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?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Holiday Happiness

The holiday season is certainly very special for us! Met at Christmas, engaged on Thanksgiving, and getting married New Years Day! :)
"Mike and I met during Christmas at my aunt’s house in Florida. He was my cousin’s best friend and I was instantly smitten. He was so different than anyone I’d  ever met. He was hilarious, sarcastic, extremely intelligent, and had the most amazing stormy blue eyes you’ve ever seen. He chased me around my aunt’s back yard with markers—I guess that meant he liked me, too. After the holidays, I went back to Alabama with my family, but he never left my mind. That was in 1998, and I was 11.

We saw each other every other Christmas for the next few years—only 4 times between 1998 and 2003. We spent the time between, chatting on Instant Messenger, sending ridiculously long emails, and occasionally  talking on the phone. We never fully came out and said that we liked each other, but it was obvious. We’d go months without speaking, and then pick up right where we left off. Despite the distance, there was something that just kept drawing us back to each other. The last time we came to Florida for the holidays was in 2005. I was so excited to see him. I had just turned 18, I had grown up a little, and I just knew that if he was there that Christmas, I would finally tell him how I felt after all those years. He didn’t show. I was 16 the last time I saw him.

When I was 19, I moved to Florida with my boyfriend at the time, Jason, so he could pursue his education. I hate to admit this, but as soon as my then-boyfriend decided to move to Florida, Mike crossed my mind.

I knew I would finally be in his home state, closer to him than I’d ever been. Needless to say, my relationship with Jason didn’t work out for a number of reasons. I moved in with my mom in South Florida where I did a combination of sulking and stalking Mike's MySpace page. After a few weeks, I got up the courage to email him. I never expected to get a response—we hadn’t spoken in a year and a half, nor seen each other for almost 4 years. He responded. We (again) emailed and spoke on the phone for a few weeks until we decided to finally meet up.

When we reunited, it was magical. Fireworks. One day turned into three, and we both just knew. This was it. This is what everyone talks about, hopes for. This is why fate kept bringing us back together no matter how much the cards weren’t in our favor. And finally, after almost 10 years, on that weekend, fate managed to set everything up perfectly, flawlessly. On the way home after that weekend, I called my friend, and the first thing I said was, “Oh my god, I’m going to marry him!”

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

John and Priscilla

John Alden and Priscilla Mullins were both passengers on The Mayflower when it arrived in Plymouth in 1620. John was not a Pilgrim, but had been hired to do repairs on The Mayflower when she was still in Southampton, England.

He decided to make the journey to the New World perhaps with the hope of gaining prosperity or perhaps with the hope of winning the love of one of the passengers, Priscilla Mullins.

John was not the only passenger to fall in love with the lovely maiden; his good friend, Captain Miles Standish, planned to ask her for her hand in marriage.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem, The Courtship of Miles Standish, tells the story of the resulting love triangle. Miles loves Priscilla, Priscilla loves John, and John loves both Priscilla and his friend, so decides to take no action.

Things look grim until Priscilla, who had been through quite a bit of suffering already, speaks up and challenges

 "Why don't you speak for yourself, John?" He does, they marry, and all is well.
www.wikipedia/John Alden

Worth Her Weight In Gold

 In December 1948, winter break was approaching and Miriam Wetzel, a sophomore at Otterbein College in Westerville, Ohio, needed a ride home to Akron.  

After asking around among her friends and acquaintances, someone informed her that a senior named Gerald “Jug” Ridinger was driving to Hudson that weekend to be in a wedding.

He was taking two bridesmaids and another girl home to the same area. (Remember, at this time the interstate highway system we know today didn't exist.)

Miriam soon approached Jug and asked if he had room for another passenger.  Before he answered, he stepped back, looked her up and down and said, “How much do you weigh?”
Apparently Miriam’s weight made the cut.  She joined the three other girls in Jug’s car on the trip to northeast Ohio that weekend and remembers having some great laughs along the way.  To keep the conversations going, Jug, who had been a Marine in WWII, told stories about the war to entertain the passengers.

Miriam and Jug started dating when classes at Otterbein began again in January. Their first date was Miriam’s 19th birthday. If Jug had known she was so young, he might not have asked her out, but on their third date, he said, “I want to marry you.”  That’s the closest resemblance to a proposal that Miriam ever received. As they continued to date and grow closer, it became obvious to both of them that marriage was in their future.

On June 16, 1951, the Saturday following Miriam’s college graduation ceremony, Miriam and Jug were married.

Sixty years later, after many good memories, laughs, family vacations and more, the couple remains happily married and looks forward to many more years together.  They recently traveled to the Pocono Mountains with their four children and their spouses, eight grandchildren and one great-grand-child for their every-five-year wedding anniversary trip and family photo.

Miriam and Jug remember their first trip together, more than sixty years ago.  Before Jug had reached any of his passengers’ homes, one of his tires went flat, the one on Miriam’s side of the car.
But luckily he decided to keep Miriam around anyway!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier III of Monaco

A few years ago, I had the wonderful opportunity to visit Nice, along the beautiful French Riviera. I regretted not making the short trip over to Monaco, since the friends who did marveled over its amazing vistas. 

To Americans, when Grace Kelly made the same trip, but to become "princess of the realm" , it seemed like fantasy had magically become realty. Could a commoner really become royalty,live happily ever after, and be on the Riviera as well?

On April 15,1956 the world prepared for what was called by the press "The Wedding of the Century". America's own, Grace Kelly was marrying Prince Rainier of Monaco, and leaving her actress life to become a princess. Apparently the marriage was a result of practicalities rather than romance.

Grace Kelly led the American delegation to the Cannes Film Festival in April 1955. While there, she was invited to a photo shoot at the palace to meet Prince Rainier III. The prince was shopping for a wife. Apparently because of the Monaco Succession crisis of 1918, Monaco would revert to France if an heir could not be produced by Rainier.

Happy to bid farewell to his bachelor life, in exchange for continuation of his reign, Rainier traveled to Philadelphia in pursuit of Grace Kelly. When asked , "If you were pursuing a wife, what kind would you like?" Rainier smiled and answered, "I don't know...the best." If America were choosing a match for the prince in the mid 1950's, Grace Kelly would undoubtedly have been at the top of everyone's list. She brought style and class to all of her roles, whether on stage or in film, and had a quiet presence about her which commanded respect.

