Goldfinch is coming to visit again! Yippee! Happy times ahead!!! He is on his way back from the mainland. I love that he calls Europe the mainland. Don’t you think that is gorgeous! It is one of the many things I love about Goldfinch. In all my life, I have never heard anyone else call Europe the mainland. He has been to three different European countries over the past few days, so as he has been doing lots of travelling, he may be tired and I intend to use that as an opportunity to spoil him!
I am have been preparing a delishy dishy…yum yum yum! And for a naughty pudding I am making this fruity-licious showstopper! (Courtesy of a Waitrose recipe card.) He is going to love me!!! Seriously!
It is often said that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. How much truth to that saying there is, could be a lively subject for conversation. Truth be told, not many of my male family members or friends would disagree.
I want to tell you a story about a married couple I met a few years ago. I have only ever met them once. Sadly I have forgotten their names completely. We were guests for dinner at the home of a mutual friend. I have not forgotten the impression they made on me though, nor the story of how they got together.
They really did seem like best friends. They were both slightly “quirky”. They both wore odd socks. They were both a bit plain physically…I don’t mean that unkindly. They just were both as normal looking as you can imagine. Neither would stand out in a crowd. Both had mousy coloured hair. Both had plain faces, both wore spectacles that didn’t particularly suit them. They both had a rather plain style of dress and wooly jumpers with “patterns” – you know the type I mean don’t you! They looked comfortable rather than stylish. They both had the same funny mannerisms. I was thoroughly entertained by them.
The way they communicated was gorgeous to watch. They had merged into a single entity I felt. One starting a sentence and the other finishing it. One starting a story and the other taking over and then passing different parts of the tale back and forth to each other. Their continual glances and smiles to each other. The nudges and winks they shared. They had been married for seven years. She seemed quite young to me. They confirmed she was eighteen years of age when they married. As is often the case with an obviously happily married couple, someone in our dinner party asked the question, “How did you two meet?”
Allow me to relate what I can remember as they told their tale in tandem.
He was living all the way down south in Penzance…right down at the tip of the toe of England. She was living way up in the north, near Inverness, almost as far away as you can get from where he was. He went on holiday to stay with a friend he used to work with…that friend was living in Scotland. His ex-workmate was a friend of Little Miss Inverness’ brother. Her brother invited his friend and Mr Penzance to their family home for dinner with their family.
Little Miss Inverness was not with her family for dinner that night. She had arranged to go out with one of her own friends. They were going out to the cinema to watch a film and then she would sleep at her friend’s house. So she missed him completely.
The following day was a Saturday. Little Miss Inverness came home and went up to her room with her bag. Then she came down the stairs of the family home and low and behold, there he was – Mr Penzance! She had no idea who he was. She told us that the moment she laid eyes on him she just knew she was going to marry him.
Mr Penzance explained to us all that the night before when he had been there for dinner with her family he had forgotten something…I can’t remember now whether it was his wallet, or phone, or his jacket. But whatever he had forgotten had caused him to return the following day. He was sitting on a sofa in their living room waiting for her brother.
So they met, they chatted. Nothing happened. He want home to Cornwall. He did not think of her. She thought of him though. But she did not do anything about it.
A year later, Mr Penzance moved to Inverness. He moved because he had been offered great job and his ex-workmate said he could share his accommodation, that it would be a help actually to have someone to share the rent with. He certainly did not move to Scotland on account of the brief meeting he had with Little Miss Inverness.
Well, as soon as she found out that he was living in Inverness, she wasted no time. She said she did everything she could to make it clear she liked him. She frequently made sure he was invited round for dinner with her family. She would dress up and wear make-up. She would douse herself with perfume and spend hours on her hair. She bought him gifts, she wrote him cards, she knitted a scarf for him, she baked cakes and shortbread and brownies and gave them to him. She said she was unashamedly determined to catch his eye. She did everything she could to win him. He was very pleased with all of the gifts he received and always thanked her for these kind acts…and yet he did not seem to be responding. He did show any signs of having more than a usual friendliness towards her. There was no sign of any romantic feelings developing. He never asked her out.
Eventually, someone had a word with him. I cannot remember now who it was. It might have been her Dad, it might have been the the flatmate he was sharing the rent with. Someone spoke to Mr Penzance and asked him what he was going to do about Little Miss Inverness. He said he was rather confused. He had not thought of her at all romantically. Neither was he thinking of anyone else romantically at the time. He was just kind of floating along. He felt as if he was still settling in to life in Scotland. Mr Penzance told us that he had really just thought she was a nice girl and her family were also kind and hospitable. He was grateful for all the help after moving across the country and being so far away from his own family.
It was a surprise to be told that he could not let her go on giving him all these delicious bakes and other tokens of her affection without responding in some way. If he felt he could not return the interest she was expressing in him, he should let her know in a kind way, so that she did not feel too much disappointment after all of the gestures she had extended to him. Or, if there was a possibility that he might be able to develop a fondness for her, well, he should take some action.
Mr Penzance told us he felt like a bit of an idiot now that what was glaringly obvious to everyone else was pointed out to him. It made him feel he ought to pull his socks up a bit. So, he spoke to her Dad and cautiously mentioned that he thought perhaps Little Miss Inverness might be sweet on him. Her father laughed heartily confirming that Mr Penzance was all that his daughter seemed to think and talk about these days. Her father indicated that it would be fine for Mr Penzance to ask his daughter out.
So, he asked her out. Where did they go on their first “date”? They went to the cinema to see a film. I might be wrong but I think it was the film “Chicken Run”. How romantic! “I don’t want to be a pie, I don’t like gravy!”
So that was the start of their courting days…and it was not many months before a wedding was planned. Little Miss Inverness became Mrs Penzance. Cute hey!
By the time I met them at the dinner our friend hosted that evening, they had lived a few years in Scotland and a few years in Cornwall. Now they were in London and they loved it. I was sorry I didn’t cross paths with them again. I often asked my friend about them and she said they were still very happy in London.
Well, every couple has their own story…that was their tale…and I found it charming!
There are so many sources of advice which would tell you never to do what she did! I have friends who have analysed all of the glossy magazines and websites on how to make a man fall for you…I am sure they would be horrified if they heard that she contradicted all of the tips from these sources. Her attempts to win his heart were juxtaposed to all of the advice published on catching his eye. Love it! (Apologies for another desperate attempt to be in one of the last Daily Prompt line-ups!)
But for Little Miss Inverness, it was the obvious thing to do…to leave him in absolutely no doubt how she felt.
I am going to make sure my Goldfinch is in absolutely no doubt how much I adore him! He is a prime specimen of a man, he has a wonderful heart, and he also he has a stomach that loves my cooking and baking…I am going to head for his heart by going straight for his stomach! Unashamedly in love!!