Share Your Story

Throughout history stories of romantic meetings are chronicled and passed down through the ages.

Now it's your turn to share your story. We want to know,
So... How Did You Meet Anyway?

Monday, December 31, 2012

Finding That Perfect Ride

"I was at my first real college party. I was out of my dorm room with friends I had only just met that week, at a party being thrown by upper-class-men junior boys. I repeat: upper-class-men boys. Yeah, I know, it was pretty awesome. I didn’t have parents waiting for me to get home, I hadn’t had to create an elaborate rouse to allay suspicions of my whereabouts, and I wasn’t trying to pretend the drink in my hand was just a diet coke. I felt like a real college student. An adult, if you will.
There was only one thing that can put a damper on a perfect evening like this: your ride telling you she’s ready to got home. I had an immediate pang of disappointment since I was definitely not ready to leave yet. The booze was just starting to hit me and I had lots of people surrounding me and wanting to talk. I belonged, and I wanted to stay. “Okay,” she said, “We’ll just find you another ride home.”

Saturday, December 8, 2012

It Just Feels Right

As my parents put me on a plane for Dartmouth College in September of 1993, my mother’s parting words were “Anne, stay away from the senior boys…”  I smiled, gave them both a hug, and determinedly walked aboard the aircraft ready to start my life as a college student.
Six weeks later, I looked across the room at a fraternity party and I knew that my world was about to change. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dancing the Flamenco

Somehow, we are fond of naming the stages in our relationship after certain kinds of dance, even if we are not good dancers at all. And although our marriage is certainly not a walk in the park, I am glad that my dance partner tries his best to stay and make our dance lively and smooth, especially that we now have children and are dancing the flamenco.

I was perfectly happy and contented when I met the man who was to be my husband. I was joyfully serving in various ministries at my new church and  I was determined to enjoy and make every moment of my single-hood worthwhile. Although we belonged to the same church, and had noticed each other’s presence, it was not until about a year later that we were formally introduced to one another. We were both attending a small party for church volunteers and happened to be on the same table. His sister introduced us, but we never really talked. That was August 2001.
Months passed before we had the opportunity to get to know each other. Our respective ministries happened to co-sponsor the nightly church service (Simbang Gabi in Filipino, literally) during that same year’s Christmas season. Their ministry was in charge of the music, while ours was in charge of the rest of the program. After the service, our groups agreed to go out for some coffee, so that we could all get to know each other more, especially that we belonged to the same church and our ministries were closely related. He was with the Youth Ministry while I was with the Yuppies Ministry. Members of their group would become part of our group eventually, so it was imperative that we try to get to know each other. That was the start of our friendship.

Friday, November 16, 2012

 Life Is Good
I was newly 19, had just moved to Maine to join my family who had upped and transplanted themselves there from New Mexico, and it was the smack-dab middle of winter.
I loved my family, but didn't have anyone my age to converse with; I almost paid a waiter at a restaurant to be my friend.  Seriously.  I was desperate for some peers!  I had no car, and until I started subbing at the school my dad taught at, no job.  The mail came one day...that was a turning point.  My grandmother in NM had heard of a church not too far from us that was a start-up, and I was greatly intrigued. We had struck out with churches to date, so we were willing to try anything.

We started out for the church one Sunday morning in March, but we had to cross country roads to get there...when will this town pop up?  Where are we?  Ahhhh!  "Let's take this opportunity to go for a Sunday drive", I thought.  I was nervous and it appeared that we weren't anywhere near town...let's just forget it.

The town finally did the church, but we were late.  I despise being late.  Sigh.  Especially somewhere new...especially in a crowd, because doesn't everyone turn their heads in curiosity when you walk in?  Of course they do!  But up the stairs we trudged; we might as well sneak in the back.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Monkey Love :)

Scott and I worked together at an Internet Media company, Gorilla Nation Media (Hence the Monkey Love) in Los Angeles. The first moment I saw him (when he’d come in to interview), I thought he was very handsome. Scott will tell you that he doesn’t remember seeing me that day, but he does remember me coming into the HR office on his first day and taking his breath away…..

After that, we both caught glances of each other everyday and he finally invited me and some other co-workers out for happy hour. When I got to the bar, we ended being the only people there. We laughed and talked and I knew that night that he was, and is, a special man. We became fast friends, lunch buddies and eventually began our courtship. We continued to share many laughs, conversations and understanding – something that we both needed.

After a trip to Sacramento for a holiday party, love just bloomed.
We got engaged Christmas 2010 and we will be getting married October 2012.

Aint love grand???

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Meeting My Superhero

Okay, so meeting my masked Superhero:
We were both living in Twentynine Palms, CA. David had just returned from his second deployment in Iraq, and we were both going through divorces. The day before Halloween I was excited that my costume had arrived, but I had no where to wear it,and my neighborhood doesn't get a lot of trick or treaters. I posted this as my status on My Space.
A little while later I got a message from a guy asking if I'd like to come to his Halloween party. I was wary about going to a random party and besides, I didn't have a car to get anywhere!
We exchanged a few more emails while he tried to convince me that he would pick me up and not leave my side through the night. (One of my bigger concerns... being left in the room with strangers who all knew each other). The next day, I agreed and within hours, he was on the way.
I was nervous while I got ready. He texted that he was outside. I opened the door a bit and grabbed my shoes and purse before coming out. I was trying so hard not to giggle as this guy in a superhero outfit and mask walked up to me. He, in turn, had a cabaret dancer walking towards him. We introduced ourselves, and being the gentleman that he is, he walked to the truck door and opened it for me.When we reached his house, he got out of the truck, and did the same. I was impressed, to say the least. Since then, we've been together a year and a half and haven't spent a day apart up until this deployment. When he returns, we'll have been together two years and will be planning our wedding for the following Halloween.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Marry Me Fox

