Site Meter Elsie's Space: Valentine Past
Location: New England, United States

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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Valentine Past

It was long ago, but I remember almost every detail. It was a long-distance romance, and he had asked me to go "up north" for the weekend to celebrate Valentine's Day. I thought this gesture meant big things for us, and I was more excited than I could ever possibly describe now. Being the worrier that by nature I am, I fretted over the weather. Were we crazy planning a romantic mid-winter get-away in the northeast? Would he be delayed or, worse yet, have to cancel completely? No. There was none of that.

He arrived at the airport on schedule. I still remember watching him descend the stairs from the plane (there were no jetways at our little airport in those days). His smile was at least as big as mine. I could see he was happy. He had no idea I was even watching him. As he came through the door his smile grew bigger. And with one small kiss and one giant hug, I was able to relax. I knew that this was going to be the best weekend of my life!

We took a quick stop by my apartment to drop off his things. We'd planned to go out to dinner and then leave first thing in the morning. Dinner was romantic and lovely, as things usually were with him. And having not seen each other for a number of weeks, love was in the air. That was until he suddenly, unexpectedly jumped up and raced to the bathroom. Something definitely wasn't right. "Hey, are you all right?" "Yeah, fine." And then I heard that unmistakable sound. He definitely wasn't okay. What seemed like hours later, he finally emerged from the bath -- greener than I'd ever seen him, sweating as if he'd just run a marathon. "I'm not feeling too great." "Yes. I can see that. Go climb into bed and I'll get you a ginger ale. Maybe that'll help." When I returned he was greener and sweatier than before. "I don't think I can sleep on this thing." Uh oh. I had one of those swishy swooshy waterbeds (stop laughing, it was 1986). I understood completely, and we moved him onto the couch. Much better. Thinking it was possible that he'd imbibed a bit too much at dinner, I felt it likely that we'd still be off to the north in the morning.

Wrong. He didn't seem worse in the daylight, but he certainly wasn't any better. He was really sick. Regretfully, I called and cancelled our reservation at what looked to be a fairy tale spot with a fireplace in our room. Oh well, I was just happy to spend time with him. Through thick and thin. For better or worse (and how I was hoping for that in those days). I pampered him throughout the day. It wasn't so bad. Until....I started not feeling so great myself. I thought, "No, I'll be okay, it's just sympathy nausea." Wrong again. Before long I was the one in the bath becoming more friendly than I ever wished to be with the toilet. Now what? "I think I've got what you've got. I need to go to bed. Yell if you need anything." And off I went. But THE BED. Crap. I couldn't sleep on the fool thing either. So I dragged the pillows and covers onto the floor and slept there. On his way to the bath my companion saw me there on the floor. "What are you doing?" "I can't sleep on the bed either." "You take the couch." "No. I'm okay." When he came by again he urged me a second time to take the couch. I told him, "I think I'll just go to my parents' and sleep there. You'll be okay without me?" "No. I'm leaving. You are never going home to your mother on account of me." And before too long a cab was honking in the parking lot. Off he went to a nearby hotel.

We talked a couple of times over the next day or two. Neither of us was in the mood to chat. Monday rolled around quickly. He stopped by on his way back to the airport. A quick kiss to the forehead and a small bouquet of flowers and he was off, back to that other ocean.

Our weekend did not turn out at all as I had planned, hoped, or dreamed. But I've never forgotten it. And neither did he. Oh sure, there have been many more Valentine's Days since. Those I've shared with my husband have been the best, but none have been more memorable than my Valentine Virus weekend.


Blogger Liz said...

That is hilarious! Sea-sick on a water-bed too.

But just think: if he'd been fine you might never have married your husband so, out of it, you get a wonderful story and a fantastic husband!

(I'm assuming that Valentine was before your husband came along.)

3:43 AM  
Blogger Elsie said...

It's funny now. It sure didn't seem so then. And yes, this was years before I met husband (ex-husband too). Valentine and I did remain friends for twenty years after this, so it all worked out in the end.

6:59 AM  

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