Monday, May 19, 2014

May 19, 1994 - Suddenly the Sagittarius

Twenty years ago today I met a man.

My friend Zoe said she knew this one was different because of the way I said it.

I was in Victoria, British Columbia, traveling alone and minding my own business. I went to a Greek restaurant the first night, and it was pretty early so I was the first one there. Soon afterward, a single man came in, and I could tell the host was making a joke about seating him with the single woman – me. Yeah, ha ha, very funny. Anyway, they seated him a few tables behind me. I got my moussaka, which was cold in the middle so I sent it back to get reheated. The place started filling up a bit, and I finished my meal and left.

The next night I decided to go to an Italian place. When I went in I was seated in a little alcove at the back, but I asked if I could sit further up where I could look out the window. So they moved me. Awhile later a single man was seated at the table next to me – they had also tried to seat him at the back, but he asked to sit nearer the window. When I got my meal he leaned over and said, in a lovely British-accented voice, "I hope your meal is warmer than it was last night." I did a kind of double take, and said "Were you..?" He nodded and said Yes, he had seen me at the Greek restaurant the night before. Yada, yada, yada, a little chit chat, and then he left me alone to eat in peace. When he got his meal, I noticed he had ordered the same as me, so I commented on that. A little more chit chat, then back to our privacy. By the end of the meal we started chatting again, asking where each other was from and all that, so he asked if I'd like to go have a drink. I had to weigh up whether I was going to miss watching Seinfeld back in my hotel room, but I figured I could catch it in reruns. (In fact, I didn't see that particular episode, "Even Steven," until 2007.) The hostess and waitress were grinning and nodding at us as we left together.

We walked, we talked, we had a drink, we wandered through The Empress Hotel.

Mr. S at the Empress Hotel

We exchanged addresses and decided we would meet for breakfast before I went to the ferry and headed home to Seattle. He was in Victoria for one more day before flying back to the UK after being in Canada for a month.

me in front of Victoria harbor - you can't see the lights of the Parliament building behind me

We met for breakfast and talked some more. He walked me back to my car, and we hugged and said goodbye. I got on the ferry and felt so sad - I'd just met this man, but my life already felt empty without him. We started writing to each other right away, and he eventually phoned me. More letters, more phone calls, then trips across the pond. A little more than a year and a half later he proposed by sending a humongous flower arrangement to work with a note – Please marry me. I replied via telegram – Yes. And the rest is history!

the proposal bouquet

Except there's all the spooky, psychic, Holy-Shit! stuff that surrounded the whole story. Do you want to hear that? Do you have time?

Well, okay then.

I had been to see a psychic astrologer few months before. He told me I would meet a Sagittarian man, and that a Gemini woman would be involved somehow. Right before I went to Victoria I had been staying with a friend on Orcas Island in Washington State. I actually rearranged my travel dates to accommodate her, and although that might not have made a difference, she is a Gemini. So when I met Mr. S, I managed to steer the conversation to astrological signs, and I found out he was a Sagittarius! My jaw almost dropped.

The night we met, I dreamed that I was on a movie set in an Asian land. The setting included a pergola with ornate carved and painted designs, and there were also silk banners. The predominant colors were red and yellow. There were lots of actors (including Meryl Streep) who were in a scene for a group wedding. I stepped up to the pergola to be married, and Mr. S was by my side. In the dream I was thinking very clearly, "This isn't a movie, this is real."

Mr. S had also been to see a psychic. As soon as he walked in the room she said she had an impression of lenses. He'd been working with cameras and video production ever since video cameras were made, so he was inclined to listen to what she said after that. She told him America would figure prominently in his life, and she mentioned a name that began with V - Valerie or Victoria, he's not sure which one it was.

He was at a turning point in his life, and he got this very clear mental message telling him to go to Canada. He started planning a trip, and he received a tax refund for the exact amount of money he figured he would need.

The night we met, he dreamed that we were in a red sports car together, driving away from some ruins.

After we'd been writing to each other for about a month, he surprised me by phoning. He called on the day my favorite uncle had died. We talked for about 45 minutes – I hate to think what it cost. More letters, phone calls, trips back and forth.

I spent six months living with him in England before we got married, the longest I was allowed to stay as a tourist. He was working on a video program about a Buddhist group who lived in an old stately home. I was with him on the shoot, and then we spent a weekend reviewing all the footage. I realized I was looking at ornate Asian designs in carvings, paintings, and silky fabrics, mostly in red and yellow - exactly like in the dream I'd had on the night we met!

The date we picked for our wedding turned out to be the birthday of my late uncle - I didn't know it until after the date was set. We were married at my parents' house, and then I moved to England.

In 2001 we were back in Victoria. We did a home exchange that included use of a car - a red sports car.

2001 in front of the Empress Hotel
And today is Victoria Day in Canada - is that perfect or what!

Just one other thing I have to tell you – after the first night Mr. S had seen me eating alone in Victoria, he stalked me. He figured I was traveling alone and would be eating out again, so the second night he was actually looking for me.

And thank heavens he found me!



  1. Happy Anniversary! what a cool story of how you met. :)

  2. Thanks for giving me goosebumps! What a lovely love story! I mean of the best! Happy Anniversary you two!

  3. This needs to be a movie! Stat! You both look so tremendously in love and your love story just keeps getting better and better. Happy anniversary to you both!

  4. What a wonderful story, Val! Happy anniversary to you both - many more happy years!!! Hugs!

  5. Happy Anniversary to you both! What a fantastic story. I got shivers just from the first bit, but stared at the computer screen agog over the second part! I love that last photo of the two of you. You look so in love. Thanks for sharing this lovely story!

  6. P.S. Dying to know which restaurants!

    1. I can't remember the names or even the streets, but I know the Italian one was not there when we went back in 2001.

  7. I got goosebumps reading this, I am genuinely blown away by your story, it's incredible and amazing, you two were meant to be together, Happy Anniversary! x x x

  8. Thank heavens, indeed! What a lovely story. Happy anniversary. Here's to many, many more. xxx

  9. This is so amazing----what a story! Congratulations <3 <3 <3

  10. What a cool story! It was truly in the stars...

  11. I wouldn't recommend to most people that they marry their stalker but in this case it was the best thing you could do!!! What a wonderful story. I love happy psychic stories like this. You are the sweetest couple. I think even the cynical cast of Seinfeld would be touched by this. XXXOOO

  12. That is one of the best stories about meeting your beloved that I've heard. I love the creepy-cool psychic aspects of it. Congratulations on 20 years together - hope you have at least 20 more!

  13. What a fabulous story, Val! Happy anniversary to you and your British stalker! xxxx

  14. Wow, great story Val. Que sera sera!!!

  15. That is truly an amazing story, Val. You and your man were definitely meant to be! Happy belated anniversary! Xo

  16. Your stars were definately aligned, such a great story.

  17. This is so cool!!! Happy Anniversary!!

  18. So romantic. Happy Anniversary.

  19. What a brilliant story! I love that it took place in one of the nicest places on earth... Victoria. I was just there. We watched the Victoria Day parade.

    Happy Anniversary to a couple that was definately destined to be.



Enough about me - let's talk about you!