Adeline Anderson of South Farmingdale recalls when she met her husband, Lawrence.
I began working as a seasonal employee at Jones Beach State Park in the summer of 1999, when I was 16. Lawrence started his job at Jones Beach in 2000, when he was 18. We didn’t meet until I was transferred to his area the next year. My name was Adeline Scibelli.
Lawrence was a good guy, very genuine. He took me under his wing and showed me how to acclimate to the new area. We became fast friends. We made each other laugh all the time.
I was from Seaford. Lawrence lived in the Bronx. At the end of that summer, I went away to college in Connecticut; we did not keep in contact.
In the summer of 2002, I returned to Jones Beach. Lawrence had become a foreman who had me and others on our crew do the most difficult and dirtiest of jobs, including cleaning bathrooms and picking up garbage bags that we hurled onto a truck he drove along the beach. I was not always happy about it but knew I was in good hands, and we had fun working on any task. When I returned to college again, we kept in contact.
Each summer we’d work together at the beach. As the years went on, our relationship turned into a deeper friendship. We would often call each other to talk about life, get advice or just say “Hi.” When I studied in Spain or traveled to El Salvador, we stayed connected. I couldn’t imagine not having him in my life. Lawrence became my sounding board and a voice of reason. We were best friends.
In 2005, I graduated from college and returned to Long Island. While studying for my master’s degree at Hofstra University, I worked year-round as a part-time park maintenance employee at Jones Beach with Lawrence.
Around 2007, our relationship began to change again. Neither one of us remembers when we started dating. Once we got together, we realized that our friendship was the foundation that helped us to build this incredible relationship.
Our best dates were those spent at Lawrence’s apartment in the Bronx watching shows on HBO, hanging out on City Island, or taking random trips to Manhattan.
We share a love of traveling and exploring new places and cultures. We try to visit a new place every year. One of our favorite trips was to Belize, where we went cave tubing, then went to Roatan, Honduras, where we stood on the highest point.
In 2014, Lawrence began to play a joke on me. He would pull out a ring box and ask me to marry him. It was an empty box! My strong Long Island Italian personality came out. He thought this was funny, so he would randomly pull out the box and propose. My response each time was the same: “See me when there’s something inside the box!”
This game went on until October when he casually said, “Hey will you marry me?” I replied, “When are you going to learn?” He got down on one knee and asked again. My response this time was, “For real?”
He laughed and said, “Yes! Of course!" (And he produced a ring in a new box.)
We were married on Aug. 20, 2017, at Crescent Beach Club in Bayville. Our wedding completely encompassed our relationship. It was the most fun and beautiful day!
After being married almost two years, I could not imagine doing this crazy thing called life and "adulting" with anyone else.
Lawrence is a full-time state parks employee at Jones Beach. I teach English as a second language at Baldwin High School.
— With Virginia Dunleavy
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