Wednesday, 24 October 2007

A Fairy Tale Begun in New York

I've been thinking about what to blog about. Should I blog about my political leanings? What's been written on another blog that I found incredibly offensive? My friend's phone call from the Labour Party that was incredibly intrusive?


I'll copy Kaycie and write about how I met my husband. Snuffleupagus has been itching to know so here's the story:

Once upon a time there was a 30-year-old woman working as a Sunday magazine editor for a suburban New York newspaper. This woman had worked very hard to get where she was, but life was empty for her. She was married to another journalist who worked at the same newspaper. She competed with him. He competed with her. They were very sad people who didn't have a real life outside work. He had threatened to leave her the year before because of a look she gave him on a really stressful day, but he refused to go to marriage counselling.

Then one day the man went to a seminar in Virginia, and a photographer at the newspaper started to flirt with the woman. She thought he was cute and was very flattered that men still found her attractive. She started to daydream about the photographer. He started to hang around her office a lot. And phone her at home. After two weeks she realized that she wanted out of her marriage. She managed to get the courage to tell the man, but faltered and suggested he come along for counselling. At their first and only session, the man said the woman had lots of problems she needed to sort out and he thought they should split up and he'd made a list dividing their property.

The woman was speechless. This was not what she wanted to hear. She wanted to hear that he loved her and wanted to work things out. She cried all the way home. The next day they divided their possessions, which weren't many, and found separate homes.

The woman lost lots of weight. She lost her job as a magazine editor and had to work nights on the copy desk. And she lost the photographer, who turned out not to be cute at all, but actually a real bastard. She went through many lonely, scary months without any sex at all and would spend weekends not speaking to a soul save her two cats who shared her bed. Eventually, she was put on the city desk, but the man had started seeing a woman from Fresno, California, who sat only 8 feet away from her. They would drop notes to each other to meet in the smoking lounge. The woman saw this several times a day because when she looked up from her computer, there they would be. She was promoted to bureau editor and moved to another office. But life outside work was still very lonely. The woman had worked so hard for so long she didn't know how to have a social life that didn't include late nights in bars with other journalists.

The woman went to see an astrologer because she had just about given up hope. The astrologer told her to calm down and be hopeful because good things were just around the corner. The woman would meet someone, probably from another country. Foreign travel would always be good for the woman. And she would have children, but not before 1994. The woman went home and felt better, though the next month she found out the photographer or the man had given her chlamydia. No more sex for me, the woman decided. At least not until I meet The One.

A few months passed and a good friend came to visit the woman. The woman decided to take a day off work and see the sights of New York with her friend. They went to the Statue of Liberty, back in the days when you could. They walked around Wall Street. They visited South Street Seaport and found an Irish bar where the bartender gave them free beers. Let's stay here a while, they decided. The woman talked for a while to a pompous trader who bored her. Then she turned around. A tall man with dark hair and glasses was staring right at her! She quickly turned back around. Then she couldn't resist another peep. He was still looking at her! He walked up to the bar next to her friend and started talking to her. The woman heard his voice. A British accent! How very sexy! The woman started talking to him too. He walked around to be closer to the woman. The woman's friend talked to the man's friends. Everyone talked and talked for hours, then the woman said she and her friend had to go get something to eat. I'll go with you, said the man with the British accent. And a good thing he did because the woman didn't have a clue how to get to the Stage Deli, which is where they ended up.

At the Stage Deli, the man paid for the meals. Then the three of them walked back to his hotel. He hailed a cab for the woman and her friend to take them to the train station and gave them money for the cab. Then he gave the woman his business card and a quick peck on the cheek. All the way back on the train the woman couldn't stop talking about the man with the British accent. Her friend told her not to expect him to call again.

One week later, about 8 p.m. on a Saturday, the woman took a break from doing her laundry. The phone rang. It was the man with the British accent. They talked and talked and talked. They agreed to start writing letters to each other. Then the man suggested the woman should come visit him. It was arranged for August, two months after they met. The woman was very nervous about the trip but her mother said if something nice happened then it would be serendipity. The man with the British accent drove her all over the country. The sun seemed to shine every day for 10 days. The woman fell head over heels in love with the man and he with her. In Windsor they passed a shop called Serendipity. It was meant to be, they decided.

