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This is the first year that @1967mustangman and I will be together in person for Valentine’s Day. The first year of our relationship was long distance, and our trips to see each other were determined by our grad school schedules.
Granted, I think Valentine’s Day is a stupid holiday that usually ends up encouraging men to spend ridiculous amounts of money on flowers that are going to end up in the trash out of a sense of obligation and single women to drink heavily while contemplating “I don’t need a man! I’ll get a puppy. A puppy won’t argue with me about how to fold a fitted sheet or cheat on me with his ugly executive assistant.”
My dislike of the made-up holiday aside, this is the first time in years that I will be with someone for Valentine’s Day — should be awesome, right? This year probably won’t be quite as romantic though as last year. Here’s the schedule for tonight:
- 5:45 – VC makes a nice dinner, but doesn’t open a bottle of wine because we both have to work tomorrow.
- 6:15 – Mustangman comes rushing over from work, which he will undoubtedly gotten out late from because someone always stops him on his way out.
- 6:18 – We eat. “You might want to only eat half and take the rest for lunch tomorrow, since I didn’t make anything to take for lunch.”
- 6:45 – We leave to go run errands before the stores close. There’s a big sale on at Macy’s, and it ends today.
- 8:45 – Return home. Do stuff around the house. Do cat control, because it’s the time of day that Marcello gets squirrely and starts destroying things.
- 9:30 – Mustangman goes home. I go to bed.
Not very romantic. However, last year was romantic, even with thousands of miles separating us.
For the 15 months we spent doing long distance, Skype and FaceTime were our best friends. Every evening we would get on Skype for 3-5 hours, essentially spending the evening together. We would keep the line open while we were studying or cooking or cleaning. It gave a sense of normalcy and intimacy even though we were on opposite sides of the country. A couple days before Valentine’s Day last year, Mustangman said “What do you want to do for Valentine’s Day? I feel like we should do something.” I looked confused for a minute. “I’m not sure what we can do with you in Portland and me here…” He suggested we have a Skype date. We would both make the same meal at our respective houses and “share” a meal together while on Skype. “How about doing some filets? Filets would be good.” Yes, filets would be good, but I was a poor grad student, and the idea of spending $15 on a single piece of steak did not sound good. Initially I said yes, but then the day of Valentine’s Day, I told him I was just going to use up some chicken I had in the fridge.
“Babe, I really don’t need to be spending the money on expensive steaks right now. I’m just going to have some chicken.”
“Hold on … just hold on.”
“I’m going to the store right now. If I see something on sale that looks nice, I’ll get it.”
At Publix, I walked up and down the meat department looking for something cheap. I noticed a young man with a camo Tennessee Vols hat and the green Shipt t-shirt I had started seeing more and more of recently. The guy was talking on his phone loudly when he reached into the meat case, grabbed what he was looking for, and walked on. Mustangman was on the phone with me as meandered around the store.
“Hey babe, are you going to be home soon?”
“As soon as I finish getting what I need.”
“So, maybe in like 30 minutes?”
“Ok, just don’t buy any meat.”
I got home, unpacked my groceries, and within 15 minutes there was a knock on my door. When I opened the door, that same young man from Publix was standing there, grocery bags in hand.
“Are you VC?”
“Your boyfriend, Mustangman, wanted me to bring you some things on his behalf for Valentine’s Day. Here you go.”
In the bags from Publix were two rib eyes, two dozen red roses, dinner rolls, and two boxes of Earl Grey tea. That night, we ate a romantic dinner together over Skype, and finished the evening by watching Dangerous Beauty at the same time on our own computers. “I wanted to be able to have a romantic night with you, even if you’re in Alabama, so I went online and found a grocery delivery service.”
It was one of the most romantic times in our relationship. I think this one’s a keeper.