Friday, February 14, 2014

How I Met Your Mother.

I stumbled into your mother’s life and nearly fell into her campfire sometime after midnight that April night.

It was an unseasonably cool Florida evening; friends surrounded me and small blazes dotted the woods around us as live music meandered through the smoky pines. Among the various gatherings of happy faces: colorful hammocks, tents of every size, pickup trucks and the occasional stray peacock provided margins.

It was the first night of the music festival when I walked into a neighboring campsite and introduced myself only to her, despite a dozen of her fellow revelers looking on with mild amusement. Her smile transcended the central blaze of the circle and I was compelled to tell her who I was and inquire where she was from. I learned she was from Tampa and I proclaimed far too loudly, "I'm from St. Pete!" as if this fact would create an irresistible bond between us. She informed me with a playful smirk I had introduced myself no less than half a dozen times prior. Giggles intruded from the onlookers. Perhaps, I was trapped against this event horizon, destined to relive the last 5 minutes for eternity.

Looking back, I can imagine much worse moments to experience in endless loop.

That weekend, we strolled about the grounds with unshakable grins, holding hands and laughing freely. Our first kiss stunned me within sight of a small pond. In the center, a simple aerator we referred to generously as a fountain. On the shore a tiny chapel, hardly more than a shed in size, yet complete with gilded doors, a cathedral ceiling, and stained glass windows. Together, we made light of the festival romance; expecting it would fizzle with the last embers of a thousand bonfires as these flings often do when souls meet outside their reality. “We’ll always have the fountain,” I joked irreverently on more than one occasion and we cackled at the ridiculousness of it all.

A few years later, I proposed in that place and the following spring we were married in a chapel hardly large enough to hold a lawn tractor, much less a ceremony. Behind the grandiose hut, a little pond surrounded by Cypress trees, framed with Spanish moss and in the middle, an unassuming fountain. 

The Fountain
Our little chapel.


  1. Great chapel!
    I LedOL at the "half a dozen times" thing.

  2. I agree 100%. It's so nice to hear someone trumpeting the importance of having meaningful dialogue regardless of the difficulty of topic. It's unfortunate that there are many in your family that remain so close-minded, but I find it admirable that you're still able to love them even though they disagree with you...vehemently. That, to me, is the example of a person who will make an excellent parent and role model

  3. Loved hearing your "backstory" Amazing how we found our significant others. Thanks for sharing.

  4. What a sweet story, so lovingly told. Big smile from me. :)

  5. So did everyone else around that fire, Brian. Ha!

  6. Thanks a lot, Lorne, and thanks for stopping by. I enjoyed your story on the same topic as well!

  7. Life's little coincidences end up being pretty important I guess!

  8. Glad you liked it, I did too. ;-) Thanks for stopping by, Brent!