Borghild Bergstedt Paulsen
Jeg Elsker Deg
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On Labor Day, 1915, the local Norwegians had an outing in a grove in Murray. While I was there talking with my friend, Gudrun Kaalstad (later Ecker), I saw a young man across the grass talking, and I said, "Who is he?" She said, "That's Elder Abel Paulsen. He has just come home from a mission in Norway. I think he is from Northern Norway." Later in the day, a friend introduced us to each other. We played games and had a wonderful time as we always did when we gathered with the Norwegians. When Abel had to choose someone in a game he always chose me. However, we didn't start going steady until quite awhile later. Occasionally he would take me home from our Thursday Norwegian church meetings. I did see him and dance with him at some of the different parties we had. It wasn't until the next summer that he called me and wanted to take me to Saltair. I went to Saltair with him and wore a new dress I had made myself. There was something around the neck I didn't quite like about the dress, so I had a friend who was a seamstress fix it. When she saw it on me she said, "Well, if someone doesn't fall in love with you with this dress on, they will never fall in love with you." That's the dress I wore to Saltair, and I still have the dress. It's blue voile with small pink and white flowers on it. And I think he did fall in love with me in that dress. But we still didn't go steady until later in the fall. I had let him know that I wasn't interested in him.
We had our Norwegian reunion during October General Conference, 1916. Four of us girls went together. There was a place for the four of us to sit together if two girls sitting in the row would move over two chairs. They refused to do this, so we split up, two on either side of them. One of these girls who refused was a girl who had come over from Norway and was in love with him Abel. She refused because she knew Abel liked me. When she refused to accommodate us, it made me angry. I decided that if he asked me to dance I would accept every invitation. Sure enough he asked me for every dance, which I accepted. The girl was plenty heartsick. She never even got a dance from him. Of course, later after we were married, she went back to Norway and married a fine man and had a nice family.
I had a date with Abel to go to the Conference session the next morning on Sunday. After the meeting we took a hike up to Ensign Peak together with several other friends. We then had dinner and went to the afternoon session. Then we went to the Scandinavian Conference at 4 o'clock in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square. We went steady from then on and decided to get married that year. He didn't want to wait, because he was 32. So we set our wedding date for the 14th of December, 1916. In November I had an operation on my nose for a deviated septum, which set me behind a little in school, and so I dropped out of school before our marriage.
We rented a home on Blain Avenue between 14th and 15th East. My sister, Hildeborg, became very sick and felt that she would not get well staying in the home where she was working. I told her that she and I could move into our home on Blaine Avenue. Abel and I had our furniture already ordered, so we called and had it delivered two weeks earlier than planned; then Hildeborg and I moved in.
The day we were married, I left home on the street car and Abel met me in front of the Walker Bank Building on Second South and Main Street. He came down from Canyon Road in City Creek Canyon where he was boarding. We had to be in the Temple at 7 a.m. This day there was one of the worst snow storms I have ever seen (Norway included). This was a real severe winter. It started snowing on the 10th of October, and we still had a patch of snow on the north side of the house until May. I remember several times that winter, when the street cars couldn't run on 15th East, that we walked on skis to town.
When we got out of the Temple, after being there all day, it was pitch dark. We hadn't had anything to eat, and we were plenty hungry. We went into a little bakery on South Temple and had a bowl of soup that cost us 5¢ apiece. We then took the street car home. There was Hildeborg with a good dinner fixed and about 14 people waiting. She was an excellent cook then, as now. We had spring chicken and Brussel sprouts in December. It was the first time Abel had tasted Brussel sprouts, and he really enjoyed them. He loved them as long as he lived.
Our house was a beautiful five-room brick home with a sleeping porch. Hildeborg stayed with us all that winter. We had friends, including old boy friends, coming to visit us practically every night of the week. Far had taken sick on his mission, and the doctors had told him if he was to get well, he had to be in bed every night at 10 o'clock, which he faithfully observed (even when he was courting me). The friends lingered on even after Far had gone to bed.
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