It seemed natural that a prince would choose her from all others to stand by his side and "rule the kingdom". The match was arranged very much in the manner in which royal had been wed for hundreds of years. Kelly and her family paid Prince Rainier III a dowry of two million U.S. dollars, Grace Kelly gave up her acting career, and the palace was completely redecorated to welcome the bride.

On April 4, 1956, leaving from New York City Harbor, Grace Kelly, along with her family, bridesmaids, poodle, and over eighty pieces of luggage boarded the ocean liner SS Constitution bound  for the French Riviera.

Thousands of fans sent the party off for the eight-day voyage, and in Monaco, more than 20,000 people lined the streets to greet the future princess. As Alfred Hitchcock said, he was very happy that Grace had found herself such a good part. Fairy tales can come true...with a little help on the side.

"Why, I've Met My European!"

My grandmother was one of few women attending university in the early 1920's and probably the only woman majoring in chemistry. As the only female in lab classes and lectures, she was surrounded by men and her mother, my great-grandmother, hoped this university experience would yield a prospective suitor. My grandmother though was not going to be distracted from her studies. She wanted to earn her degree, work, travel and perhaps find her future husband abroad, as she had always fantasized spending her life with a sophisticated European.

Nearly a decade later and well into her 30's, my grandmother was financially independent and had by now seen much of the world during her travels. Her family had long since given up on the idea that she would marry and have a family. Nonetheless, as my grandmother readied herself for a party one particular evening, she still held the faint hope that someday she would encounter the European she had dreamt about.

Two hours into the party and rather bored, she leaned to her friend and whispered that she was ready to leave. As she gathered her things, she heard several party-goers welcome another guest, when she turned to look to see who it was she met the gaze of a distinguished looking man about ten years her senior. They were soon introduced by the party's host and my grandmother returned her belongings and went to sit back down with her friend. Her friend, surprised at my grandmother's return, asked why the sudden change of attitude as my grandmother was not one to change her mind so quickly. My grandmother's response was quite simple: "Why I've met my European!"

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veteran's Day

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, an armistice was declared between the Allied nations and Germany in the First World War, then known as "The Great War." Commemorated as Armistice Day beginning the following year, November 11th became a legal federal holiday in the United States in 1938. In the aftermath of World War II and the Korean War, Armistice Day became Veterans Day, a holiday dedicated to American veterans of all wars.

The year my husband completed a graduate program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, we were young newly weds who felt like we had “arrived”, and we were determined to take advantage of all Harvard had to offer. The first event we attended that year was at the American Repertory Theater. The members of ART were beginning the season with solo performances, and the first was a reading from Vera Brittain’s Testament of Youth. The reading vividly brought to life Brittain’s haunting prose describing the heartbreaking loss of her fiancee and her best friend, her brother, to the horrific events of the First World War,

“There seemed to be nothing left in the world, for I felt that Roland had taken with him all my future and Edward all my past.”

When the performance was finished, the actress quietly remained on stage as the audience sat in stunned silence, unable to applaud. 

The last event my husband and I attended that same year  was the highly anticipated spring concert dominated by two exciting acapella groups, The Harvard Krokodiloes and The Radcliffe Pitches. The concert was held in Harvard's Sander's Theater, and the house was packed, the energy high, and the music wonderful. These talented student performers were capable of bringing laughter and tears to an audience who wildly cheered and savored each song performed. The Kroks traditionally had each member of the group perform a solo to be backed up by the remaining singers. When a young African American student stepped forward to sing, no one expected the performance to take the turn it did. Sander’s Theater is housed in Harvard’s Memorial Chapel, a huge Victorian building constructed in 1865 to honor Harvard students who fought for the Union in the Civil War. 

As time has passed, more sad memorials have been added to honor Harvard students who have died in all the wars fought since the Union was saved. On this night, the student began to sing the poignant song “Mama Look Sharp” from the musical 1776. 

As he sang, his voice transported both himself and his listeners to another place where the feel of battle, and the terrible peace which lay in its wake, held us all in its power. Once again, after the performance, the house sat in stunned silence. The singer himself seemed to have difficulty regaining his focus, and two members of the group came forward to join him as the crowd broke into thunderous applause. 

Both events still bring tears to my eyes, and both events make me feel that on this day all the veterans of all the wars are very much with us in mind, heart and spirit.

My Black and White Movie

My fiance, Mark, and I met in November 2009 while I was living in New York City. He is in the Marines, and was in town commissioning the USS-NY. At the time a friend of mine was working for the owner of the bar,Coyote Ugly. I was out there with friends one night, and Mark came in with a lot of his buddies. Before I knew it, we were chatting it up and he asked if we could go to dinner before he left. He was only in town for a few days and I ended up being the  NYC tour guide for him and his friends for the rest of his stay. Over the next six months we stayed in touch through text messages and a few phone calls. Eventually, I moved to the same state that he lived in to spend time with my sister. Once we found out we were relatively close, he drove up and took me on our first date! We've been together ever since. :)

When I met him I knew he'd be the one that I married. I often referred to how we met as my "black and white movie." Before our first date my dad asked me why I was so nervous. My response was, "... because I feel like if I go on a date with him, he's going to be the last person I date!" I think after that my dad decided not to ask anymore personal questions. :)

Mark is now deployed and is set to return at the end of the year. We are so excited for that day to come and for the opportunity to spend our lives together!!

And....we got married!!!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Walter and Betsy Maxwell Cronkite

Today is the birthday of one of America's most honored news broadcasters, Walter Cronkite.

When I was in sixth grade, my teacher brought in the school’s only television set so our class could watch the Gemini XII mission reenter the atmosphere and splash down. It was amazing enough that we were allowed to watch TV, but what amazed me even more was Miss Hughes. 

We all called her “Miss Hughes Sixth Grade” to differentiate her from her sister, “Miss Hughes Fifth Grade”. She was an older woman, passionate about Ancient History, but seeming to be beyond other passions to my eleven year old mind. 

