Where would real love be without stories?
Just look over your shoulder at the past. What do you see? Not a world of atoms and molecules but a world of stories. From ten thousand years ago to today. Just stories! Stories of adventures, conquests and love. Stories are to the human heart what food is to the body.
A box of chocolates, a bunch of flowers and dinner at a fancy restaurant are NOT romantic.
Romantic means “story-worthy.” We don’t fall in love with other people; we fall in love with the feelings we get when we are with them. We turn those feelings into words and carry them around as stories. As the stories are told, emotions unfold and grow and our hearts are filled with real romance.
Gerard and Dina
Hats off to Gerard for the unforgettable way he popped the question to Dina. After a romantic dinner at a lakeside restaurant on Georgian Bay, he took her out in a rowboat to watch the sunset. Just as the sun was sinking below the horizon, he presented Dina with a ring and asked her to marry him. There were tears and hugs as she said yes. Dina didn’t notice the flashlight Gerard had in his hand. As they hugged, he surreptitiously switched it on and waved it toward the shore. It was the signal for three of his friends to set off the $200 worth of fireworks he’d brought in, lighting up the sky and reflecting off the lake around them. What a sight it was. Dina is visual—she can be especially stirred by the way things look.
Oleg and Anna
Oleg asked Anna if she’d mind coming along to a local marina with him after work one evening. He had to deliver something to a friend who was sailing in from across the lake that afternoon. He picked her up and they drove together.
Oleg took a soft canvas sports bag out of the trunk and they walked over to the transients’ dock, but Oleg’s friend hadn’t arrived yet. He suggested they sit on the dock, dangling their feet in the water. As they sat in the sun on the gently rocking dock and waited, Oleg said, “You know this is the exact spot where we met a year ago?”
“Yes, I know.” Anna replied, and wrapped her arms around him. After a few seconds Oleg unzipped the canvas bag. Inside was a bouquet of yellow roses, a bottle of champagne, two glasses, and a plate of hors d’oeuvres. “There’s no friend,” he confessed, smiling. “Happy first anniversary.”
Antonio and Susan
Antonio, who ran a small art gallery, had met Susan, a teacher, almost a year ago when he’d gone with a group of friends to a performance by the Mexican National Ballet Company. Since then, Mexico, Mexican food, and all things Mexican had become romantic notions for them. One sunny afternoon, as Susan led her class out of a field trip to the National Gallery, she saw Antonio waiting on the sidewalk, holding a “Happy Birthday, Susan” sign across his chest. With him was a five-piece mariachi band that he’d hired, trumpets and all. Susan is auditory; she is especially moved by the way things sound. That was 15 happy years ago.
Jeanette and Thomas
Jeanette blew all her savings to take Thomas, her race car enthusiast boyfriend to see the Monte Carlo Rally. They are getting married next year.
Kayla and Omar
Kayla had seven wild pairs of boxer shorts delivered to her boyfriend by courier on Valentine’s Day, when he was away on tour.
Romance is probably the opposite of common sense
Sometimes it’s worth throwing practicality aside to show the one we love how much we care. The best romantic gestures require thought and effort. (What does an e-mail greeting card say about the sender’s commitment and resourcefulness?) But that thought and effort are usually well worth it in terms of keeping the relationship vibrant and happy.