Cou­ple de­light in 60 years

Taupo Times - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - ROBERT STEVEN

‘‘It was lovely, I can't get over it.’’ Alma Katene

The se­cret to 60 years of happy mar­riage is tak­ing a mo­ment to lis­ten, a Taupo cou­ple say.

Alma and Gable Katene got mar­ried in 1956, at Kar­ioi, near Ohakune.

Now 81 and 80 years old, Gable said the cou­ple had known each other since they were chil­dren.

‘‘We went to school to­gether, to high school to­gether and then I went away and worked – shear­ing, scrub­cut­ting. But I re­turned to Kar­ioi, and we’ve been to­gether since then,’’ Gable said.

Alma said she and Gable had dis­agree­ments at times, but they al­ways make time to lis­ten to each other.

‘‘Pull to­gether. If you ar­gue, dis­cuss it – don’t go against each other,’’ she said. Gable agreed. ‘‘Nat­u­rally, in your life, you do have dis­agree­ments, but we talked it over, and it’s al­right

‘‘We had our dis­putes when we were younger, but as we got older, we linked more to­gether,’’ he said.

Spend­ing their evenings to­gether was an­other guid­ing prin­ci­ple, Alma said.

’’We never went out with­out one an­other,’’ she said.

Whether go­ing to the pub, a party, or a sports game, the Katenes both went along, glued at the hip.

‘‘We al­ways stuck to­gether, all the time, and you got used to that type of life. And you felt guilty if you didn’t do it,’’ Gable said.

‘‘We’ve al­ways had a lot of mates who we’d go and mix with, so it’s not a prob­lem.’’

Gable and Alma have six chil­dren, 21 grand­chil­dren and 24 great­grand­chil­dren.

The cou­ple raised their chil­dren in Master­ton, where Gable ran a sheep farm and Alma ran a restau­rant. They moved to Taupo in the 1980s. Gable worked for Fitcher’s Wood Pan­els and Alma ran the Taupo Bowl­ing Club kitchen un­til she re­tired.

Alma cred­ited her and Gable’s good health to giv­ing up smok­ing and drink­ing.

Alma and Gable’s chil­dren se­cretly or­gan­ised a party, with 120 friends, to com­mem­o­rate the cou­ple’s 60th an­niver­sary,

The pair were told noth­ing about the event, ex­cept to dress in white.

Alma said the evening at Taupo Golf Club on De­cem­ber 26 last year – cel­e­brated with 120 friends and fam­ily – was over­whelm­ing.

‘‘It was lovely, I can’t get over it,’’ she said.

‘‘The hall was all done out in white – the walls, the ceil­ing, the ta­bles.

‘‘I’ll never for­get it.’’

ROBERT STEVEN/FAIR­FAX NZ

Alma and Gable Katene say their 60-year mar­riage has been suc­cess­ful be­cause they’ve al­ways been will­ing to dis­cuss dis­agree­ments.

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