Last week I had the immense privilege of being invited over for tea to my neighbours’ house. It was a wonderful morning filled with laughter, yummy treats, and of course stories. One of my favourites was the story of how B and L met*. The two of them have been married for 60 years! B will be turning 90 next year, and L will be turning 86. Because their story warmed my heart, and took me to an era of simpler times, I wanted to share it here with all of you…
Imagine that you are living in the 1950s in a growing city with a booming manufacturing industry. There’s a central railway hub, and the buses that run within the city are the main source of transportation – as street cars have already become a thing of the past for Peterborough, Ontario.
Photo taken from the Peterborough Examiner.
It’s a Friday night and L has been working all day for the Bell Telephone Exchange. “Please hold”, L says into the phone as she flicks a switch. It’s almost time to clock out, and tonight L has agreed to go out on a double date. The catch is, L has never seen her date before. L thinks to herself the dance will be fun regardless of what her mystery man looks like.
B has been working all day too. He’s about to finish up at GE for the day when he remembers he has some clothing to pickup from the cleaners. He dashes over to the cleaners, and picks up his pants and shirt just before closing time. B approves of his freshly pressed trousers and thinks, “perfect, I have a pair of pants to wear for my blind date tonight”. B is originally from England, but he is in Peterborough on a working vacation. He’s a welder by trade, and finds that the opportunity is greater here in Canada right now than it is back home. Not to mention as his mate has set him up on a date, things are going pretty well for B right now.
The time as finally arrived, the dance is about to begin and B and L are about to meet for the first time. After some brief introductions, L just knew…
First impressions are everything, and right away L approved of B’s freshly pressed grey pants. They were perfectly creased and she knew that B was neat and clean. How could he not be the man for her?
Unfortunately, the night did have at least one blunder. As the group sat down with their drinks at a nearby table, L got a little chatty with her hands. Her Pink Lady ended up right in B’s lap! Of course the drink had to be a sticky one, and the location of the spill was not exactly humorous at the time. But the date went on and no spilled drinks could damper the connection between B and L.
As B and L were retelling their story, B joked about his eyesight and how it never was any good but that even still, looking at L that night, he knew too.
The pair got married and moved back to England only to find that times were still hard. They decided to make the move back to Peterborough to start their family. After a few years in an apartment they moved into their very first home. They have lived there now for 55 years.
While the two of them may physically show signs of age, their hearts and minds are young. The love that they have for one another radiates and truly could leave you feeling warm and cozy for days.
So here’s to B and L, and true love at first sight.
*To protect their privacy I have given my neighbour’s the pseudonym B & L.