Thursday, February 14, 2013

Our First Valentine's Day Together







We attended a very conservative Christian college in Saskatchewan. Boys were not permitted on the girls' floor.  A central lounge area and porch separated the dorms. To contact someone from the opposite sex, you asked someone entering the dorm to take a message. No cell phones or personal computers back then.

On Valentine's Day, which happened to fall on a Saturday that year, I was in my room when I heard someone in the hall calling my name. I poked my head out the door and the messenger handed me a single red rose and a card. Other girls experienced the same, but I remember most of the girls in the dorm coming by to see MY card because it was so different, and almost risqué - referring to kisses and all. The inside of the card reads, "But you can keep trying."

That night we attended a concert in Regina, about an hour's drive away. Back then a date with just the two of us counted for more than a double date, and date points were strictly rationed by the month. We had saved enough points for a "just-the-two-of-us" date and planned to have dinner out before the concert. 

En route to town, we saw a fellow classmate's car pulled over beside the road. Two couples stood beside it looking lost. We knew we had to stop and help, but we saw our "just-the-two-of-us" date disappearing fast. Sure enough, the car couldn't be started. We offered to take the couples into town and to drop them off wherever they wanted to have dinner, then pick them up again and take them to the concert. Being polite young Canadians, they insisted that wherever we were going was fine with them. 

It wasn't fine with us. We wanted "just-the-two-of-us" for dinner. But Tim headed the car in the direction of our intended restaurant.

As we drove along, one of our passengers said sotto voce to another, "Isn't that where we were going to eat?"

Tim overheard, turned as soon as he could, and before anyone could say, "happy valentine's day," our erstwhile passengers were standing in front of their restaurant and we had arranged to pick them up to take them to the concert. We carried on to our own dinner à deux, glad for the escape and feeling only slightly guilty at ditching our companions.

Last week, while rummaging in a cupboard, I came across the old scrapbook containing the above page. No acid-free paper or tape. No fancy papers or stickers. The rose came wrapped in the green paper behind the card. The hearts were cut from some scrap. The caption is from a magazine. On the next page there is a placemat from the restaurant and ticket stubs from the concert. No words tell the story I've told here, but just looking at the pages brings it all back. I think of throwing away these old, crumbling scrapbooks, but I don't have the heart to do so. Maybe someday.

I'm so thankful for a love that has lasted a lifetime. I don't take it for granted. I know of so many aching hearts for whom such love does not exist. I have no secrets beyond mutual respect, shared values and a commitment to love even when love is not felt.

Happy Valentine's Day to my readers.

 



 

29 comments:

Pondside said...

Such a sweet story - one to tell and re-tell to those little granddaughters. There is a secret, and you told it - 'mutual respect, shared values and a commitment to love even when love is not felt.'

Monica said...

That album is beautiful- don't throw it away!! I did with some old ones, and I wish I could have them back!
xo

Andrea Dawn said...

I agree, don't throw it out! It not only documents a beautiful time in your life but it is also a snapshot of the time frame in history (no digital scrapping, no precut embellishments, just that which came from your own creativity). Lovely story, Lorrie. Happy Valentine's Day to you and Tim.

Elizabethd said...

What a lovely story, Lorrie. Keep your souvenirs.

Anneliese said...

Such a sweet story! A messenger ... sounds so romantic! I was looking for an old Valentines day card a few days ago as well... and stopped too soon... I know I kept some. When did they become so vintage like .. if you want to call the 70's vintage.

Vee said...

It is a wonderful love story and how brilliant you were to create those pages. I hope that they've got years and years left before you toss them out. Glad that you shared them here. Have a wonderful day...whom are you planning to leave at their own restaurant tonight?

Tammy@T's Daily Treasures said...

After keeping those pages for so long, and especially the fact that they bring back such vivid memories of that day, why would you ever want to throw them out? Such a lovely story of love in bloom. :) Best wishes and blessings, Tammy

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

A beautiful love story. I would love for you to link up at the "Be My Valentine" party. :)

My Little Home and Garden said...

That is a touching story, Lorrie. Perhaps it's wise to keep these scrapbook pages as they remind you of all the feelings you had for your young man, your husband.
-Karen

cucki said...

Such a sweet story
Love for you x

Millie said...

I chuckled as I read, because I think I might know the school!...or at least one very similar. Love your story!

Pamela Gordon said...

Lorrie, that is such a sweet story! You definitely should keep this scrapbook. It's too precious! Have a wonderful Valentine's Day/evening. Pam

Sheila said...

i enjoyed reading your Valentine's story. It is hard to say goodbye to treasured memories so why not keep them while you still enjoy them?

A Garden of Threads said...

Beautiful post Lorrie. Happy Valentine's Day.

materfamilias said...

Very sweet. My husband is away this week, so I wrote him an e-mail reminding him of our first Valentine's Day together, 40 years ago. Very different from yours, but still some of the same elements -- I'm really struck, for example, by what a difference a cellphone would have made to my story and yours. . .

ellen b. said...

So sweet and such a blessing for love to endure...

Cheryl said...

Oh, I love this sweet story...so glad you shared it! I was smiling as I read it. And then I got to the next to last paragraph, and I went from smiling at the story of two college students in love, to being moved at the story of lifelong love.

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

"Just the two of us" became a love of a lifetime and you've told it so beautifully dear Lorrie! My heart was skipping beats for you!
Please don't ever throw your precious scrapbook out...
Have you got a granddaughter? I'm sure she would love to have it.
hugs
Shane ♥


JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

Such a sweet story - I would never ever ever throw away the scrap books. I still have my wedding corsage - it dried in the refrigerator and is perfectly preserved - one day my children will look at it and still be amazed. This was our 50th Valentine's Day together - and Don proposed on that long ago Valentine's Day. Thanks for the great post.

Storybook Woods said...

Very sweet memories. This why I love holidays like Valentines, it reminds us of when we were young. Clarice

Lace hearts said...

What a lovely post and what precious memories.

Barbara said...

So agree with your last paragraph and stand amazed when I think we have lasted 53 years.

I went to an all girls very strict school where we hardly knew what boys were apart from my 3 brothers! Interesting read.

Alisa Noble said...

What a great story, Lorrie! Don't throw it away. Print this out and put it in the scrapbook. Your grand daughters will love this someday!

Brenda @ Its A Beautiful Life said...

And I can just about know which school that was.....I was there too, if it's the one just west of MJ.

Lovely story... lovely remembrances... lovely ending.



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Mary said...

Oh what a sweet story! Thanks so much for sharing your love at Thursday's Inspiration, Lorrie! xoxo

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thistlewoodfarm said...

Oh....I love this post! And what a sweet reminder.

Happy, happy Valentine's Day to you!

blessings,
karianne

Jill said...

What a great story. Don't throw the scrapbooks out...there are little grand children who need to hear these stories. :) Our January was like your last weekend to some degree with the respiratory influenza thrown in. Ugh.