While on the Monterrey Pier, Andria had a conversation with an elderly gentleman who was smiling down from the balcony of the historic Bruce Ariss Wharf Theater. The gentleman turned out to be Angelo Di Girolamo, the 92 year old proprietor of the theater. He invited us up in the theater, and we spent time chatting with Angelo and hearing his beautiful stories.
Angelo moved to Monterrey from Boston when he was 16, and worked on fishing boats before serving in WWII as an airplane mechanic. He returned from service and owned one of the original fresh seafood restaurants on the pier, before building the theater himself with the influential artist Bruce Ariss.
Talking with Angelo was fascinating—he is a positive, upbeat, and very encouraging and humorous person. His personality was bright and cheerful, and he very openly shared stories of his life with no hesitation. It was incredible to think that this guy has worked on the wharf for 76 years, has been married for 64 years, and has owned the theater now for 38 years. That kind of long term commitment seems so unheard-of in the world today.