The Second-Best Wife

In the year 532, Emperor Justinian I of the Byzantine Empire and his wife Theodora were in trouble. Rioters had rampaged through the capital for days, leaving burning neighborhoods behind them, and now they’d proclaimed a rival emperor, turning the riots into a full-blown revolt. Justinian and his advisors prepared to flee the city, preferring exile and an unknown fate to dying at the hands of the rioters, but Empress Theodora proclaimed that she would not leave. (In a History Channel depiction, this occurs in dramatic fashion on the docks as the men are boarding ships.) The men were shamed or otherwise persuaded into fighting for the city and were victorious. Justinian remained emperor for another 33 years.

Theodora displayed incredible courage and/or wisdom, but for me, she can only be the second-best wife. My wife will always be first. She stood beside me for three years in Catfish City while its residents tried to put me in my grave with their slings and poison arrows. She followed me to the USA, facing winter temperatures below anything imaginable in her home country, an uncertain financial future, and the inscrutable bureaucracy of the US immigration system. She supports me every day in little ways that are too personal to share here, and I can’t imagine how I could accomplish anything without her. Sorry, Empress Theodora, you will never be number one.

Here is a picture from our wedding in South Africa:
18.01.11 154 25


  1. Nice sable fountain. Very nice looking couple too.

    1. Thanks! We got married at Sun City, we have lots of wedding photos with beautiful backgrounds, and some great honeymoon photos as well, although most of those are of animals and scenery, not us.

  2. Wow she’s beautiful! Lucky, lucky man there!

    Though I think second best has to go to Queen Ahotep; her husband died during a brutal war against the invading Hyksos but she carried on, lead her people until their son was old enough to lead. After that, she rode out and crushed a rebellion against her son and won the Flies of Valour! The Ancient Egyptian ladies were bosses!

    1. Thanks for the compliment. I didn’t know the details about Ahotep – I didn’t even know so many details were known from Hyksos times

  3. Congrats. A lovely couple. Many many years of happiness.

    1. Thanks. Marrying her was definitely the best decision I ever made.

      1. Congrats to both.

  4. […] Because for me, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.  It was the year I married my wonderful wife, and also the year we moved to Catfish City.  I was so busy that year, I’m pretty sure I […]

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