Thursday, September 12, 2013

It All Began with a Swatch...

At some point, when you are getting to know someone, they will ask you how you met your spouse. M. and I began to fall in love because of a Swatch.

I grew up in Iowa. People always make fun of me, or roll their eyes when they hear this. No, I did not live on a farm. I don't know which side of the Crispix is the crunchiest, and I did not drive a tractor to school. It was actually a really great place to grow up.

Anyhow, M. was friends with my older brother, but I was just the little sister (only by 3 years) who was annoying. My parents took the whole group of boys to Chicago to see U2 in 1985, but I was shuffled off to a friend's house for the night.

My brother and sister were off at boarding school when I was in the 9th grade. I was applying, and knew that I would be leaving starting in 10th grade, and it didn't bother me at all. I loved my hometown, but I was ready for something new. So, I was in a large public high school, and everyone knew I was the sister of E. and R., and that I'd be going away to school in a year. My friends started to date older boys, which I know happens in high school.

Our campus was closed for 9th grade students, so we were stuck eating lunch in the cafeteria. Visions of every John Hughes movie come to my mind when I think of it. So, my friend and I decided to sneak off campus for lunch with her boyfriend and his friend. Of course, the friend ended up being M. We ended up at McDonalds, and I only had a lunch ticket to pay for lunch (my parents not knowing I would need anything else). I had to bum lunch money off of M. He still jokes about it today.

About a week later, I was scheduled to go to Switzerland with my parents to see my sister. I received a message that I should take the bus home, as my mom couldn't pick me up. The bus was worse than death. After it left the high school, it stopped at the elementary school to pick up kids. Desperate to find another ride home, I saw M. in the locker bay. I asked him for a ride home. Yay! No bus. While we drove, I told M. that we were headed to Switzerland the next morning. As I was getting out of the car, he said, "Have fun, bring me back a Swatch watch."

While touring the country, we spent a few days in Lucerne. It was a great city, one if my favorite European cities, actually. Before we left, I stopped into a Swatch boutique, and picked up a Swatch for M.

When we arrived home, I called M. I told him it was Andrea, and his answer was, "Andrea who?" I was so embarrassed, but told him who it was, and that I brought him a Swatch from Switzerland. "Cool, do you want to go see a movie?" M. said. 

And so, M. and I had our first date on Halloween, 1986. We went to see Crocadile Dundee. No, we did not stay together until we were adults, but we did date for about a month, and became great friends. We got back together when I was about 27, dating long distance, and eventually getting married in 2000. M. wore the dead Swatch to our wedding.

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