The news anchor who broadcast the splashdown of Gemini XII that day was, of course, Walter Cronkite. I don’t remember any of the news surrounding the NASA mission, I only remember being completely astonished when Miss Hughes uncharacteristically exclaimed, “Oh, I just love Walter Cronkite!” 

All America did love Walter Cronkite, and Walter Cronkite loved and cherished Betsy for nearly 65 years of marriage. Here is their “how we met” story.

Walter and Betsy met in 1936 in Kansas City, Missouri while both were working at the KCMO radio station. Betsy was an advertising writer. Walter said in an interview with PBS, "She was one of the most beautiful people I ever saw in my life. ... I saw her for the first time ... coming down the hall ... and I fell in love before I even knew her name, or what she did, or if whether I would ever see her again ... I was paralyzed in wanting to meet this lady ... She worked there a week before I introduced myself ... She was so precious that I didn't dare make any mismove."

No “mismoves” were made and the couple was soon married. Although Betsy is reputed to have been 45 minutes late to the ceremony, Walter remained steadfast as the organist played “I Love You Truly” many times before the bride arrived. Apparently the constant reminder worked.

And That's The Way It Is

This story starts back in the late 90’s. I was busy working, not really paying attention to the calendar. I was in my 30’s and spent most of my adult life workings in radio, TV and in my spare time working at the family farm in Cabot. Dating was not a priority. I guess I woke up one morning and said no-one is going to show up on my doorstep—so if I was ever going to get married I’d better work at this a bit. I began to date occasionally. This meant asking women out, and from time-to-time someone would suggest I date this or that person. Dating is a painful process. I am not good with rejection, so I was always fearful someone would not want to go out if I asked.  I did not ask many people out.
My fortunes changed drastically in the late summer of 1998. I was a member of a health club in Montpelier called First in Fitness. I would go there after work. I would quietly work my way to the treadmill each night. I always chose the room with the big screen TV so I could watch the news. Most nights it was on CNN, but on occasion someone would change it to Channel 3 and the local news. This was the station I worked for, so I could appear fluttering through the air most nights. One night around 6pm I was busy reading my People Magazine and watching the news out of the corner of my eye, and I appeared.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

You Can't Be A Hitter If You Don't Come To The Plate

Before I begin, I should let you know that this whole story is completely from my point of view, which means that my wife has and will categorically deny everything I am about to write. Moreover, the story is also more of a "how I met my wife" more than "how we met," but I'm hoping that is all right. I apologize for the biographical material I include, but it is important to how I met my wife. In the end, I think it is a story worth telling because it involves a baseball metaphor, a little sympathy and it highlights the importance of persistence, something which we could all use from time to time. More importantly, though, it is a story that should give nerds everywhere a little hope. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Sofia Vergara and Nick Loeb

Sofia Vergara, the talented, funny, and beautiful star of "Modern Family" has found love with Nicholas Loeb, son of famous businessman, financier, and philanthropist, John Loeb, Jr.

The two met through friends in 2010. Sofia walked in to the Sunset Tower's hotel restaurant following an awards ceremony. Nick was attracted to her for her quick wit and sense of humor. There was immediate chemistry and the deal was sealed when, only six months later, Sofia showed a softer side by caring for Nick after a terrible car accident left him laid up for months.

While SofiaVergara spends her time acting and promoting various products, Mr. Loeb is busy marketing a new line of condiments.

"Is she really going out with  Mr. Condiment?" Yes, she is...she's in love...and they're engaged to be married.

Just never know when the right guy will come along.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Honoring Oscar Wilde

  Today is the birthday of the brilliant Irish poet and author, Oscar Wilde, who became one of the most successful playwrights of late Victorian London.

Known for his biting wit, flamboyant style, and fascinating conversation, he was a sought after dinner guest and the toast of society.

Following the social norms of the day, he married Constance Lloyd, the very wealthy daughter of a powerful Queen's Counsel.
Together the couple had two sons.

As Wilde's career and social life flourished, he became more confident in his own sexuality, and began to seek the company of men.

His fall from grace was swift and harsh. The laws prohibiting homosexuality in Victorian England were uncompromising, and Wilde was tried for "indecent behavior" and sentenced to two years of hard labor.

During this time he suffered derision, cruel deprivation, and injuries which would lead to an early death. He also experienced deep introspection which led to his final work, DeProfundis.

To regret one's own experiences is to arrest one's own development. To deny one's own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one's own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Boston to Berlin

I was teaching at a Boston high school in a job that was filled with long days and stress. Going out on a "school night" was never possible. This one night, though, I made an exception.

 Out with a friend for drinks and dancing to some 80's music, I saw this cute guy out on the floor with his friend. They were here on vacation from Germany.

We were the only four dancing, and he danced closer and closer. I needed to rush off to get enough sleep for the day ahead, but I promised to call him.

 He was surprised that I followed up, and the next night while snuggling and watching a movie he said smiling, "You're not just a guy for one night." The way he said it, with his charming German accent, made me fall for him right away.

I'd had a bad experience with a long distance relationship, and I was reluctant to have another,but he was always reassuring and coaxed me through the first few months.

A year later I made the move to Berlin.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Unforgettable You

Have you found the "right one" but feel that your 'how we met' story is the "wrong one"? 
I know you have been waiting for this. I've waited awhile to share this story with you, friends, because it's so freaking cute it might just make you gag. Grab a trash can, just in case, and here goes.

Once upon a time, on a sunny day with Carolina blue skies, "she" was walking along Franklin Street wearing a really fabulous outfit. She had on some really awesome Kate Spade heels, and one got caught in the sidewalk crack (don't you hate it when that happens?). As she struggled to free her shoe (it was really stuck and she was making quite a spectacle of herself), a handsome young man came by to assist her. He said "nice shoes" while really checking out her legs, and that's how "she" and "he" met.
Cute story, huh? Thanks. It's totally not true.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Great Bobby Orr

Today, in the little town of Waterbury, Vermont the Bruins will have an "open to the public" practice on a rink usually busy with youth hockey, Stick and Puck time,and public skating.

The Bruins will launch their Stanley Cup campaign for the 2013-2014 hockey season doing team building exercises, hanging out with their fans, and signing autographs.

I think this is great!

