Ten years ago today, on April 8th, 2011, I met my wife for the first time at a dive bar in Hong Kong called Al’s diner. We immediately hit it off. The evening ended with us dancing to a number of 80’s classics.
Despite several jello shots it took me a while to work up the courage to kiss her. I knew she was special and wanted to make sure I picked the right moment. The cheesy 80’s playlist, however, didn’t exactly set the mood.
At a certain point I told myself whatever song comes up it doesn’t matter, it’s now or never. And so, as one forgettable tune ended, with my heart in my throat, I met her eyes, leaned in and kissed her.
Just as soon as we locked lips, Madonna’s, “Like A Virgin,” came blaring from the jukebox.
“Like a virgin Touched for the very first time Like a virgin When your heart beats Next to mine Whoa…”
A moment of classy romance it was not! It certainly wasn’t the song I would have chosen. Still, I had to commend the Gods on their sense of humour. We both had a good laugh about it.
Ultimately, of course, the song didn’t matter. What really mattered was the ten years that followed.Those years have been extraordinary to say the least.
Together we’ve flown in hot air balloons, jumped out of aeroplanes, swam with whale sharks – to list just a few of our adventures. It was on a layover in Rome I realised I loved her as we cuddled while watching the sunset from the Spanish steps. (There are few moments I can think as perfect as that one.) It was on holiday in Myanmar that I proposed to her on the shores of Inle lake.
It was 4 years ago – exactly 6 years after we met – on April 8th, 2017, that we got married at a micro brewery here in Hong Kong. We figured, “Why bring the booze to the party when you can bring the party to the booze?”
It was epic.
The song we chose for our first dance? You guessed it. Definitely not Madonna’s, “Like A Virgin.” (We have some class guys and gals, come on.)
Actually our friends orchestrated a surprise flash mob to Justin Timberlake’s, “Can’t Stop The Feeling.” It was one of the many highlights that day. That song became our first as a married couple.
Fast forward 4 more years and here we are with two ridiculous boys to our names. The youngest having just turned 3 months. (Can you do the math?)
April 8th will always be the most important day of the year for me. Symbolically it represents everything that followed when we kissed for the very first time 10 years ago. The truly beautiful life that we have made together.
I often wonder what my life would have been like had I missed my opportunity that night. If I’d not made a move because of the song that was playing. (There’s a lesson here about waiting for the perfect moment.)
I look around and imagine my boys vanishing. The apartment I live in transforming. Perhaps I wouldn’t have stayed in my current job for as long as I have? Maybe I wouldn’t live in Hong Kong? Perhaps the picture would be markedly different? Or perhaps the picture would be similar but with different faces?
One things for damn sure, the picture couldn’t be any better.
As I come back to reality and realise that none of it was a dream. That my reality – my unbelievably beautiful radiant wife, the now extraordinary mother to our two gorgeous silly boys – is the dream. I realise I wouldn’t change it for the world. I wouldn’t even change that song.
To my dear wife, when it comes to you, I regret nothing. (Although I’m not giving you anymore children.)
Happy Anniversary Gorgeous
With All My Love
Your Very Silly Husband X