The white fluffy bunny who lived in the cotton candy tree in the forest of shared feelings

I did promise my dad a post about the bunny, but maybe I'll skip it and give a Valentine's Day report instead.

Turns out that here in the blessed British Isles, they do not celebrate Valentine's Day properly in the schools. Americans (and Canadians?) will back me up here. When you're little Valentine's Day is this huge day-long party, and everyone brings Valentines for everyone else (the kind with Barbie and Shrek and stuff on the front) and you have your little mailbox on your desk, and during the big classroom Valentine's party everyone goes around and delivers them, and you eat candy and cupcakes and drink red Kool-Aid until you're sick, and you spend hours agonizing over whether the boy you like picked that Spiderman valentine especially with you in mind. ("Hmmm . . . Valentine, I'm stuck on you . . . there's a double meaning in that.")

During high school and college, however, it didn't work that way anymore--not unless you have cool friends & family who still buy Shrek Valentines and candy and give them away to everyone, which I have been lucky enough to have. Also I have a mommy who sends Valentines to us in the mail.

But, like, the romance part of Valentine's Day has always been a pretty nonexistent thing. There's a reason we call it Singles Awareness Day. And it's not like you want to go out on February 14th with your girlfriends--not when the streets and restaurants are full of an entire BYU campus worth of disgusting schmoopy couples who are all trying to prove to everyone around them that they are, in fact, The Most In-Love Couple on the Planet, and They Will Tounge Kiss Each Other Right There at the Table to Prove It. So all the reasonable single people (read: me, every single year) stay in with their girls and get takeaway and watch movies and eat lots and lots of chocolate and talk trash about how Valentine's Day is a stupid arbitrary notholiday invented by Hallmark, and how men are stupid for not dating us because we would be so much nicer to them than the mean skanks they're currently dating.

Only this year I got to have my first Valentine's Day as a Smug Dating Someone! Yipee!

I will do my best not to make anyone throw up their chocolate, but friends, it was lovely. WR's original plan was to take me to this pretty town called Stamford to spend the day on Saturday, but we ended up not being able to go. So instead he made reservations at a Thai restaurant, becuase he knows I love me some Thai food. I wore (yes, I'm going to tell you what I wore, so if you're not into such details then too bad for you, because this is MY day) my flowy red knee-length skirt and my black v-neck 3/4-sleeve top, also black heels and black nylons because my legs are scary white and also because it's England and cold. And I'm not drunk/stupid enough to wander around in February wearing one of those those little denim belts that girls here mistake for skirts.

Also WR gave me a present. Yay for presents! He gave me a book, which I would take over chocolate and flowers any day. It's Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino, who I've never heard of before but WR says he's great. Also it's about Venice, which I think is an absolutely gorgeous place that I would love to visit again. And the card was beautiful.

WR liked his gifts too. I got him the Dover edition of love poetry and made him a coupon book with vouchers for things like:

"Candlelit lasagna dinner"
"Hot chocolate at Border's"
"Nice long back rub"
"You get to pick the movie"
"Being as late as you want and [Nem] will not say a word"

I think he's the most excited about that last one.

Dinner was lovely--nearly all the restaurants in the town had pink and red balloons tied up around the tables. At the Thai House they played all the sappy romantic songs like "Dream a Little Dream of Me" and the theme from "Somewhere in Time," but then there was also "All By Myself" thrown into the mix. Don't ask me why. As I looked around I thought, "Huh. So this is what restaurants look like on Valentine's Day. Crazy." It's a small restaurant, and pretty much the entire place was full of couples. I ordered my favorite--masaman curry, with chicken satay as an appetizer. Also there were some Chinese-sounding dishes on the menu. WR got sweet & sour pork (cuz that's Thai) and chicken, egg & sweetcorn soup (ditto). English people with their sweetcorn. But it was really good, and he liked it his intro to Thai(ish) food. Also they gave all the ladies flowers at the end of their meals. Here's mine!

So. There's my story. I'll try to fit the fluffy bunny in next time.


April said... [reply]

Yay, I'm first!

I'm single, and I'm happy to say I didn't gag even one time while reading about your romantic day! How's that for personal growth?

Mostly I just laughed and nodded about your description of your previous Valentine's Days. So true.

And once in elementary school, I got a valentine from a boy that had an owl on it, and inside it said, "Valentine, I have my eye on you." I think we all know the significance there...

Kelly said... [reply]

What a beautiful flower!

amyjane said... [reply]

Aaaaaahhhh, sweet. I'm happy for your first dating Valentine's Day. I had my first mommy Valentines, wherein Sean brought home flowers and Macraoni Grill takeout and a romantic movie. Baby went to bed at 6:00 and we celebrated at home. Nice, albeit different from past years.

