficult for me focus, on my game that day and I was pretty much a, a weak link in the match for that entire period. Well, could never catch the eye of this new player, so the match was over, their match was over, they left, I left, and just kind of went on with my life. Well, a few weeks after that, I ran into one of the other ladies there who, along with her husband, were friends of mine and I asked her who that person was. And she told me who she was, she said her name is Sally Trull, she lives in Gastonia, she's married, I mean she's, uh, divorced, and has three children. And she said, "And she's looking for somebody who plays tennis and has a sense of humor." And I said, "Well, that would definitely be me," however, at the time, I was dating someone and didn't think too terribly much about it. Well, low and behold, several weeks later I received a call from this lady, asked me if I wanted to play mixed doubles on a Friday night. It would be she and her husband against myself and Sally. So I said, "Certainly." We all agreed to meet at the club at six o'clock. Well, I got there, Sallywas there, she had come straight from work. However, our club closes on Friday nights so she wasn't able to get in, which wasn't that much of a hindrance. The real hindrance was the fact that she had left her tennis shoes under her desk at work, so he, she had showed up to play tennis with all of her equipment, her racket, and no shoes, which is just a very, very bad combination. Well, we had no choice but to get shoes. Of course she, at the time, was living in Gastonia and really didn't know her way around Charlotte very much at all. So we decided to go to Omega Sports, which is at the Arboretum. We were at our tennis club, which is over near Quail Corners Shopping Center, it's really not all that terribly convenient. So we hopped in my car and rode to Omega Sports to get some shoes. This particular ride was probably the most crucial point in our relationship. Both of us are quite gregarious and we talked to each other a good bit. And in the 15 to 20 minute ride to Omega Sports, as well as the 15 to 20 minute ride back from Omega Sports, we both gave each other a very good thumbnail of our lives and where we were and what was going on and, and the type person that we were. It was very informative to me I could feel a very, very strong attraction to, Sally, but I knew I had this other relationship going on, um, and didn't really want to do anything to jeopardize a potential relationship with Sallybecause of the other relationship. So, we went back, played our match, and as has always been the case with Sallyand I, or most of the time has been the case with Sallyand I, we won this match. After it was over, everyone wanted to go out and eat, but I couldn't because Jocelyn was at home. And I said, "I can't, I really thought this was just a tennis match, I've got to go home, my daughter's there." So, I went home, didn't hear anything for a while. A couple of weeks later, Sallycalled and invited me to go to Jazz Fest uptown. [Pause] She explained a story about a group of people from work and I think maybe they'd even rented a van, um, and were making the rounds, I can't remember all the details of it, but she said, "And I thought maybe you'd want to go," and she added this cleverly, "Unless you're seeing someone else." So I was honest with her, told her I was and that it was in the process of winding down, um, but I really appreciated the invitation. So we, once again, parted ways. Several weeks later, after the other relationship had run its course and had been completely wound down, um, I invited Sallyto go to a, um, I think 25th anniversary party with some, some people that I worked with. Um, we ended up getting together that Friday night before, to meet some other friends of mine to kind of give her a baptism by fire. Um, and she played tennis at our club on Saturday, and then we got together and went to the anniversary party, and ended up out with some friends of ours after that was over, and, I think, basically spent the entire weekend together, and I just became closer and closer and closer to her. I know that I fell in love with her that weekend, um, and ever since then, she has been an absolutely fantastic part of my life, very integral to the person that, uh, I have become. And it's just been an amazing period of time to me that I was so fortunate to find so much of a, to use a very corny term, soul-mate, at that particular point in time in my life when I'd really kind of thrown a towel in on that. Um, but that's, that's a little story about how I, uh, I met my wife, uh, how important she is to me, how things just kind of clicked, all because she left a pair of shoes under her desk and sent us off on the relationship where we are. Now, um, thank you.