They next saw each other in November when the man with the British accent flew the woman out to see him in Chicago and Nashville. Then they saw each other at New Year, when they got engaged. Then they saw each other in March when the man with the British accent met the woman's family. Then they saw each other in April, when he came over to pack up the woman's belongings to move her and the cats to England.

They got married in August, then went on their honeymoon to India the following April, where the woman got food poisoning very badly and lost loads of weight (again for she had gained back some pounds). The woman desperately wanted to get pregnant and after six months finally did so -- in January 1994. So the astrologer had been right about many things.

And they have lived ever after, sometimes even happily.


Annie said...

LOVED this!

I was wondering about this story when you hinted at in on a comment on my own story about how I met my husband.

I love happy endings :)

laurie said...

i love this story. you suffered! but we all have pasts like that. at least, i do. a divorce here, a stupid failed romance there....

but what a great story. the only time i ever saw an astrologer was in rural louisiana. she kept telling me that i was going to get a letter once i got home to montana. i kept saying, "not montana. minnesota." and she'd say, oh, yeah, right. and then a few minutes later she'd tell me again that i was going home to montana.

i think you found a better one than i did.

Pixie said...

The phoenix rose from the ashes and love conquered all.

Lovely romantic story.

Iota said...

Ah... Nice to know what a British accent can do for you in America. Mine just gets me a very predictable two-sentence conversation at the Wal-Mart check-out.

Kaycie said...

What a great story! Very romantic, really, all that back and forth across the big pond. Those British accents really are wonderful. When we were in Paris, there was a handsome night clerk that I would see when I went downstairs to use my laptop at night. Now, I am a happily married woman, but that French accent with the tall, dark and handsome looks did get my attention! ;)

-Ann said...

Fantastic story. I think all relationships should involve several months of email or letter only communication and some time spent apart. It's a tough way to start out, but it lets you build a stronger foundation. (Or so I've found. :))

Flowerpot said...

what a wonderful story, wakeup! I'm so sorry you had such a s**t time of it earlier but at least you have the happy bit now. I am so glad for you. Beautiflly told also.

debio said...

Fabulous and heart warming.

Beautifully told.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

annie: Thank you. It's quite an incredible story and it hasn't had an ending yet.

laurie: I've also seen charlatan astrologers, but this one was spookily accurate about lots of stuff.

pixie: What this experience showed me is that I should always remain open to new experiences, not something that comes naturally to me.

iota: I am surprised. I have found most Americans have a very positive reaction to British accents. But I get a predictable reaction here to my American accent.

kaycie: Hmmm. Frenchmen have never done it for me, but maybe that one was exceptional.

-ann: Absolutely! You really get to know a person better that way. We opened up to each other in a way we never would have face to face.

flowerpot: Thank you. Banal as it sounds, every cloud really DOES have a silver lining.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

debio: Thank you. Maybe one day you could tell us about how you and your hubby got together.

The Rotten Correspondent said...

I absolutely loved this!

I've gotten into this bad habit of creating imaginary lives for all my blog buddies, so when something comes along that is THE TRUTH , it makes me very happy.

Hopefully your happy ending is continuing to be happy. Very.

Queeny said...

I'll bet you smile everytime you recall that story. It really is the sort of thing that fairy tales are made of.

jenny said...

Awww... I LOVE happy stories. Sometimes things are just meant to be and you have to get your heart broken to appreciate the good things to come. I can appreciate a good British accent myself, even if I am deaf.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

RC: Do you do that too? I find myself thinking about you guys a lot, wondering what you look and sound like. My happy ending is mostly happy, though not without its hiccups.

Queeny: I do smile every time I remember how we met. It's gotten me through some rough times.

Jenny: Exactly. Through the darkest hours during the time of my divorce, I remembered the wheel turns. And it does.

Snuffleupagus said...

So yes, I mean, are you happy now? It does sound like a fairy tale. Quite extraordinary really - that you should have moved your life for a guy you didn't really know. But then maybe that's what happens when you find the One! (I have no idea!) Great stuff. And thanks for letting me know it was here!

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

Snuffy: While hubby and I hadn't spent a lot of time together, we did know each other quite well through our letters and phone calls.Yes, I am happy. All relationships have their ups and downs, and ours has too. Mostly this is due to our differences -- different cultural backgrounds, he's a saver, I'm a spender, he works away all week. But these differences also keep it interesting and fresh.