HOUSTON—One day more than two decades ago, an accountant looking for new clients walked into a small bookstore in the Montrose area and struck up a conversation with the owner.
“Apparently, there was some chemistry,” one of their friends recalled.
They were both quiet, shy people. But soon enough they started dating, eventually moving into the same home and raising three children together.
“I mean, it was just such a nice match,” said Sue Lovell, a longtime friend of the couple. “They complemented each other so well that I think probably everybody thought this was something that was going to last a long time.”
Today the bookstore is a music shop specializing in vintage vinyl records. The accountant runs a small but successful financial services company. And the former bookstore owner is the mayor of Houston.
And now, Mayor Annise Parker and her longtime companion Kathy Hubbard have become the highest-profile same-sex couple in Houston.
“This is a very happy day for us,” Parker said in a written statement. “We have had to wait a very long time to formalize our commitment to each other.”
Houston’s first couple married in a small ceremony at a private home in Palm Springs, California, one of the states that – unlike Texas – has essentially legalized gay marriage. They wrote their own vows for a ceremony presided over by Rev. Paul Fromberg, the same-sex marriage partner of the mayor’s political consultant, Grant Martin.
“I am privileged to now be the wife of the woman I have loved for more than two decades,” Parker posted on Twitter. “I couldn’t be happier.”