Chapter 35 of the Peter and Gertrud Klopp Story – Part I

Waiting for a Sign of Life from Biene

“The nature of the epistolary genre was revealed to me: a form of writing devoted to another person. Novels, poems, and so on, were texts into which others were free to enter, or not. Letters, on the other hand, did not exist without the other person, and their very mission, their significance, was the epiphany of the recipient.”
― Amélie Nothomb, Life Form


Peter and Biene – On their last Rendezvous in Germany April 1965

A Unique Kind of Love – Part 1

Looking back at our story of over fifty years ago, I do not hesitate one moment to assert that the kind of love between Biene and me, evolving at a snail’s pace over a period of four years has been rather unique among the more common ‘boy-meets-girl’ relationships. Before Biene broke lose from her parental ties and finally joined me in Canada to become my wife, we had met only six times. These were very short visits not longer than half a day for most of our encounters.

In the judgment of society’s accumulated wisdom on love relationships there was not enough time to really get to know each other. The verdict on our chances to succeed would have been abundantly clear. Considering that we did not have the time to test the turbulent waters of a future joint venture such as marriage, our plans to marry would have been declared as doomed to failure right from the very beginning. Being confronted with a seemingly insoluble mystery, one feels compelled to search for an explanation.

My dear readers of the Klopp family blog, who have been following me for quite some time, you already know at least in part the reason for the happy end to our story. Hundreds of letters have been travelling back and forth, first within Germany,  then between Canada and Biene’s hometown, then between Calgary and Didsbury, and last but by no means least again between Canada and Velbert. I published a few of these heart-felt letters to give my readers a sense of the nature of our most unusual epistolary relationship. On my next post I will attempt to throw some light on the manner in which Biene and I differ when confronted with complex issues in a time of crisis.



31 thoughts on “Chapter 35 of the Peter and Gertrud Klopp Story – Part I

  1. Letters can be very important and somehow help to contribute to the understanding of each other. Real life may be different, but letters can build up a solid basis for the relationship. I also think that getting through those years of separation together is a valuable experience.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are so right, Gerhard. Writing letters is an important aspect of getting to know each other. You elevate the relationship to a level for which there is little time later in the rough and tumble of daily living. On the flip side, there is the danger that one lacks the experience of being together in the real world of the small but significant daily challenges. Thank you, Gerhard, for taking the time to respond to our story!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I did not know you’d met so few times before she moved to Canada. Wow, you two certainly swept each other off your feet. But obviously you knew it was real love, not just infatuation. I look forward to learning more.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Really astonishing how you both could decide to marry after meeting only 6 times, dear Peter. It’s probably not so easy to suddenly stay together with somebody you don’t really know a lot. I’m looking forward to reading the next chapter. Have a nice day, hope spring is coming in Canada, too, kind regards Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was the correspondence that carried the weight of exploring each other and finding the certainty of true love apart from mere infatuation. Thank you, dear Mitza, for your words of appreciation! Sunny and mild weather is in the forecast for this neck of the woods. Hope all is well in Hamburg. Peter

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You did get to know each other through all the challenges of your getting together. There was definitely a persistence in both of you to continue the relationship in spite of all the obstacles. It was tested over a period of 4 years!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Es war schon mutig von Euch :Trotz der Riesenentfernung und nach nur ca.sechs Treffen ward Ihr ganz sicher, daß Ihr zusammenbleiben wolltet.Ich denke auch immer wieder darüber nach, wieviel Paare das wohl heute noch schaffen würden..? Natürlich unter Euren damaligen Bedingungen!!
    Ihr habt soviel Schwierigkeiten auf Euch genommen. Und es gab ja eigentlich gar keine Garantie dafür, daß alles gut gehen würde. Der Briefwechsel in alle Richtungen und zu vielen Verwandten muß einzigartig gewesen sein..

    Liebe Grüße an Dich und Biene!👋👋

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hallo liebe Edda! Vielen Dank für deine anteilnehmenden Worte! Kapitel 35 dient als kleine Pause vom hektischen Geschehen der letzen Ereignisse der Pankninschen Opposition. Da dachte ich, es wäre gut, einmal über unsere einzigartige Liebesgeschichte nachzudenken. Biene und ich stellen ein großes Paradox dar, wir sind in vielen Dingen uns sehr ähnlich, und doch auch wieder so grundverschieden, was ich in der nächsten Episode ein wenig erklären möchte.
      Heute waren Biene und ich bei schönsten Sonnenschein wieder beim Fotografieren an unserem geliebten See. Herzliche Grüße an dich und Dieter!


  6. Peter, back than letters to each other meant so much more, letters just connect so much on a deeper level. Yet realizing that it meant for you to be very patient filling the cap in between in doubts and worries for each other. After having met only for a few times your hearts were just meant to be for each other, your story is really incredible and very rare. The Universe is thank you for sharing an amazing love story.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You may have only met each other in person a few times, but all those letters were an excellent way to get to know the other person’s true personality. And obviously you each felt that the other was worth the effort, which I think bodes well for a future relationship together. It may not have been “boy meets girl,” but it still strikes me as true love! Thanks for sharing your story, Peter…I look forward to reading more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is true that we got to know each other in terms of our thoughts and feelings at a depth that one can only find by way of a very active correspondence. It created the bond that helped us weather problems later down the road of marital life. Thank you, Ann, for taking such an active interest in our story!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Danke Peter für die schönen Erzählungen ich habe hier in palmsprings mehr zeit zum lesen u ich geniesse es ist einfach klasse wie schön du das schilderst….freue mich schon auf den nächste Post spetzi Helmuth

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I certainly would look forward to your experiences with Biene and how you two, solved your differences, when confronted with complex issues in a time of crisis. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I must say, you surprised me when you mentioned that up to this point in the story, you and Biene had met on only six occasions. Still, given your many long and heartfelt letters, I daresay you each knew the other’s mind in great detail. I imagine there were many other couples at the time who met more regularly but never talked about anything much beyond trivialities.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There must be something powerful in the art of letter writing. You are right, Bun, that often, when couples meet, their conversations center around mere trivialities. One needs to guard against this danger, as it becomes a real threat to the stability and happiness in marriage. Thank you, Bun, for sharing your valuable insight with us!

      Liked by 1 person

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