Spitfire said... [reply]

I'm am sure happy for you, nem! Yay! I thought that this would be my first valentines day NOT being single since. . .whenever, and wondered what it would be like. Turns out, V-day ain't so bad even when you are single! A certain individual we'll call "A" took me out for lunch and offered to take me purse shopping because he knows how badly I need a new one and apparently has located "the perfect place" with a huge selection. Then when I got home from work there was a nice single red rose waiting for me from a different dear friend of the male gender, complete with a very sappy and heart warming note! Then, I got to get off of work an hour early go snowboarding with a friend of the female gender at Beaver for only $5.00! It was a great day! And then I caught up on the phone with good some good friends and parents, ate donuts delivered by someone in our complex, and got to bed at a reasonable hour. Talk about a good v-day for the single!

CBH said... [reply]

This Valentine's Day I found that out that failed my chemistry test with flying colors, and how have the highest D+ in my class. So I spent most of the rest of yesterday going to the dentist, eating very large amounts of pizza, and sitting in random campus buildings until 11:30 P.M., thinking about the things I ought to be doing but had to motivation to do.

I am now going to write a history paper that is due in 2 hours.

The Walrus said... [reply]

Italo Calvino? "If upon a winter's night a traveller" is his most famous book (I think)- it's about a guy trying to find a second copy of an amazing book he bought, but that's been misprinted halfway (something like that) It's supposed to be fantastic.
Anywho, V-day celebrated by kiddies? Sounds like a whole lot of psychological harm to me.

Limon said... [reply]

That really is a beautiful flower. I wish I had thought to get one of those. And thought to have a girlfriend. Ugh. Stupid flower.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Yay, April's first and not gagging! And I totally think that boy was checking you out.

Thanks, Kelly! I just figured out that my digital camera has a setting for "Foliage". I've only had the thing for like 2 years now.

Amyj, I'm glad baby Patrick cooperated with your plans!

Well Spitfire, I'm glad you had a nice day. Only you could have a Singleton's Valentine's Day wherein one man takes you out to lunch and shopping and another one buys you flowers. Only you . . .

I'm sorry about the test, sweet boy. Good job on eating pizza, though!

Hi John! Yeah, another friend said she's read that book and loved it (the "On a Winter's Night" book). So I'll need to check that one out too. And psychological harm nothing. You're just sore because you missed out on 9 years of candy.

Yeah Limon, I hate it when I forget to do stuff too. Thanks for admiring my flower!

Miss Hass said... [reply]

I get to read lots of Italo Calvino in my Italian class this semester. It's really quite enjoyable.

I think that accurately describes how I feel about Valentine's Day.

Stupidramblings said... [reply]

Valentine's Day used to be SOOOOO great in gradeschool. Last year I tried to recreate the magic by taking 'Mary-Kate and Ashley' valentines to all of my friends. I even wrote on the back--using my left hand of course to recreate the true spirit of V-day. The gesture wasn't returned by any of my friends and I almost finished crying by the end of the week...

CoolMom said... [reply]

It's times like this when I realize how much I miss being the mother of elementary (and older) school age children. No buying of Valentines, so shopping for candy, no baking of decorated cupcakes and decorated heart shaped sugar cookies with pink icing and lots of sprinkles, no paper lace and red foil heart doilie things stuck all over the windows, no school parties, etc. Except for the little treats I mailed my precious offspring, it was sad, until coolg'pa showed up at my office with a dozen beautiful red roses and a very nice gift. All the other men who wandered in during the day sheepishly commented that they better remember to get their wives something on the way home. No kidding, dudes!!!

Absent-minded Secretary said... [reply]

Happy Valentine's Day Nem! It sounds like you had a perfect day! I loved your description of previous Provo V-Days, but am happy that you have a nice romantic one too! I got a Bratz Valentine from my favorite 7 year old, and a cookie decorated by my favorite 4 year old, and the youngest of this clan blew his nose on my shirt, which was at the same time gross and endearing. I loved being the favorite pretend aunt on V-day!

Nemesis said... [reply]

So, Miss Hass, will you know Italian AND Spanish now? I hate all you impressive multi-lingual people. That Cicada's another one.

Sorry, Stupid. I totally would have returned the favor if I were around!

YEAH, no kidding. I'm glad you and dad set the example for those slackers.

Hi ABS! I think you're right--being the favorite aunt is the best, even if you're not blood kin. As long as you're the favorite, that's what matters.

Cicada said... [reply]

Hooray for having a boy on Valentine's Day! I too have spent my whole life worth of Valentine's Days without anyone. Only there was this one year where a really great boy snuggled with me and stuff on Valentine's Day and that was great. I'll just have to rely on that memory to get me through... If I try hard enough, it seems like only four days ago...

Nemesis said... [reply]

Cici, it seems like only 4 days ago that you told me about that one Valentine's that involved snuggling and stuff. My how time flies!

Cicada said... [reply]


Fun to allude to secrets on your blog.

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