Friday, October 17, 2014

Falling in Love by Betsy Ashton

When I saw the topics for "fall," my initial response was to think about tripping. I'll write about my feet in my next post. This time, I want to write about falling in love with my husband. Nothing about our meeting or courtship should have worked.

First, I was on a business trip with a colleague. After a terrible week, she dragged me to a club on a Friday
night in the party center, Shinjuku. Did I say I was in Tokyo? I was. I was dead on my feet but went anyway. After all, I was familiar with the city and spoke the language. She was  new to Japan and had no idea where she was going. We tucked into a dance club/restaurant called Henry Afrika's on the sixth floor of a narrow building on an even narrower alley. I'd been there before and wondered if it still existed. It did.

We were the only foreign women in the club which was full of people our age or a little younger. The beer was cold, the food decent, the music loud, and the dance floor crowded. I was getting ready to bail when four tall men walked in and went to the other side of the club, Things were looking up. I excused myself an hour later to head for the line outside of the women's toilet. One of the men walked out of the men's room. His first words were the most unusual pick up line I'd ever heard.

"When you get done in there, do you want to dance?"

I thought he was really cute, but his accent screamed Australian. No long term interest but maybe some decent conversation beyond, "Are you American and can I practice my English?"

Turned out he was from New York state there on business. I took him on a tour of the city Saturday afternoon and all day Sunday. We hit it off and began figuring out how to see each other when we got back to the States.

Minor logistical problem. He lived and worked for IBM in New York state. I worked for an offshoot of Rand Corporation in California. We looked at our travel schedules and agreed to meet in Houston in a month. Easy hop for me; business trip for him. At the end of that second weekend, we knew we wanted to be together.

It took a year for me to find a new job in New York and move. We met several more times in Houston. He came to California a couple of times; we took our first motorcycle trip together.

So many places where we could have missed each other but didn't. Next year we celebrate our 30th anniversary. What was meant to be has become the greatest time of my life. I tell everyone about his pick up line. He reminds me I was the only guy I met in a bar and kept. We're both right.


Betsy Ashton is the author of Mad Max Unintended Consequences available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. The second book in the series, Uncharted Territory, will be released in June 2015. She lives for words and writing.


Margo Hoornstra said...

What a great story. That belongs in a book. A pick up line to remember!

Jannine Gallant said...

Yep, Betsy, you should use your epic love story as a plot. What a lovely post to read with my coffee this morning!

Betsy Ashton said...

Margo, I may use the pick up line sometime. Jannine, I'm glad you enjoyed this. After 30+ years, he's still my best friend. It's love at first sight every morning, bed head and morning breath and all.

Beth Camp said...

Betsy, Thanks for cross-posting this on facebook. What a sweetly romantic how-we-met. My story is rather prosaic in comparison: a work colleague in San Francisco needed a ride to the airport. He apologized because the plane left on Friday night. At midnight. His roommate said whoever was dumb enough to give Cap a ride when the subway was so close, he'd treat to dinner at a French restaurant (thinking only another guy would say yes). The rest is history and 40 years in the past, but we still love French food!

Betsy Ashton said...

How wonderful, Beth. Each of us has a story about how we met our favorite friend, spouse or otherwise. I'm glad to share mine.