Ian and I met five years ago, when we started working together.
We were both single, and didn't know each other very well at all.  My boyfriend at the time (now ex, obviously) was very immature, and I would wonder why I couldn't find a responsible, mature, funny guy who was thoughtful and romantic. Ian was my go-to guy for advice throughout that whole terrible relationship. Of course it all ended pretty badly, and Ian was there to cheer me up.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

When You Know...You Know

Our story can be told one of two ways. The sweet and condensed version is that we met through mutual friends and the rest is history. Short and simple. But who likes short and simple?!
The extended (and much more interesting) version includes Eeyore in a hookah lounge, Facebook-stalking, and a grand scheme. It was late October 2009, and I headed downtown to have a couple drinks with a group of friends after a comedy show. In this group of friends was Danny's best friend who was dating one of my great friends, and we all ended up at a hookah lounge together. Our group grabbed a table outside and sat back to chat and enjoy a couple drinks.

Being that it was late October, apparently people were practicing for Halloween the next weekend…because in walked a guy in an Eeyore costume with a cute little pink-bowed tail.
The Eeyore-clad homeboy stood right in front of our table with that tail swingin’ just within distance of me. And just like Eeyore wants to be noticed, I was trying to get Danny to notice me, and in a moment of full (im)maturity I yanked on Eeyore’s tail.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Meant to Be

I peek out the window and note my tired reflection.

My hair, loosely ponytailed.
My eyes, darkly circled.
My face, washed bare.
Stark tree branches scrape against the house. My flickering screen mirrors the feeling.

I tuck my knees beneath me. The chair is hard, my back is sore. I lean in close- watching, waiting, ready.
Finally, I maneuver the fickle cursor to a chat room where strangers hide behind avatars that aren't their own. Realities in their backgrounds, escape at their fingertips.
I was twenty-two years old, a first year teacher by day, a graduate student by night, and a thesis writer by even later at night.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Heart to Heart

I started teaching at Bow High School in the fall of 2009 and Bob was one of the first people I met.
He is the AV and tech guy, so I knew we'd be working together when it came time for my concerts. We got along right from the start and often hung out in my office, just chatting and laughing. He has a great sense of humor and we just clicked, though at that time I was thinking of him as just a friend. The more time we spent together, the more we just liked hanging out. By mid-October I found myself making excuses to go to his office and finding ways that I could see him throughout the day. At that point I realized that I really liked him and I thought he might like me too, but I wasn't sure. He was actually going in for open heart surgery at the beginning of November and he decided to take a leap and ask me out 2 days before his surgery. We went out to dinner and talked for hours. He told me how much he liked me and how he had liked me for months. He had been asking around to other teachers at school to find out if I was married or if I had a boyfriend - he was very relieved when he found out neither was true. His surgery was a huge success and hearing his voice when he called me from the hospital was the best thing I've ever heard. I always tell him that they opened up his heart so I could climb in. We got engaged at the end of March and our wedding is October 2, 2010 in New Hampshire.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Thelma and Larry

I had just graduated from high school.   My parents let me use the car to go to a drive-in movie with my high school friends.   We had so much fun that night that we wanted to do it again. My birthday was coming up in July, so we were planning to go out and celebrate my birthday.  

Well, I had heard a rumor in the church we attended, that there was a family moving to Arizona that had 10 children. I was excited about meeting some new friends.   

On June 20th, we had a Sunday school picnic, and this new family had just arrived in Tucson, so someone invited them to come. The family arrived with the 5 out of 10 children who had moved out with them.  Our youth group spent the afternoon together and later went to a swimming party at someone’s home. One of the new family members came along. This was the man that I would someday marry.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Timing Is Everything

“Life is Long:  timing is everything, even if it takes awhile”
If my husband and I had met when we were young, we wouldn’t have paid much attention to each other. I was a goody-two-shoes Dean’s List student at an Ivy League school. At the same age, G. had hair down to his shoulders and played keyboard in a local rock band that is still well known in this town to this day.
We are both pianists: I started at the age of three, trained the Lechetiszky method by a renowned Russian pianist, Professor Basil Toutorsky who had 22 pianos in a mansion on 16th Street in Washington. G. was virtually self-taught, went to the Berkley School of Music for awhile and played rock and roll, jazz and rhythm and blues. He didn’t get interested in classical music until he was in his 20’s and then shifted his focus to the complete works of a 19th century French composer named Charles Valentin Alkan.
Alkan’s piano works are so difficult that very few pianists can play them.
This is all by way of describing how different and how similar we are at the same time. We both love pianos. We courted to Alkan’s music. And we met over a piano.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sticking It Out Through Good Times and Bad

One question we have been asked which I find to be a little complicated to answer is “How did we meet?”  Well it goes a little something like this.  We went to school together.  The End. 