And...perhaps the greatest Bruins player of all is still Bobby Orr.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Xisca Perello & Rafael Nadal

In their third match in 4 years, Rafael Nadal defeated Novak Djokovic to win his 2nd U.S. Open singles title.

By all accounts, Nadal is not only an amazing athlete, but also a very decent guy. Just look at his long term relationship with his girlfriend, Maria Francisca Perello, better known as Xisca.

Nadal and Perello grew up in the same town on the island of Majorca and started dating when they met in school in 2005. Their relationship had a chance to deepen and mature before Nadal became the tennis star he is today.

Xisca is apparently becoming more accustomed to the limelight and has been seen cheering Nadal on at the U.S. Open along with his sister and his mother. Rafa has called Xisca one of the loves of his life, along with his parents and sisters.

Game, Set, Match...Congratulations!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Roger Federer and Mirka Vavrinec

Transitions can be difficult, and it seems as though Roger Federer is going through one now.

To everyone's surprise he's had a rough Grand Slam season, exiting in the semi-finals in the Australian Open in January, the quarter-finals in the French Open in early June, and the 2nd round at Wimbledon to a player ranked 116th.

Despite everyone's hope for a Federer miracle, he lost in straight sets to Tommy Robrado of Spain at the U.S. Open just days ago.

"I've definitely got to go back to work and come back stronger," Federer stated in a post match interview.
"Get rid of this loss now as quick as I can, forget about it, because that's not how I want to play from here on, I want to play better. I know I can."

Always in his corner giving him support, love, and advice is his devoted family.

Federer was born in Binnington, Switzerland, a small area near Basel. He credits his amazing tennis skills to the variety of sports he played growing up: badminton, cricket, and basketball.

He is an avid cricket fan, and knows that he is interested "whenever a ball is involved."

Apparently that interest extends into his personal life. In 2000, while competing for Switzerland in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, he met and fell in love with fellow Swiss teammate, Mirka Vavrinec.

 After suffering from a foot injury in 2002, Mirka retired from tennis and took on the role of Federer's personal relations manager.

The two were married in a small ceremony near Basel on April 11,2009, and on July 23rd 2009 Mirka gave birth to identical twins, Myla Rose and Charlene Riva.

Big Win for Federer!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Great Institution

This weekend the indomitable, Mae West, would have celebrated her 120th birthday!

She was born on August 17, 1893  in Brooklyn, New York and started performing at the age of five.

Mae West went on to a brilliant career on stage, in film, and as a director and writer.

Paramount Pictures film director, George Raft, reflecting on West's brilliant approach to her scenes, remarked

"She stole everything but the cameras."

Mae Wests's approach to love and marriage was as unconventional and brazen as her approach to life. During a brief marriage to fellow Vaudevillion Frank Wallace, she took the upper hand in the relationship, although she was only 17. Insisting on separate quarters during their short time together, West soon grew weary of Wallace and sent him off on a show of his own simply to rid herself of him.

Two years later she was in a stormy and passionate relationship with another Vaudeville headliner, Italian born Guido Diero. The two became engaged.Biographers of both still argue over whether the engagement resulted in marriage, but Mae made her own vies quite clear by stating;

"Marriage is a great institution. I'm not ready fo an institution yet."

West also had a romance with boxing champion, William Jones. When the management of her apartment building prohibited the African-American boxer from visiting, Mae solved the problem by buying the building and lifting the ban.

At the age of 61 Ms. west became romantically involved with former Mr. California, Paul Novak. He moved in  and was with her up until her death at the age of 87. Novak once commented that he
"was put on this Earth to care for Mae West."
Not a bad gig:)'s to one 'kick-ass babe'...Mae West, who reminds us to breathe and not take life too seriosuly. After all....

"It's better to be looked over than overlooked."

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Charles and Anne Lindbergh

Early in the morning of May 20th 1920, Charles A. Lindbergh took off in The Spirit of St. Louis from Roosevelt Field in New York City to make the first successful solo flight across the Atlantic.

Americans sat glued to their radios waiting for word of Lindbergh’s success. The world cheered as his plane was spotted over the coast of Ireland and 100,000 jubilant spectators overwhelmed the shy, adventurous pilot as he landed at LeBourget Field in Paris after less than 34 hours of flight time.

Anne Morrow was a young woman of 21, finishing up at Smith College, when she fell in love with Charles Lindbergh. Her father, Dwight Morrow, as U.S Ambassador to Mexico, invited Lindbergh to Mexico to conduct a good will tour. The new American hero received a roaring welcome from his southern neighbors, and a feeling of awakening from his future bride.

That night Anne writes in her diary of their first meeting: "It was breath-taking. I could not speak. What kind of boy is this?" Then, after Lindbergh takes her up for her first flight, she pens: "I will not be happy until it happens again." Later, after he flies on to other Central American countries, she writes: "The idea of this dear, direct, straight boy how it has swept out of sight all the other men I have known. All my life, in fact my world, my little embroidery beribboned world is smashed. I must have been walking with my head down looking at puddles for twenty years!"

Two years later Anne and Charles were married and shared the heavens and the earth, celebrations and tragedies, and love and understanding for 47 years.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

I Dated a Spy?

When I first learned that I was to be stationed in West Berlin I was so excited. Never in all my life did I ever think that I would be a part of history as “A Defender of Freedom” in the Berlin Brigade. Patrolling the wall between East and West Berlin was something I had read about as a teenager and now I was being sent to actually take part in it. The United States was in the middle of the Cold War and Berlin was the hot spot to see it firsthand.

I had to go through several security clearances to be stationed here as did all those soldiers before me and after me. We were warned that Soviet and East German spies were all over the place and we were to never talk about what we did or where we were going to those not connected with the military.

To help this situation I promised myself that I wouldn’t date any German “frauleins” , not only so I would not be forced to lie to them about what I did but I really didn’t want to break a young ladies heart because I would be leaving after a year and a half.

After six months in Berlin I met a young American lady who was a dependent, the child of an Air Force serviceman stationed at Tempelhoff. I was 19 and she was 18. Her father didn’t like us Army guys and made it be known that he out ranked me and that he held a very high security clearance to which he was a member of the Air Force Intelligence. His dislike of me made it difficult for him to allow his daughter to accompany me downtown to the discos. Yes, this was the early 80’s and the disco scene was big in West Berlin but he would not let his little girl go out with some infantryman with only a year of college under his belt and barbarian tendencies. It was a relationship which held little hope for a future. However, I wouldn’t leave her because her father didn’t like me. He would just have to deal with me.

