It was our 9th anniversary this month. 9 years since Husband and I met in a nightclub in our old university town. 9 years since our first date. We celebrated with fish and chips and a bottle of champagne. The same meal we ate when we got engaged. Same champagne producer. Same champagne that we had at our wedding.
Valentines Day, well, that was our 8th Valentines Day. The first time around, we'd only known each other a week. Which was *way* to early to be doing things like celebrating V-day. We met on a Thursday (identifiable only because we know what nightclub we met on therefore we knew what day of the week it was and each club had a different student night) during an evening which I can only remember in snap shots. We met over a cigarette. Romantic. (I wanted one, asked a friend for one I spotted on the dance floor, Husband offered me one of his). Those were the days when you could and did smoke in clubs and thinking about it now, it just seems so disgusting that I though nothing of dropping the butt on the floor. We danced. Kissed. Outside afterwards he offered me his jumper. It was grey. Fuzzy. He was wearing a white shirt. I was wearing a black lace top with jeans that didn't fit and wedge heeled sandals. I didn't want the night to end, so we went back to mine. Talked. Slept. The next morning. [Ok, afternoon, who am I kidding] we sat on my stairs as he rolled a cigarette and put his number into my phone. A pink sparkly nokia to match my Rancid band hoody. . Oh yes, and the eye liner. Those were the days. His jeans had the inside seams cut, he was wearing brown boat shoes. I hated his name. But not him. A few days later, he texted. Can it really have been a few days, I can't imagine how I didn't call him. I remember the text. He called me honey. I danced around my room. He invited me to his for supper.
Which, working out the days, must have been 9 years this Tuesday or Wednesday. History doesn't relate if it was the Friday or the Saturday. But I remember the meal. Chicken stir fry, with wine and proper coffee afterwards. I'm not sure what impressed me the most - the fact he could cook or the fact he made proper coffee. I was so nervous I found it hard to eat. But we started talking and we haven't stopped since. It was perfect. I can't believe that was 9 years ago.
This year I ate alone on Valentine's Day. Our first though, he asked our friends that he lived with to go out. We'd been together a year, just celebrated my 21st birthday. I wore 'nice' underwear and boots. Made a real effort (looking back I can't believe what I was thinking - but all shoes in the early 2000s were hideous. Not just mine). I got a taxi. He cooked me supper - I can't remember what. I gave him a card. He didn't. Much like this year. A few weeks later we went to Paris. Drank red wine in cheap restaurants and ate steak and sat for 4 hours, confusing the waiter by ordering tea between courses. Smoked cigarettes and drank coffee in cafes. Drank cocktails full of sparklers.Went to galleries. Walked and talked. We're going back to Paris in April. Where we will take up smoking again, and sit for hours in cafes, talking and walking. We'll be together for almost 2 weeks and I can. not. wait.