No really we did go to school together.  Even though we lived near each other we went to different middle schools but we went to the same Jr. High School.  It was there we had our first encounter, one we wouldn’t even realize till after we were together and looking at old pictures she had from school that she took and found one of me.  It just so happened I was walking across the field at school one day and someone called my name I turned to look and “snap” my picture was taken; frozen in time, never to see that picture again, until approximately 21 years later. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Don't Be One

I was a sophomore at King's College in Wilkes-Barre PA and Nikki was a freshman at Wilkes University, which was right down the street.  I wasn't necessarily looking for a life partner that Saturday night, like most college kids I was just looking to throw back a few and have a good time.  Friends of mine lived at a place called Murder House.  It was a notorious party place and it helped that I knew all the guys that lived there.  For some reason, that night was particularly crowded so I parked myself, with my roommate behind the bar.  A pretty important spot because A) we were in charge of music and B) other people had to get us our drinks because we couldn't get out.  These circumstances led to a game of asshole starting up.  A classic college drinking game.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Everything Happens For a Reason

I was two years old when my parents bought their house.  My mom was pregnant with my little sister and we needed more space to accommodate the growing family (I would eventually become the second oldest of four girls).  The neighbors to our right were a smaller family, a mom and two boys a few years older than me.  Their house was identical on the inside, same setup, just different finishes and color schemes.  Being next door was like one of those strange dreams where you’re standing in your living room, only it’s not really your living room, but it’s supposed to be.
We all became very close very quickly and soon enough, my sisters and I could be found in the front or backyard playing bloody murder and kick the can with the neighbors every day of the week.  In the winter, we’d build snow forts and go ice-skating and my dad would be in the background taking home video which, at the time, we had NO idea how fun it would be to watch later.
My whole adolescence, I had a crush on the younger of the two brothers (he was 3 years older than me).  I would knock on his door when I knew he was home, and ask to borrow eggs or sugar and tell him I was baking cookies, just to see him. He’d hand over the eggs and always replied with “only if I get some of those cookies when you’re done!” He never did get any cookies though cause I was never actually baking.  There is also still a heart that I drew in my closet in my parents’ house that says ‘I love Scott, borrowed 2 eggs from him today, dated 1992’.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Some Enchanted Evening

On a remarkably warm fall evening in October of 2004, I decided that I could get away with one more outing in flip-flops (a dangerous choice for Minnesota weather).  It was the night of the Ike Reilly Assassination concert, and I was giddy with excitement.  Ike's band has a distinctly American, gritty eclectic sound, and I had harassed five or six good friends to come with me to the show.  The band was playing at a hole-in-the-wall bar in St. Paul, known for its great sound and interesting clientele.  More than anything, I was looking forward to seeing a band I love with friends I love.

That night, the concert did not disappoint except for the fact that they didn't arrive on stage until almost midnight.  No matter, though, by that point I was pleasantly buzzed and was singing my heart out, blissfully unaware of the presence of my future husband.  As it so happened, he was standing next to me.  During the evening, we had noticed one another across a crowded room (just like the old cliche says), and apparently, I smiled at him.  Later, he realized with disappointment that I tend to smile at everyone without realizing it, but by that point, it didn't matter anymore.  Somehow, throughout the show, we had ended up next to one another, at which point my friends magically disappeared.  I felt happy and relaxed and open to chatting with him because the show was almost over and I knew I wasn't looking to meet anyone.  So there was no pressure.  Nothing could possibly happen.

After a few pleasantries about the band and some basic chit-chat, my focal point was back to the stage where Ike was swaying drunkenly and dangerously close to the edge of the stage.  It was one of the last songs of the night, "Commie Drives a Nova" and Erik was about to make his move.  He cautiously asked me if I would like to get together sometime, to which I replied a carefree, "Sure!"  In my mind, there was no way anything would come of this.  He was very cute, but probably not my type, and I had big plans to go overseas soon.  There was no place or time for something to develop.  As the music died down and the bar began to clear out, he handed me his phone so I could input my number.  (I found out later that he was too nervous to plug in the numbers himself.)  We exchanged smiles, said good night, and went our separate ways.

Two days, later he called me for a date.  I accepted and plans were made to meet for a drink two nights later.  As the day of the date grew closer, I grew nervous.  I frantically told my friends, "Forget it.  I'm canceling!  There's no point.  I'm going to an international job fair in a few months!  I don't want to meet anyone.  He's not my type!"  
My friends vehemently argued with me.  "You are NOT canceling.  He IS your type! It's not going to hurt to have one drink with him." Finally, I relented with a bitter, "Fine. But I'm not wearing anything cute. I'm dressing down!"

I drove with apprehension to the date.  I could barely recall what he looked like, and I was positive that he seemed preppier than I would prefer.  As I approached the restaurant where I was meeting him, I saw him standing outside.  And I swooned.  I mean, literally swooned.  I didn't know a person could really swoon.  He was so handsome, and contrary to my previous beliefs, he appeared to be exactly my type. After an awkward hello, we made our way inside where we proceeded to have a date that was straight out of the movies.  We had so much to talk about and so much chemistry, that neither of us wanted the date to end.  I remember that night as I drove home that I had the sensation of falling.  And it was oh so scary and yet so wonderful at the same time.  

As we had more and more dates and our relationship grew, we saw Ike many more times together.  And at each show, we would have the sweet sensation of remembrance as we saw each other out of our peripheral vision, similar to that first night.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

I Landed the "It" Girl

I remember the night I first checked Katie out, sitting on a curb, waiting for a bus to take us to a party. Surrounded by her flock of gorgeous friends, delicate arms draped over legs that went for miles, she asked me, “What’s your major?” I could tell instantly from her blond hair, blue eyes, and swimsuit model body she was the type of girl who’d ‘just want to be friends' with me. Her type dated muscle men with cars and bank accounts, not squishy poets into social justice. Long legs, blond, and gorgeous: Way out of my league.