Like most weekends I wanted to go out with my friends but she wasn’t allowed to go with me to a bar called the “Kudorf” or Cow Town in English. So my friend Ron and I went out to have a good time. After a few drinks it was now my turn to go and buy a round of drinks for us. As I’m waiting in line I hear the two ladies behind me speaking English. Both were tall, blond and beautiful and had my attention. Being the ever so curious person I asked them where they were from. The taller of the two spoke up and said that her friend was from Texas and that she was from Berlin. I noticed during our brief conversation that they both spoke English without an accent, neither Texan nor German. Strange! I got my drinks and left to tell Ron that I met a young lady from Texas (his home state). After I told Ron about her he decided to have a look for himself.

Soldiers from my company started to show up so I hung out with them when Ron left. About an hour later Ron comes back to us and tells me that he’s chatting with the girl from Texas and the Berliner wants to dance with me. At first I said no! I have a girl friend and I would feel uncomfortable dancing with another girl. He begged me and eventually told me he would buy me two beers. Well, two beers was a reasonable offer and what harm comes from helping a friend in the utmost of situations. Off I went following my friend and fellow soldier Ron, from Texas, into battle.

Ron introduced me to Michelle from “Texas” and Antje from “Berlin”. Wait! No accent. Ron from Texas had an accent. Others in my company were from Texas and had an accent. You know the type I’m talking about. That draw….And Antje from Berlin? I was in Germany and every German I knew (not many) had a German accent, but not Antje from Berlin. Her accent was more British. Not only that, a German man insisted on talking to Antje and my German at that time was not good. It was poor! Not only did I not understand a word they were saying but, when ever this German man would start talking to Antje, Michelle would divert Ron’s and my attention and start asking questions. Of course we were brief and short not saying much except some bullshit about what we did. We quickly brought the conversation back to Michelle asking if she knew what they were talking about. No she did not.

Finally, we asked Michelle and Antje how they knew each other and where they had learned English. They laughed and giggled only like a 19 year old female can and proceeded to tell us they had met in Norway. Norway? No way! They then laughed more and said that she was Pakistani having been born in Lahore, Pakistan. No way! 1984, Cold War, Pakistan, neighbor to Afghanistan, Soviet Union fighting in Afghanistan and back to the Cold War. Not only is that an incomplete sentence but I didn’t know what to think then or now. Why would I think all of this? Oddly enough, I had a similar case a few months before while flirting with a young German lady. Her name I will always remember, it was Magda. Why would I remember her name? Because she had a sister named Eva. Any reader of World War II history would put 1 plus 1 together to get my point. Magda, Eva, Magda, Eva…? Well, Eva, everyone should know, was the name of Hitler’s Bride, Eva Braun. But Magda was the wife of Joseph Goebbels, the famous Propaganda Minister of the Third Reich. Why would someone name their children Eva and Magda? Either because they were Nazis or they were spies. This was a good reason to stop flirting.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Couldn't Be Happier

I was back from the University of Vermont on  break.  Went to visit my high school science teacher in his classroom and saw the “new girl” from Massachusetts.

 She had moved to Vermont when her dad’s company transferred him.  Petite, dark, pretty.  I offered her a ride home.  Her younger sister and brother needed a ride too.  We crunched into my MGA and drove to her house.

Cut to another house, a few years and numerous dates later.  We’re at a party,  home from college on summer vacation.  She’s a sophomore, I’m a senior     Finally she says yes to my request for her hand in marriage.  I promise her father I’ll see to her tuition from college if he’ll let us tie the knot.

With the engagement formalized on Christmas Eve, 1961, I depart for Fort Dix New Jersey and the longest 6 month military training on record.

We are married in late September, 1962, six weeks after my discharge from the Army and three weeks after my father dies of cancer.

We wander – sometimes aimlessly, sometimes with purpose -  through the next 50 years.  Life bangs us up a bit, but soothes the bad times with three wonderful, talented, strong-willed daughters.  They each produce three equally wonderful, talented, strong-willed sons.  The gene pool is a wonderful place for swimming!

Today, with Janet’s early-on cancer scare, my stroke and aorta replacement (the tube, not the valve), we soldier on.  A spotted job journey for me – largely in public relations, broadcast journalism, a stint as a Congressional aide, advertising agency owner and retirement  Janet’s 25 year career in elementary education (reading) continues.  I continue to rise at 4:30 weekdays to oversee a 2 hour classical music program.

We have watched our relationship pass through all of the stages, beginning with passion, moving to the child-raising years when not much thought is given to our own needs, to the empty nest and re-grouping of emotion, to the grandparent years which are every bit as fulfilling as the years with our own children.

As we have stumbled through these 50 years, our marriage has survived largely because we have faced the predictable – and unpredictable  -  vicissitudes with lots of humor, teeth-gnashing, fear, hope and, yes, courage.

We continue to function as the Bank of Brian and Janet, the arm chair-Freuds, the wizened oracles and the home of last resort.
Us?  We couldn’t be happier.  Younger maybe, or richer, but not happier.

In the Kitchen

It all started in Berlin around 1980, when I had just finished a relationship and was desperately looking for a room to stay independently.

Well, the first and best way to look seemed to me to be in a Studentenheim, having had good experience with this kind of living before. So I checked out a few places, and as it was urgent and I was feeling the time pressure,I checked out a few Studentenheime, among them the one in Suarezstra├če in Charlottenburg.

The chief administrator, Fr. Weser, seemed to be nice and understanding of my problems and my wishes. So I went by there, she was quite hopeful that she could help me. But she had to talk first to her colleague and would give me notice in half an hour. So I walked up and down Suarezstr and had a coffee, couldn’t wait to come back. I think it was 1:00 or so. So when I finally came into the room, Fr. Weser and her colleague still had their heads together, whispering to each other – I thought oh-oh-oh, how might that end? But then looking to me, she said to me that a room was available. I didn’t know what to say at that moment, but was more than grateful for this offer which I accepted very happily.

