Friday 23 May 2014

A Tale of Face Paint, Alcohol and Hunger Pains (#BEDM Day 23 - Date Night)

aka. The Tale of How I Met Andrew!
(how one date night led to another...)

The First Meeting - 16th November 2004
Well, it all began on a cold and wintery evening just after our local town's Carnival procession. Andrew was in a rival Carnival club (that year's theme was pinball machines) and my Carnival club (whose theme was gargoyles) used to go back to their social club for the post-procession party. Andrew had been in his club for 7 years already but I'd only just joined mine earlier that year.

2004 Carnival float

I didn't even notice him that night but apparently he spotted me across the room and thought "hmm...haven't seen her before...she must be new".

2004 Carnival outfit

Fast forward 5 days and we're at the oh-so-glamorous resort of Pontins in Brean Sands. The last Carnival procession that year was Weston Super Mare and as the tradition goes, as soon as your own float passes the finish line, you hotfoot it 10 miles down the road for a night of drunken debauchery and the all-important final results. Most people stay overnight and at about 2am a mutual friend invited Andrew and his mate Mark over for more booze and chatter. I'd only had three drinks so wasn't really drunk but I do remember thinking "surely never-in-a-million-years would he possibly fancy me!?"  He was 26 and I was only 21 - surely he wouldn't fancy someone 5 years younger!? (like that really made a difference!). Andrew remembers being a bit squiffy, still complete with half that evening's face paint on from the Carnival and tried cracking some jokes which went down like the proverbial lead balloon.

The First Date - 23rd November 2004
After Andrew had got home the next day and sobered up, he asked the said mutual friend for my number and we arranged to meet up a week or so later on a Tuesday night in a local pub between the two towns where we lived.

Carnival presentation
(this wasn't actually our first date, there's no pictures of that unfortunately but this was taken about 6 weeks later at a Carnival presentation)
We met up about 8pm, stayed in the pub til we were kicked out just before midnight and then stayed in the car park til about 3am just talking. Now, the bit I only found out about later on was that he'd planned to have dinner with me (note that he'd completely failed to mention this in advance) but as every girl knows - food and eating on a first date is dangerous; you don't want to end up looking like a disaster zone! So naturally when he asked me if I wanted something to eat, I said no - of course what he should have said is "I'm quite hungry, I think I'm going to get some food, what do you fancy?" which would have left me with no option but to say "yep, okay, I'll have something to eat".
What actually happened was that because we talked into the early hours, he was absolutely starving, even the kebab shops had closed and his dinner that night was just toast!
And he's never let me forget it...

 The Engagement - 18th September 2006
I spotted the perfect ring in the jewellers in our local high street during the summer and we went in to buy it. I have miniscule fingers (or at least, I did 7 years ago!) -  a size I - so it had to be specially ordered.

Engagement Ring

I knew Andrew was going to propose (we'd already talked about it) but I didn't know when the ring would arrive or what date he was going to do the deed. I was working to 7pm in my local library, went round to his mum and dad's house for dinner and he pulled me into his bedroom, promptly got down on one knee (except that as I pointed out before I said yes, he was actually on two knees) and then asked the immortal question.  His parents knew what he was up to, my parents didn't (but did have their suspicions) and all our friends were fed up waiting for him to ask me!

The Wedding - 21st April 2007
We got married 7 months later; no particular reason, just that we fancied April and thought it would be easy to organise by then. As it happened, everything was fairly simple to put together - neither me or Andrew are into massive lavish expensive celebrations - we had everything exactly how we wanted and the whole thing was only just over £3500.

Wedding Day
And of course, planning our perfect wedding without spending billions of pounds - that's a whole other story!


  1. What a lovely story! I get that you were dressed up as Gargoyles for your theme, but how could Andrew's lot dress up as pinballs?! :s xxx

    1. It was a very 'loose' interpretation of pinballs! (I think they all had bright colours and arrows on their costumes). I did try and find a picture but I think Andrew's hidden them all, although he does still have the costume in the loft - and flatly refused to put it on! :-) xxx

  2. You guys are adorable and the ring is magnificent. Any relationship that starts with a chat to the early hours is a winner.
    M x Life Outside London


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