Told her my major and engaged in polite conversation with the relaxed assurance that I didn’t have a chance. It’s easy to be suave when you know you’re just a bat boy for the major league hitters. We went to the party and she didn't talk to me all night, but got close on the dance floor with a gelled hair meat head wearing a ribbed tank-top and gold chains. Her roommate (thicker around the middle and much more the type I’d have a shot with) drank a bottle of Bacardi and gyrated with enthusiasm while I tried to escape her earnest clutches. After the roommate passed out on the dance floor, I carried her considerable and comatose frame to my friend’s car. Katie had to sit on my lap for the drive home. Thank God for my friend’s two door Japanese rust bucket.

Got a kiss that night from her (Katie, not the roommate with a nice personality) and spent the night in her dorm room listening to the roommate snore in the bunk bed above. I crept out as the sun was rising. I was in a failing relationship at the time and felt like a dirt bag for kissing Katie underneath the roommate. Sure that I was going to be the cause of their friendship ending, I took my leave and didn’t call. Big mistake.

After the party that night, our two social circles merged and Katie was at every party, every group hang-out, and every time I saw her I acted like nothing had happened…sweaty palms were the only evidence. When she showed at a party, fine female friends in toe, I’d hug all the other ladies, kiss them on the cheek even, and when Katie’s turn for greeting came I’d raise my hand and slap her five like she was my little brother. I was playing it cool. In a new relationship with a girl in my league and, after all, I didn’t want the “it” girl to know I wanted to marry her. I’d tell my friends, “I know Katie’s the coolest girl, she’d never…(fill in the blank with whatever weekly drama my ice queen girlfriend was stirring up).”

A year of these projections later, a good friend of mine said, “How do you know Katie’s coolest girl in the world? She doesn’t even know you…not really! She thinks you’re just a friend--nothing more. Trust me. She’s way out of your league.”

I am a man of faith and instinct. At 19, I knew Katie would be the perfect wife, if only I could somehow reverse the earth’s rotation to create a world where I’d be elevated into the exclusive club that dated über hot chicks. Somehow get beyond the velvet rope, distract the bouncer at the door long enough to sneak into the elite oasis of fine ladies where Katie was a card carrying member.

I didn’t know it at the time, but she felt the same way about me. She took my “playing it cool” for “too cool for you”. She thought I wasn’t interested. She got the courage up to tell our friend she liked me. She told him I should ask her out on a date. I played it cool for a week, trying to come up with a special plan and she called my friend again to inquire what was taking so long.

On our first date, after a conversation that flowed like we had known each other all our lives, I took her hand in mine, and tilted her chin towards my lips. “I’m so sorry for not calling you back that first night. I’m such an idiot. I’ve been waiting a year and a half to kiss you again.”

After 9 years of marriage I still feel like someone who reversed the earth’s rotation, tricked the bouncer and snuck into the private club. Every morning when I wake up next to Katie, I look at her and think, “I landed the ‘it’ girl”. I tell her all the time. She proves my 19 year old instincts right every day…she is the coolest broad on earth and every crazy prediction I made, before I even knew her middle name, is true.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Follow Your Heart

 Ding dong!  The front doorbell rang.  I rushed to open the door.  This was the first time I met Marcus.  He came to England to travel for a couple of years and arrived at our house to meet up with his uncle and aunt visiting us from South Africa.  I was living with my parents at the time in their lovely English house with my son Josh.  We also recently immigrated to the United Kingdom from South Africa.

Our first meeting was spent sightseeing in Windsor with the family, chatting and drinking coffee.  We kept in contact and for the next 3 months spent hours on the phone chatting.  Christmas arrived and my family was heading to Torquay, Devon on holiday.  My mom (maybe with alternative motives) invited Marcus to join us.  Her reasoning, “the poor guy is alone in a strange country with no family to celebrate Christmas.” 

We had a great time together on holiday, exploring new places and getting to know each other.  The more time we spent together the more we enjoyed each other’s company.  The day we returned from holiday was cold and frosty.  We lit the fire in the lounge and sat right in front of it as we waited for the rest of the house to warm up.  I still remember how we started playing “20 questions” learning more about each other.  Every question was a revelation of something we had in common or liked in each other. 

There was a growing affection, as we laughed, shared and chatted together.  And then on New Year’s Eve, at a house party, as the fireworks were exploding outside, Marcus kissed me.  It was a quick, small peck of a kiss.  But it hit me straight in the heart and it sealed the deal.
The next three months we were head-over heels in-love.  We didn’t have a lot of money, so we spent most of the time at my parent’s house, chatting into the early hours of the morning, drinking coffee, cooking together.  Marcus started to show his interest in me to my parents, by offering to work in the garden and even cooked a mother’s day meal for my mom! 

In April we went on holiday together to Athens, Greece.  It was our first trip together.  We both love travelling.  The experience of travelling together was exhilarating and I knew that I wanted to explore more interesting places with this man.

Marcus had to return to South Africa for 6 weeks after our holiday together.  It was very hard to be apart and we missed each other terribly.  But something else started happening in my heart.  I was afraid to commit.  When Marcus returned to the UK, I was suddenly cold towards him.  Try as he may, I continued to turn a cold shoulder.  In my own mind I was struggling with past fears of rejection and feelings of being unworthy.  The poor man could not understand my reactions towards his advances.  This continued for 5 months.  

In desperation Marcus contacted his father in South Africa.  “I know she is the girl I want to marry, but she is pushing me away and I just can’t understand why!”  He told his dad.  The wise reply from his dad was, “Stay another month and continue to push the door.  If by the end of this month nothing happens come back to South Africa and put it behind you.”