The only problem was that I was not officially a student anymore, and had a job as a physician already. So I actually mentioned my personal dilemma and pretended to be working on my M.D. thesis. The ladies were quite understanding and respectful and sympathetic with my life situation at that moment. So I got the room number 210 on the 2nd floor, and was overly happy.

So for the next few terms, every semester, it was always a problem to show my legitimization as a student,which I did not actually have.In order to calm down my social conscience (that I wasn’t taking the Studentenheim room from a needy student) I was able to rent an apartment with my real pay check, and sublet it to a student couple for a low price. Of course this was not only altruistic – I knew I had a place to live if Fr. Weser decided to kick me out.

So I said I would need a little extra time to work on my thesis, but after a certain time I felt that didn’t meet the criteria as a student any more, so I had to explain my personal circumstances in more detail. One time explaining not feeling well in general and another time unexpected difficulties occurring. So by then I had figured out that it would be best to go to the office right behind another person, so that they were busy and attended to that person, and then, when I opened the door, they recognized me of course and waved to me that they were busy right then and couldn’t attend to my semester dilemma, and indicated that it was ok to stay on.

In the meantime, I had met a girl from the States (who had moved in to room number 215) and who had noticed me coming in once a week from Kaiser’s grocery store across the street, usually on a Friday, carrying 4 big plastic bags, with Kaiser’s printed on them, mostly filled with cans of “Mexican Bean Stew”, and soda, supposed to last for the upcoming week.

So after walking up the stairs, usually after a night shift, my arms got longer and longer, and the bags almost hit the floor. When I entered the community kitchen, there was the American girl, usually fixing food for herself (and sometimes for others).

While I stored my food away, I had the feeling the girl felt sorry for me, and we got into a conversation, and she provided me with a different meal than Mexikanischen Bohneneintopf.

Sometime after that we had our first date – an all day boat trip on the Berlin rivers, during which we took pictures of each other and fell promptly in love. The rest is history, and it all began in the kitchen (right around the corner from which we are writing this in our “real” kitchen of 25 years)

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Love At The Piercing Tent

I met by husband, Carl at Ozzfest ’98 in Milton Keynes Bowl, England. I was 17 and he was 16.  We met by the piercing tent while Slayer was onstage. I was debating about getting my nose pierced when Carl and another guy, also named Carl, started talking to me.  I went ahead and got my nose pierced while Carl had his ear pierced a couple of times. I  fainted (never have been any good with needles of any sort), but luckily Carl came to my rescue armed with lager.  The other Carl went in search of cigarettes and never returned, but Carl and I spent the rest of the day together.

At the end of the day we had to leave each other. I boarded my coach to return to Cardiff,Wales, and he boarded his to Leeds, England.  The following day we both realized we had no way of contacting each other; we hadn’t exchanged phone numbers or addresses.  So we both wrote to the contacts page in Kerrang! magazine trying to find each other and appeared on the same page, our adverts almost next to each other. We wrote for a year, the old fashioned way of pen and paper as neither of us had email. Then Carl visited Cardiff for a weekend.  After that we spoke on the phone once a week and visited as often as possible. I wouldn’t recommend the trip from Cardiff to Leeds by National Express coaches.
In March 2000, Carl got a job in Cardiff and moved down.  We lived with my parents for a year while we saved and we bought our first house in July 2001.  We married on 20th June 2002 exactly 4 years after we met. I was 21 and he was 20.
I totally believe our meeting was fate, and it was love at first sight.
We now have 3 sons, Daniel, Oliver and Ben and we've been married for 9 years.
I don't have a pierced nose anymore, just a dent where it used to be.  Carl took his earrings out a long time ago, when he started a 'proper' job.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Live Long And Prosper

Rob and I believe that we must have been meant for each other, but God was playing with the timing.
 My friend from high school was roommates with his best friend when they were at the Air Force Academy; if I’d visited, we’d have met.  Years later, when I was at college, I attended a Star Trek convention in Denver, where my friend and I won first place for a poem about Klingon eating habits.  I had thought of putting a note on the announcement board to the effect of “meet the authors,” but decided that sounded arrogant.  However, Rob was also at that convention, loved the poem, clipped it out, and searched unsuccessfully for us all weekend.  One note, and we’d have met then.  (He still had the poem when we met two years later.)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Red Sox Nation Romance Goes the Distance

Mom and Dad's Story

My Mother and Father were married for 42 years before my Mom passed away from Cancer.   They adored each other.  How they met was always something my Dad would tease my Mom about.   Her cousin was one of my Dad’s best friends, but they had never met.  After World War II my Dad came home. Both he and my Mom worked in Bath, Maine at the iron works shipping factory. 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

A Perfect Balance

Jonathan and I met a week after my 21st birthday.

It was at a dueling piano bar and my friends decided to dedicate a birthday song to me, which led to me trying to hula-hoop on top of the piano while they sang happy birthday.

I saw Jonathan with his friends sitting at the table next to the piano and thought he was cute. My friends decided to let him know of my obvious crush and before you know it, he buys me a birthday drink. Although we exchanged numbers, after a few minutes of talking, I was not very smitten by his charm. He called a few days later and I decided I just wasn't interested. I had just ended a bad relationship, and he was enjoying his single life.

About a month later I inadvertently sent him a text. We ended up planning our first date. This was followed with a second date a few days later. Although I enjoyed his company, I was uneasy about starting to date again, but after weeks of hour long phone conversations I decided to give Jonathan a real chance. We spent Thanksgiving weekend together in 2008, and before we knew it we both felt something that was not only special, but complete. After six months of being together, Jonathan told me he was in love with me during a Sunday sunset at his beach house in Mexico. After that amazing night, I pretty much knew I was with the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.

 Jonathan and I could not be more opposite but we both have what the other person lacks and it’s a perfect balance :) I am so happy and glad that we found each other and would not change a thing!

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Big Win For Texas!

