It would be fair to say that Ken Edwards' eyes lit up when they first fell upon 18-year-old Janice Lett at a party in Auckland in 1958.
He shared his highly favourable first impression with a mate - "Who's that sheila over there? I wouldn't mind getting on to her," he said, but Jan wasn't quite as smitten.
She didn't recall her exact words last week, although she disputed Ken's version - "She told me to p... off" - but she did warm to the young man from Victoria Valley. It had taken her a couple of years to capitulate, she said, but surrender she did, and the couple were married at St Luke's Church, in Mt Albert, on April 29, 1961.
A couple of Saturdays ago they celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with family and friends, including Jan's matron of honour on 1961, Doreen White, and flowergirl Joanne Stone, at the Vintage Café in Kaitaia.
Ken had been on his way to a job as a well driller in Hamilton when he stopped off at the party, at a regular haunt of young men from the Far North, where there were always plenty of girls, many of whom, like Jan, played softball for the Farmer's Trading Co in the summer and basketball in the winter.
The home was owned by the parents of Doreen Simpson, who at that time was engaged to Des White, from Victoria Valley, who were married a short time later.
Meanwhile, drilling wells over a substantial geographical area didn't really suit Ken as a newly married man, or Jan. Nor did a year-long spell in the AFFCo cool star on the Auckland wharves, where everyone was on strike as often as not, and when Jan asked him if he would like to "go home," he didn't need a second invitation.
They duly returned to Kaitaia, Ken taking up a job with Kaitaia Transport. They also bought a house in Church Rd, built by Clyde and Janet Korach, for 3100 pounds ($6200). They still live there today, and while Jan reckons the house and half-acre are too big for them now, Ken will clearly take some persuading before he starts thinking of downsizing.
They raised four children - Donna, now living in Auckland) Corina (Vancouver), Jeffrey (just up the hill in Church Rd), and Tracey (Whangārei) in that house, the family now including seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Jan was a machinest when she met Ken, and continued to work from home after settling in Kaitaia, making everything from school, marching team and Kaitaia Municipal Brass Band uniforms to wedding dresses. She worked for the local clothing store Presswoods for a time, at Cawood's clothing factory in Empire St, alongside 30 others, for some years, and received a lot of work from Anna Yelavich.
She still keeps her hand in as a member of Far North Quilters.
And their recipe for a long and happy marriage?
"Don't argue," Jan said.
"You might get wild some times, but it should be over in two minutes."
Ken agreed, adding that there shouldn't be a boss in the family.
"If everyone works together things will go well," he said.