Well at the same time, my heart was wrestling with my head.  I loved him and enjoyed spending time with him, but something in me stopped me from wanting to make a commitment.  I in turn consulted my mom and she encouraged me to be open and allow time to show what could grow out of a relationship.  I listened.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Blockbuster Romance

In the spring of 2007, Matthew moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan after having lived in Sweden for five years and set up a profile on The Hunt. Wayne, who liked Matthew’s chest shot, sent him a message.

Despite the reputation of the site, the two had a relatively innocent conversation.

Matthew was not out at the time and had just gotten out of a four-year relationship with a woman in Sweden. They were planning to get married but she didn’t want to come to the States.

After two months of chatting, Wayne wanted to meet Matthew in person but Matthew was reluctant since he didn’t know what to expect. Wayne was still able to convince him to come over to his place.

Matthew was pleasantly surprised by what he saw when Wayne came to the door, as he had exceeded expectations.

They went to Blockbuster to rent a movie but it took Matthew a very long time to pick one and he wound up selecting the very date-friendly Apocalypto. Wayne had seen it before but for some reason did not object to the selection.

While watching the movie, Wayne expressed his interest by putting a hand on Matthew’s leg. Matthew was similarly interested but wasn’t ready to let his guard down. He let it down enough for the two of them to start   making out during the movie, which was fine since Matthew was not interested in watching any more of it.

Matthew and Wayne stayed in touch with each other throughout the summer.

That fall, Wayne called and told Matthew that they needed to talk. Matthew was very much into Wayne by this time and afraid that Wayne was going to break up with him.

Instead, Matthew showed up to Wayne’s apartment – where he sat Matthew down on his couch, got down on one knee and proposed that they date each other exclusively.

In 2009, Matthew and Wayne moved in together.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Hey Bike Guy!

It was May 2008 and I had just finished my first year in the classroom when I got it into my head to go on a bike trip. A long bike trip, from NYC to Chicago. So I trained and set off in August, really without too much of a plan. I had planned out where I wanted to end up each day, but had made no arrangements for actually staying anywhere. The first two nights of shady motel and illegal camping were adventurous, but not restful, so I decided to couchsurf, which I had done before both as guest and host. The third night of the trip, I found myself in Binghamton, NY, staying with a funny, strange guy about my age.

So he says he'll meet me at his house at such and such time and I'm there waiting for him. He shows up about an hour late with three people other people in the car: a cute girl in the front seat and two other guys in the back. It's the girl who sees me, leans out the window and yells, "Hey bike guy!" Right away I notice that she is really pretty, but a pretty girl in a car with three guys probably equals boyfriend, so I say nothing. Introductions, but pretty girl leaves with the two guys who aren't my host. It turns out my host and another guy are her cousins; the other is into guys. About two hours and six beers later, I'm at the house playing chess when she comes back. We chat, but still out of the loop and not wanting to embarrass myself by asking, I decide to play cool. She says she's moving to NYC in the fall and could we meet up sometime. I say of course, hoping for it but expecting nothing.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

There's A Very Nice Boy...

In this week's Summer Re-Run selection, the author of multiple women's fiction books,Shobbhan Bantwal, shares her unusual "how we met" story. Read about this arranged marriage that resulted in love, partnership, and commitment.Ms. Bantwell has also recently published a new book...just in time for a fun summer read.

THE RELUCTANT MATCHMAKER is the sixth "Bollywood in a Book" by Shobhan

There's A Very Nice Boy...

Imagine meeting your future husband two days before you become engaged to marry him. If that is the stuff of storybooks, then I should consider myself the heroine of the story.
My husband and I met in India two days before we were engaged. And ten days later we were married. No, it was not love at first sight, and it was certainly not a shotgun wedding. What we had was an old-fashioned arranged marriage. In a conservative culture like ours, back in the early 1970s, marriage by arrangement was the norm and not an aberration.
It is not so much the quick engagement and wedding that seem to fascinate the average American but the idea of marrying a stranger...

Saturday, July 14, 2012

A Bastille Day Story

La Fête Nationale

  "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" was the year 1789 and the liberation of the Bastille began the bloody French Revolution. In Charles Dicken's brilliant and exciting Tale of Two Cities, Lucie Manette and Charles Darnay survive the wicked revenge of Madame Defarge to have a happily ever after marriage. This week's story demonstrates that although Bastille Day may still have its pitfalls, courage and perseverance can ultimately result in that fairy tale ending we all seek.  
Summer 1991, mid-June night:
A friend and I sit on my porch on a warm summer night.We are drinking cold beer and eating warm tortillas full of beans and spicy rice.It is a perfect night.But I need to leave.A promise to go to a barbecue fulfilled.The barbecue, hosted by a dear college friend, Leslee, could not be blown off.At the barbecue after a bit I sat in the kitchen and had a long, comfortable and intelligent talk with a super woman named Robin. I'd never met her before; at the end of the night I figured I'd never see her again. And it's not what you think.
Bastille Day, July 14, 1991:

Saturday, July 7, 2012

And The Rest Is History

I was still nursing my wounds from a previous relationship's break up after six months. I told me friends I was planning a "wedding-not-marriage" because I wanted the fun of having a wedding, but not the risk of opening my heart to hurt again. I went to a student mission conference with some friends (including my former boyfriend), dead set against meeting anyone. I was there for the conference, NOT to pick up a guy. The second day of the conference, I attended a workshop session on a country I had visited two years prior. I put my booklet down before lunch to save a seat for myself, then went to eat. When I came back to the room after lunch, my booklet had been moved and the room was completely full except for one seat in the back, which was two seats away from my good friend Rusty. I figured the guy sitting next to Rusty could move down and I could sit next to him (Rusty). Unbeknown to me, Rusty had met Elias the night before playing basketball and thought "he's going to be Ali's next boyfriend."