James (I was born and raised in God's country a.k.a. Houston Texas;the only place in the U.S. with decently warm weather)
and I ( born and raised in New Jersey's really lovely I swear!)
met at our orientation BBQ for grad school. I suppose many would call it fate... we never saw each other the entire event. Earlier in the day during orientation I had met some fellow religion students, so I had strictly mingled with my new friends, while James (who didn't have orientation until 2 weeks later) made himself some friends. Several people in both our groups wanted to meet the president of the university, so while our friends attempted to weasel their way closer to the president, we ended up face to face introducing ourselves- having a side chat. Within 5-10 minutes James had left his new group of friends to spend the remainder of the night with us. I called him the next day and well you know how that turned out.
James (I indulge in a variety of amazing, quasi-esoteric hobbies which I will be more than willing to discuss at length with you if you come to my wedding.)
and I ( the possibilities are endless. We shall see...)
were married in September. 

Saturday, March 30, 2013

From Fantasy to Reality

Our love story starts out in 2003 with a man and his dog in Dallas, Texas and woman snowed in, in Kansas City, Missouri. I’m originally from Texas so the Kansas City winters were killing me. I hardly even went out to the store let alone dated. Mostly stayed at home and played online computer games. I wasn’t interested in romance at the time.
Meanwhile my husband to be was in Dallas taking his mini schnauzer for a walk. The dog, Willum, slipped his leash and ran off. Hubby to be took off after him tearing though yards and alleys. He stepped in a hole and blew out his Achilles tendon. A neighbor found the dog and brought him home. Hubby went to the hospital the next day for surgery to repair his ankle. He ended up in a wheelchair with a cast on his leg.

Months later still in a cast and going crazy from boredom, he decided to try online gaming for something to do. He found an obscure online multi-player game and decided to try it. I was already playing that game. We met the very first night he was in the game. Somehow we hit it off an started talking. We discovered that we were both from Dallas and that he was male and I was female. An important fact to establish in a fantasy world.
It is a miracle that we met at all. Considering the fact that never one of us was looking for a mate and neither of us left the house much. The cosmos decided to bring us together despite our every effort to remain single.
As the months went by we met and talked in the games for hours. Sometimes until 2 or 3 in the morning. We graduated to talking on the telephone. About a year later we decided to meet in person. I flew from Kansas City to Dallas thinking I was crazy to do this but what the heck. He met me at the airport with a dozen yellow roses, my favorite. I can’t say it was love at first sight because we already loved each others brains and hearts. The seeing part was the last thing to happen in our chain of events.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Island Love

I had traveled to Cape Cod to visit my older sister one weekend. I had left the guy I was currently dating back home and looking forward to a weekend without men.
My sister took me to a party, we had to travel by boat to a houseboat moored off an island in Falmouth and I didn't know anyone other than my sister at the party.
Feeling a little lost among all these people I didn't know and was unable to connect with, I was quietly sitting on deck when another motorboat arrived to drop off guests for the party. A man
in his twenties climbed the ladder to come on deck and he had on a black t-shirt and salt and pepper hair. I have always been attracted to men with gray hair. I'll never forget
what he looked like the first time I met him. I immediately began talking to him and we talked and talked. We connected from the very beginning. We began dating that next
day and were married 8 months later. We've been happily married for 34 glorious years.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

More Than Friends

I was attending Snow College, about a one hour drive from my parents. Like every good college student I hitched a ride home some weekends carrying loads of laundry, just to avoid the coin laundry outside my apartment door.  One weekend while visiting home, I was invited to attend a Singles Halloween Party (hosted by our church). I went with my older brother who was living at home, and a bunch of his friends from church. I got to meet this really nice guy. So I started going home on weekends to date this guy.

 I initially asked him out, but he eventually came around and asked me a couple times. In February (just a few short months after first meeting this guy) he called me up to see if I would be home that weekend, and if I'd like to double up with his friend. It sounded like fun, so I made arrangement to go home that weekend. "guy" picked me up, and we headed to his friends house to pick him and his date up. When we got there, my date called his friend to make sure he was home (I thought it was odd, because why not just ring the doorbell? anywhoo!). He was home, but his date had canceled on him. Now what? Well, we decided to head inside my date's friend's house (his parents actually) to play games.  Fun, I thought, me and two guys!This could be the most awkward date I've ever been on. It turned out to be pretty fun, though. The friend was living in his parents basement, so I got a quick meet with his parents, before we headed to the basement to find the friend. We got to talking and found out "friend" and I had attended the same high school,

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Aint No Mountain High Enough

We met on the 4th floor in the Donohue Building at Suffolk University spring 2005. Both us us were fairly involved with extra curricular activities, I was with the the Student Government Association (SGA) and Masa with the Japanese Student Association. Masa stopped by the SGA office and some mutual friends were very surprised that we had not met. I was planning on studying in Prague for a semester and Masa had just come back from a week-long business seminar in Prague. He offered to show me his pictures. 

My birthday followed shortly thereafter, and I celebrated at one of my friend's apartments on Beacon Hill.. Of course the apartment was located on the "student end" of Beacon Hill, 7 Myrtle to be exact with a view of the State House from the bedroom windows. To get back to how we met or how we got to know each other. Masa brought me a beautiful big bouquet of flowers and I was sold, this is a gentleman of the sort you rarely find anymore. A couple weeks later we went on our first official date at Joe's American Bar and Grill. The same day happened to be the Greek Parade, which we watched from a distance. We strolled through the Public Garden. In the years to come this became one of our favorite spots in Boston. We weren't in touch during our three month summer break. Masa basically gave up, but I called as soon as I got back to Boston. We went for many long midnight walks and bicycle rides along Charles River and Back Bay.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

That Day In History

I was a transfer student at the university we both attended, and me being the semi-social butterfly I am, I decided that it was time to make some new friends.  That day in history, I decided to befriend my classmate that was assigned by alphabetical order to sit next to me. We made plans to get together that Friday night and so I picked her up at her apartment and we headed off to visit with another one of her friends. After hanging around for a while, feeling totally uncomfortable, I thought I had made a mistake and should have asked the girl sitting to my right if she wanted to hang out instead.
 That’s when she said “Well, I met this guy at a party last weekend, we can see what he’s doing”. She called him up and he invited us over. When we got there we were greeted by the guy she met and a couple of other people who happened to be at their apartment. Little did I know my future husband was there in that apartment playing video games. (not much has changed)
 We talked all night and he tried to convince my why he should be my boyfriend. He was funny and charming and all the girls were after him that night, but he only had eyes for me. The rest is history, and speaking of history, I dropped my history class and never saw that girl again. She was kinda crazy, but without her, I never would have met the love of my life. Crazy how life works out sometimes. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happily Ever After Romance

The first time I met D, I was looking for a studio space near the Waldorf School our children attended.  I wanted to be able to drop the kids off and get a few hours of uninterrupted doll making in while they were in class. My husband, kids and I lived a 45 minute drive away so it was too time-consuming to go home and come back again.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

We Met On A Bus

It was the summer of seventh grade, and my school courageously took 130 or so thirteen-year-olds on a trip to Washington, D.C.

