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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

It all started with one message....





So here's an unlikely story... A romance that started on OKCupid over a year ago and led to a meeting in DC, a relocation move to NC, engagement, and marriage! No wonder Carl and I are so fond of OKCupid, even paying acknowledgment to this free dating site on our wedding day (2/7/09) in Las Vegas.

We were both only looking for friendships and then, well, you know how it can be... In fact, the funny thing is that Carl was ready to delete his profile the very day I joined the site. My picture caught his eye, he read my profile, and felt we had a lot in common since we'd both lived overseas a large percentage of our lives. He sent me an email in January 2008.

I, on the other hand, was a bit more reluctant... I didn't want to jump into anything quickly. I had only been divorced four months. But you know how these things can move along even when you are "trying" to be careful---you email using OKCupid's messaging site, then you IM, then email using private email addresses, then phone calls....

After you've talked a total of 100 plus hours, you do wonder what the other person sounds like without access of a cell phone. What would it be like to be sitting right next to him drinking coffee and talking? I was curious and really enjoyed the evenings on the phone with Carl. He had a great voice and was funny, caring, sensitive, honest, and such a good listener.

Distance was not on our side. In fact, we lived 600 miles apart. Nevertheless, we picked a halfway spot of Washington, DC and met on 3/7/08. Nervous? That's an understatement. The rain was pouring, traffic was bad, as it often is in DC, and I was ready to turn around and head home. What was I doing anyway? Carl was already at the meeting spot, so, I had to carry on with our plans.

We greeted; he hugged me, and then we got to experience time together. Lots of hours to drink coffee and talk, while listening to each other's voices without the aid of a phone.

We knew we were already good friends because we had been honest in our sharing over the phone during the three weeks before we met. However, there were no guarantees that we would feel that "spark" between us. We worried. What if she smelled bad? What if he chewed while food flew out of his mouth?

This story continues because upon that first meeting, we were relieved to feel that chemistry between us. Yes, I smelled nice thanks to Elizabeth Taylor's White Diamonds and Carl actually had pleasant table manners, even holding his fork and knife in that proper British way.

And so there were more meetings and Carl moving to be near me, and although it took me months to agree, an engagement on New Year's Eve. After that, it was finding the best weekend to get married (i.e., when there were no book signings going on).

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