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

From a Little Spark Bursts a Mighty Flame

I met Sammuel online. In retrospect, I suppose that we were attracted to one another because we had a lot in common, particularly our love for the arts. He was a sound artist, and at the time, I was writing and illustrating children’s stories. Our emails to one another were incredibly sweet, and I liked him very much. I suspected he felt the same about me.

After several weeks of cyber flirting, and a few warmhearted phone calls, it was time to meet. We chose a seafood restaurant on the water that had great outdoor seating (the perfect summer spot). The restaurant was near to his studio, and in an up-and-coming artist’s neighborhood. Our first encounter was picture perfect. Conversation flowed beautifully between us, and we had a great time together, but we lacked something. I guess you could say we just didn’t have that particular spark that triggers flames of love. I told myself that perhaps the sparks would come later, and I agreed to meet him again.

Our second date wasn’t exactly a date. He, and a group of other emerging artists, had an opening show at an art gallery/bar/restaurant, and invited me to attend. I brought a girlfriend with me, and when we entered the gallery the ambiance reminded me of a small, dark, sultry jazz club. Sammuel was in a corner of the room spinning an eclectic mix of base beats. Modern works of art covered the walls, and opposite of Sammuel was a small bar.

My friend and I roamed the gallery, checking out the art and then we grabbed the only open seats at one of the few tables near the bar. The venue was so crowded that sharing tables with strangers was the only option, so when a small group of guys joined us I thought nothing of it. We started talking, and it turned out that one of the guys was a friend of Sammuel’s. Needless to say, after the music stopped, and the venue was preparing to close, Sammuel joined us at our table. Eventually, he invited everyone back to his studio for a nightcap and an encore.

While Sammuel packed his turntables in preparation to leave, and the group finished their drinks, my friend and I meandered outside. We loitered around the entrance of the gallery, lit a cigarette and sat down on a bench next to another smoker. What I didn’t know was that the guy I sat next to was part of the group who had been sharing a table with us inside. We got to talking, and I could feel the chemistry flowing between our words. Imagine my surprise when the group trickled out to walk to Sammuel’s studio, and the smoking man joined us. We walked together, chatting, laughing, and of course, flirting.

Shortly after arriving at the studio, the smoking man quickly introduced himself, and we immediately hit it off. I enjoyed talking to him so much that I could’ve chatted with him all night. He was incredibly handsome with golden locks and big ‘ol baby blues. Our conversation simply screamed, “Hello sparks”! It wasn’t before long that my friend and I had to leave to catch the last subway train home. The smoking man escorted us out of the building (we had to take a rickety warehouse elevator to the ground level from Sammuel’s 3rd floor studio), and as we said our good-byes I gave him my phone number.

Soon thereafter we went out on our first date… that was 4 years ago. Now we’re married and just had our first baby. And you know what? I have no idea whatever happened to Sammuel!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Five How We Met Stories

Below are five "how we met" stories contributed by good friend and writer Terrence Moss. In true reporting fashion, Terrence interviewed these couples and wrote up their very sweet tales of romance. Terrence often had to overcome the reluctance of his subjects and convince the couples that they really had a story worth sharing. As he says about himself,
 "Some of the simplest of stories have the sweetest moments. And I’m a moments guy."
For more work by Terrence Moss check out 

Doug and Mike

Doug and Mike met on gay dot com. It was an “almost didn’t happen” situation because if Mike had used his previous profile picture of him during Halloween in his pimp costume, then Doug wouldn’t have bothered to private message him in the first place – despite the fact that he had already passed the “cute” test.

From Mike’s vantage point, Doug’s picture wasn’t particularly cute as it made him look like he had a growth coming out of his neck. Nevertheless, Mike was a nice guy and responded.

Love at 30,000 Feet

Love blossoms in the most unusual circumstances...
It was a Thursday evening. Ashley was flying to New York and meeting up with friends to attend a concert. Matt was among a group of travelers sitting in the row in front of Ashley; she could hear him singing lyrics from the band’s songs. Ashley started up a conversation with Matt just as they arrived in NY, and then the two went their separate ways.

Abram and Racine

Abram and Racine met in August of 2005. They both worked for the same company, but on different coasts. He was living in Los Angeles and she was living in New York. Abram was being sent to New York to provide Pivot Table Excel training to the media buyers in that office. For Abram, this also constituted a free trip to get together with the girl he dated in college. For Racine, this simply meant finally meeting the guy she’d spoken to on the phone so many times.

No Fancy Car

In March of 2002, Merkus’s sister Karah from called to tell him about a work friend of hers named Stacie. She was a college-educated, independent professional, while
he was a long-haired college dropout, the lead singer of an obscure band
 According to Karah, however, they had a lot in common…interest in Tom’s of Maine products, Crystal Deodorant and yoga. Hmm.
At the time, Merkus was living in Los Angeles and working in a series of bad jobs. His band was doing great, but no one gave a shit (and, in his words, they still don’t). Karah asked him if he’d be interested in meeting Stacie.
“Is she hot?” Merkus asked.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Standing the Test of Time ( and Distance)

