I am a lover of romance--be it in books, movies, theatre, art, or real life. Romance makes one's soul smile. I guess that's why I love writing romances.
One of the ladies in Hillcity Writers said I should share on this blog how Calvin and I met. Our story is unique only to us, for all of you have a uniquely wonderful story of how you met your mate. For us, it was match.com. In a moment of weakness created by extreme loneliness (I'd been divorced for 10 years), I filled out a profile questionnaire for match.com.
As soon as I hit the submit button, the right half of my brain screamed, "Are you nuts? What were you thinking putting your information on the Internet?"
"I was lonely," whispered the left half of my brain.
"Lonely and stupid. Just watch! Every nut in the continental United States will contact you."
"Think they'll be handsome?" the left side of my brain sighed.
Well, the right side of my brain was not entirely right. I had nuts contacting me from all over the world--Algeria, Shanghai, Iceland. Some were quite graphic in what they wanted. One man was looking for a woman to spank him while he wore Pampers. Another wanted to shave my privates (I kid you not!). And one guy sent me an email with one important, earth-shattering question: What size bra do you wear? Yes, folks, if there is a nutso-whacko out there, he will find me.
I did meet some very nice gentlemen, lonely just like me. I also met some married stinkers. Finally I stopped hoping and gave up on finding someone. Instead I bought a throw pillow with a skeleton sitting on a park bench wearing pearls, heels and a wide-brimmed hat. Its caption read, Waiting for Mr. Right.
Then one day Calvin saysheyed into my mailbox on a jazz beat and a smile. He'd read my profile, he said, and found it interesting. He saw where I'd majored in English in college; so did he. In fact, he taught English for 40 years. He saw where I dabbled in writing; he'd written 2 novels and was working on another. I checked boxes indicating that I like bookstores and flea markets, so did he. Would I be interested in striking up a dialog? So, our courtship via the Internet began.
I lived in southern Pennsylvania. He lived in Columbia, Maryland, about 75 miles away. We progressed from emailing through the security of match.com's blind system to exchanging personal email addresses to instant messaging for hours every day to late night phone calls. Three months later, we met at a Barnes & Noble in Columbia. Calvin was waiting at the double doors, holding a bouquet of pink roses.
A year to the day from his first email, we were married. He was 71 and I was 55. That was 7 years ago.
At first glance, we are opposites. He is black--or as he likes to say, polished chestnut. I am pale and freckled. He is tall and thin. I am...well...I am a fifty-gallon drum in flip-flops. But we share the same faith, the same love of family, the same love of literature and writing. In areas I am strong, Calvin is weak. His strengths erase my many weaknesses. We laugh at the same things and cry over sad news and inspiring stories. Facing the sometimes cruel world is easier because we do so holding hands. I admire and respect him, just as he does me. We are two halves of a whole, grasping with both hands and open hearts the time we have left together. Calvin is my hero, my best friend, my heart-mate.
What's your romance story?