Out of the four buses rented to chauffer us around the city, one of them broke down. I was on it.

Instead of getting a new one, they distributed us evenly among the other buses. I ended up on Steven’s. 

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him. I didn’t know it was him yet, but it was him. He stood up in his seat and chucked a pop bottle at the person sitting behind him. A laugh erupted on the bus. The boy popped his head up above the seat once more and gave a wide, friendly grin at his target and added to the laughter.

It was love at first sight. 

I told a friend sitting next to me that I thought the boy who threw the pop bottle was really cute. 

The friend, without me knowing, passed a handwritten note in a glass ginger ale bottle telling him that, if memory serves right, "I think you're cute. Will you hang out with me at Six Flags? Love, Jolee."

There were a few other notes passed back and forth in this bottle and soon I caught on and became excited to get to Six Flags (our much needed break from all the stuffy history tours). 

When we finally got there, however, Steven was a no show and we didn’t hang out. I figured that was the end of that.

Of course, it wasn’t.

After Six Flags, I sat on the bus waiting to go back to the hotel feeling a little bummed, but then there he was.

He plopped down in the seat next to me, and asked what would go down in the books as the best pick up line ever.

"So, what's your favorite cartoon?" 

Two days later on June 8, 1999, Steven asked me if I would be his girlfriend.
Ten years later, he asked me to marry him.
And I did.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

From Russia With Love

It's party time in Colorado Springs... Julie, my friend and co-worker, just got engaged. I've never been to an engagement party before, coming from Russia, where diamond rings aren't given out before weddings.

The party is right after work, which means I don't have an hour or three to get myself groomed and polished. I head to the fiance's house after a long day of staring into a computer screen. I'm wearing a questionable Chinese top (what was I thinking wearing it to work?or wearing it, period?). The house is packed and the majority of people is in the kitchen; the usual. This is where I head because I'm hungry. I hurry to greet a few friends,  force a smile at some acquaintances, and divert my full attention to a platter of nachos. Have I mentioned, I'm hungry? I dodge many a body as I struggle my way through to the mount of cheesy goo. I'm almost there when a tall lanky guy appears right above the platter and is already eying my food. I grab a paper plate, briskly move the platter toward me and help myself to a generous portion. The tall one doesn't seem to notice I'm not friendly.
Despite this he smiles and even asks me how I know the newly-engaged couple. I guess now that I took a bite, I'm becoming a little more human.
His name is Greg, he lives in that house with 4 other guys. We haven't even chatted for 5 minutes when he invites me to go to Denver to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with him and his friend Mark.
I like his straight-forwardness... and I covet his fab Joseph Abbaud  glasses. I have no other plans for Cinco de Mayo, I love Denver, so I hear myself say "yeah, sure, why not". Greg wonders off to inform his friend they have a new party attender. I see them chat and wonder if I'll have fun at all.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

He Said...

Hmm...  Though both of them HAD to have been there, SOMEHOW they do not always see eye to eye on how it happened...
Eric's Story
I met Shica when she was dressed as a childhood fantasy, Betty Rubble. Dang,but she tricked me.She was not at all  interested in the party we were attending, so I thought that she looked like my Auntie Shica.

I started calling her that.  (For some reason, she did not like me calling her that)  I kept seeing her at different events, and she kept looking like she was not interested in being there, so I kept making fun of her.  This caused her to hate The Wonderful EB. 

 But, her friend kept waving her flaming, burning desire by constantly mentioning my name over and over again - keeping me at the forefront of her mind.  After constantly seeing her at different events, I was finally worn down, so I decided to ask her out at a party hosted at the Covered Bridge Condos.

She Said...

Shica's Story
I met this LOUD, annoying dude at an event hosted by some mutual friends.  He would just make fun of any and everyone that he possibly could, he was relentless.  He started to call me Old Auntie.  Oh, he grated my nerves and my roommate at the time thought that he was THE funniest thing that the world ever created. When that circle of friends would host an event, she would pontificate on whether he would be there and I would cross my fingers that he would decline the invite.  She always won.

One day, the ladies of my book club decided to venture out to a social gathering together, that was hosted by the same circle of folks who happened to work with the loud dude.  Shock, shock, surprise... he was
there.  When we were all leaving the party, he asked for my phone number, he had this coupon book that he was using for his lead in to ask me out on a date.  That was a fresh breath of air in the world of
that can be the Pretentiousness of A-town and I preferred someone who was being direct in his efforts to take me out, while showing that he fully intended to pay for it (though admitting that he wasn't balling out of control in the process).  I gave him my number, we went out on a few dates.  But, he never really said much of anything.

After reading books like He's Just Not That Into You, I figured that he just liked the company of my roommate. So I proceeded to hold him at arm's length.  If he wasn't going to flat out tell me that he was interested, I didn't know what to tell him..

When I did see and speak with him, I came to find that he was an awesome Bible Student, completely devoted to serving God.  Not just in lip service, but I was able to see a sermon lived out in his life on
a regular basis - he taught the youth at his church, mentored the kids from his community, passionately assisted them in making steps to better their lives, made sure to be involved in the lives of his friends.

The loud annoying dude was becoming more real to me now.

This was not a quick sweep you off your feet, this was a long, steady, and gradual test of tried and true.  I am elated that that loud dude has evolved in my heart and mind into someone who I consider to be my very best friend, partner in crime, road dog, and all around the one that I know will be in my corner for life.  So, all of that's to say - don't go with your first impression of anyone, you just might be wrong!