When I entered University, I was approached to take part in the science pageant. I agreed and Jeff was my partner during the event. We got to know each other better during the rehearsals and both of us stayed in the east part of Singapore. After our late rehearsals, he would give me a lift back home and we would spend time chatting and getting to know each other better. Over time, we were almost inseparable. During one of our outings with the rest of the contestants, Jeff asked me to be his girlfriend and I agreed. There were both sweet moments as well as times when we disagree. Often, we would find ourselves tearing our hair our trying to meet each others expectations and demands. After each bicker and squabble, we would strive harder to stay together and work things out. Then came the test of time. He was to go to Slough, London for a year and half. Spending time apart was not easy. We thought that this might be our end like so many other couples,but we stuck together. Despite his daytime being my sleeping time, we would catch up during the weekends using Skype and MSN chat. During my holidays, I visited him and we spent time touring countries like Switzerland and Austria. During our trip to Vienna, it began pouring in the evening. We quickly sought shelter in a nearby church. Just as I turned around to see if Jeff was right behind me, I saw him kneel down on one knee. He proposed with a ring he had bought in London. It was beautiful, and I said "Yes"!
 After he came back from London, he was again posted abroad. I waited for him and we finally got hitched in 2011. We just celebrated our first year anniversary and I must say, even though it's not always easy being together, much less staying together, what we have is well worth the effort.

Friday, June 8, 2012

That First Kiss

He was playing the guitar at the church with the Christian Youth Group. He was 16 and I think I don’t have to clarify that at that point he was really not interested in the 9 year old girl that I was. He looked like an angel to me, with his long blond hair (When I look at some old pictures now, he looked more like the “Hanson” brothers…). I didn't know his name or who he was, but I knew he felt like someone special to me.

Years passed by, I was 17, he was 24. I was in the Christian Youth Group too. He wasn't anymore, because he was now working a few hours away. I hung out with his friends and brothers, they were all talking about him, but I didn't know who they were talking about, until I saw some pictures and made the link (not with the Hanson, but with the angel).

And then, one day he stopped by to say hello at our local room. His name was Matthieu. I fell in love.
At one of my best friend’s birthday garden party, sitting at the table, I asked him if I could extend my legs and thus put them on his (can you imagine how it feels like for a teenage girl? My legs were touching his legs!! I still can remember those insignificant moments because they were, at that time, very decisive). At the end of the party, he drove me back home. I was so proud leaving the party with him!

During the summer, we met a few times at the Montreux Jazz Festival, Switzerland, not far from our home towns. One night, he managed to get free tickets for a concert and my phone number. He wanted to ask me to go with him. I unfortunately didn't hear my phone and I missed it. I was devastated on the next day, devastated like if I was never going to have another possibility to spend time with him (but, he now had my number!!).

After our meetings with the group, we used to have a drink in a local pub or in the city. And sometimes Mat joined us a little bit later. Suddenly, he was always coming with us. I was so happy. We talked and laughed together a lot. Some people were already joking that he was only coming because of me. They were saying: “Let’s call your pilot to tell him we’re going out tonight” Blush!!
He had a car and he was often driving me back home. Once, he brought me back a little late, maybe 30 minutes later than my parents were expecting me. My mother was very angry at us. I was so ashamed. I thought he would never talk to me again. Fortunately, that didn't happen. He even called me and asked if I'd like to do some ice skating. “Oh yes yes yes yes yes yes!!!!!!!”

We went ice skating together on the 12th of December, our first date. We skated around the rink about an hour. At the end, he took me in his arms and… that’s it. He just took me in his arms (why didn't he kiss me?!?!). While walking away of the rink, I put my ice skates in the opposite hand of him, just in case he would take my hand (but he didn't). On Monday, at school, I just wanted to scream my love out and tell everybody what happened, but I couldn't, because I was sitting just next his littlest brother and I didn’t know if he knew or suspected something.

The next weekend, on the 19th of December 2004, he invited me for a walk through the Christmas Market of Montreux. This was our second date. There, he took my hand.

 There were so many people at the market. When we met a couple of friends of him and the boys were getting some drinks for us, the girl asked me how long we were together and I answered: “Oh, but we are not together!” When Mat came back at the table with some warm tea, he took my hands and played with them. She must have been very confused!! And I was in pure happiness.

At the end of that Christmas-Market-date, he kissed me. WooHoo!!! HE KISSED ME!!!!!! I was totally out of my body, high in the sky, flying with butterflies!! Intense moment of perfection!
This place, just under the stairs going to the station, has been very important for us each year since then. We use to go there every year on the 19th of December and we kiss again. 7 years later, on the 19th of December 2011, he asked me to be his wife, by the lake, a few meters from where we first kissed. We’re going to marry on the 22nd of June 2013.

He’s my angel. He’s why my life is beautiful, the one that cries when I cry and laughs when I laugh. He’s the one I’m going to marry.

PS: He cut his hair…

My wedding preparation blog:

Friday, April 27, 2012

A Knock On The Door

Back in 2004, I was a college girl, with a busy schedule between playing with several independent rock bands, working in a computer store and completing my final university assignments. He, on the other hand, was a 30 year-old guy who spent most of his days playing computer games with his friends, and had a great time enjoying unemployment.

We were busy with our own lives, until that bright day, when I took one of my friends to this cafe where my band loved to hang out. To my surprise, she suddenly said, “Wait a minute.. I know this place!” to which I replied, “Of course you do, didn’t I tell you all about this café so many times, but you always refused to come?”
“Not that cafe, but that house next to it. My boyfriend once took me there to meet his friend. There’s a guy there, his name is Egi. We spent an entire day there, playing computer games and watching movies!”

