4 Feb 2014

A Big Friendly Giant thank you. And a hello.

Bonefish Grill - BFG




And the occasion? It was twenty nine years ago, on 3rd February 1985, that I met Tony on a blind date. I knew by the time my main course arrived (Lobster Thermidor - you knew I'd remember what I ate, right?) that I'd fallen in love with him and could feel a small whirlwind of panic spinning around my solar plexus as he told me about his future work and travel plans. I'm not going to see him for over 3 months! Why are you being so stupid? a rational brain cell responded. You've only just met him.  

How many more years do you think we'll have? I asked him last night. 

I think I'm going to live until I'm 88, he said.

Can you make it 91? I asked. Then we can celebrate 50 years together.

Okay.

Of course, neither of us can really know the when. Or the how or why. There's a pop-psychology/philosophy question that bounces around the internet: if you could know the date of your death, would you want to? The argument for is that we would fully live every moment known to remain. The argument against is that we would fully live every moment known to remain in a state of anxiety.

It's impossible to keep up that original level of all-consuming passion and enthusiasm for each other after years and years of living with another person, with the snips and irritations of daily life, the griefs and upsets, the blames and resentments we have to negotiate. But something else arrives: something quieter, something deeper. John Armstrong in his book, Conditions of Love, The Philosophy of Intimacy says: Our collective understanding of love is beguiled by love’s first moments; and yet it is continuing, long-term love that we all want. Real love is love that lasts and withstands the difficulties which a prolonged relationship inevitably brings. 


Happy Anniversary, Tone. Hello, I said to you when I opened the door 29 years ago and knew in the moment I looked at you that something momentous was about to happen. Hello again.