So there I was, in front of an old house and waving to my friends at the cafe, telling them to wait for a moment. We stood in front of his door, and my friend began to knock. He was sleeping, but then had to wake up because of my friend wouldn’t stop knocking.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mother Knows Best

Henry started North High School in 1930 and I started there in 1932.  We didn’t know each other then but, he told me later that he and his friend used to watch me out of an upstairs window in North High School when I was outside.  They bet each other on who would have the first date with me!  Not knowing anything about this bet, I learned later that Henry enlisted some outside help and got Catherine to invite both of us to a Valentine Party at her house..

That night, Henry walked me home from the party, because we didn’t have a car, and the street cars had stopped running.  We didn’t stay very late because he had to get up early and deliver newspapers.  I got a huge blister on my heel from my shoes, but I enjoyed the walk. That was in 1933, and we started to go together off and on.  I had another friend who was a very nice young man whom I dated and he took me to the Senior Prom (much to Henry’s chagrin and dismay!)  We were not allowed to take anyone who was not a North Student (Henry had graduated), so I told Henry that I was going with Jack and he was quite upset. We smoothed things out afterward and then we started going steady. 

Heads or Tails

Paul was my older brother's friend at college - I was a junior in high school. One weekend Jim brought Paul home with another college buddy. Dad had four tickets to the hockey game so they had to flip for "me" as to which of Jim's buddies would be taking the kid sister to the hockey game with Jim and his girlfriend. Well, some days Paul KNOWS he won the toss...and then there are days when he thinks he might have LOST the toss.Anyway, we were married seven years later! (Lots of "frogs" in between, but I know I ended up with the prince.)Now it's forty terrific years of marriage later!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Quadraille Ball

My husband and I met in 1990 in New York City through The Quadrille Ball  ( We both got roped into it in very roundabout ways. In a drunken stupor as a groomsman at his friend's wedding, he promised the groom's grandmother (who was on the Board for this charity) that he would participate. Meanwhile I had just moved to NYC and saw a flyer posted in the grocery store about a couple who were selling all their housewares and moving out of the country. I bought all their pots, pans, dishes, etc. and they invited me to their going-away party where I met an interesting international crowd, all of whom knew each other through the Quadrille, and encouraged me to dance it the following fall.

What was so cool about this is that it was an old-world way to meet in a modern era. New York Magazine even did a cover story on the charity (maybe 8-10 years ago). Apparently we were about the 40th marriage to result from the charity at the time we met. Meeting your husband in winter, in snowy New York City, when he is in tails and you are in a hoop skirt and tiara, is quite enchanting!


Sunday, March 4, 2012

A Leap of Faith

I met my husband when I was thirty years old and he nineteen. I was a preceptor for CNAs in a nursing home. I had worked there for four years before I met my husband. I worked alone a lot of times. Short staffing was a big problem in the nineties. When my husband started working at the nursing home he began working with me. Within just a few short days, my workload had become noticeably lighter. Suddenly I was getting a lunch break, and it was all because of him, and the patients I had grown to love were feeling the extra staffing as well.

I was at a crossroads in my life. I was a practicing alcoholic and in an abusive relationship.  One of the grandmas I took care of told me that if I was ever going to find a good man I had to write a list of characteristics.So, I did. I gave it to her to read and she said "Honey" no one is this perfect.  Take a few of these things off the list and be more reasonable. I knew from personal experience I could not. I walked outside,got on my hands and knees and prayed to the lord to send me someone to love. When I looked up there he was, right in front of me all along.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

In A Heartbeat

It started off with a planned trip to Australia after graduating from the university with one of my best friends.  We wanted to take a break before entering the "real world", so we decided to go to Australia for a year on a working holiday visa.  We thought we'd be able to get jobs working at one of the beach-side resorts or on a cruise line.  Unfortunately, after arriving in Australia, we quickly ran out of money and found it was much harder to get hospitality work than we originally thought it would be.  So one day while we were surfing the internet for work in a hostel in Brisbane, we came across a work hostel that was taking in backpackers.  We booked our rooms and coach ride to Bundaberg.  

The night we arrived in Bundaberg, I wanted to cry after seeing where we would be staying.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Toldya So

“Honestly Tania, you have to meet him, he is perfect for you!”  I rolled my eyes at Nat.  We’d known each other for about 2 months, since she had moved down from Sydney.  About 3 weeks before she had started to bug me about meeting a friend of hers – Vas.  She was convinced we were very well suited and should get together.    No-one ever believes their friends, do they?  I mean – it’s not like they really KNOW us and can pick the right person without all our internal biases, is it?
“Nat, hun, honestly, I don’t think so.“
 I was busy, mum had died recently, and I was worried about my dad. Plus, this guy was in Sydney; no use to me 9 hours away.  It’s not like I could leave my family right now.  A long distance relationship was the last thing I wanted on my shoulders.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Mutually Beneficial

Here's how we met:
We met summer of 2006 with completely different agendas. I was in Dallas, Texas for an internship and to finally gain some independence from my parents.  Sothea was in Dallas, TX for an awesome summer with the Fab Four and to get away from reality of life.  We were introduced to each other by my cousin Melisa, at the AMC24 Cinema Complex at Stonebriar Mall in Frisco, after my first day at the internship .  I just shrugged my shoulders at the introduction thinking this was just another friend of my cousin's.  I didn't even bother attempting to actually retain his name! Don't feel bad for him just yet though... Sothea's presumptive description of me, prior to our introduction, was one of a sheltered, nerdy girl with thick glasses and a complete hot mess! Someone he could really care less to get to know more about!
That summer's activities is a whole other story book to tell, but in the end, I guess one can say we both benefited from it!

Life Between Donut World and Real World