Serendipity: A Love Story
By Alice Adams
Our eyes first met when neither of us was looking.
I was sitting on my friend’s Ursula’s living room floor. We were surrounded by papers. Ursula was doing post-grad work for another law degree. I was editing her paper on “The Polluter Pays Principle.” We had been working for hours.
Ursula’s husband and a friend came home for something cold to drink. They had been on a seven-mile run, training for the annual Houston marathon.
They introduced their sweat-drenched friend, Ron. We exchanged pleasantries. I went back to editing and the guys wrangled cans of beer before disappearing.
The next day my phone rang. It was Ron, asking me to lunch the next day.
It took a moment to make up my mind, but I decided, why not? I needed to eat lunch.
The next day, he picked me up at work. I was a bit uncomfortable at first because I hadn’t negotiated a neutral place to meet. More importantly, I wouldn’t have my own car in case I needed a way to escape.
As it turned out, I was nothing but impressed.
First off, Ron looked totally different from the muscular man in wet running shorts and soaked t-shirt I had met at Ursula’s house two days earlier. He was dressed in a beautiful suit and looked quite dashing.
We drove to a nearby park, and he spread a blanket out for our picnic. I noticed the football blanket came from the college in the town where I grew up.
But it was the thought and romantic touches to that first lunch that made me want to know more about this man. He brought me an appropriate greeting card, a bouquet of flowers and candles for our meal. He even prepared a healthy lunch for the intended picnic.
As we talked, I learned the school’s coach was one of his heroes. That coach had been one of my dad’s good friend, the coach’s wife had been my Sunday School teacher when I was in first grade and the coach’s kids were my playmates. Talk about serendipity!
Before the end of our lunch, Ron asked for a second date — and I accepted.
That was in October and by the following July we were married.
I always said his creativity for our first date, along with being the caring, smart and wonderful guy he was, tipped the scales in his favor — almost immediately.
But that was only the beginning.
My eldest granddaughter recently met a fellow student at her university who is more like her grandfather. On their first date, Adam planned a picnic near campus — at a gazebo overlooking a small lake.
The lunch Adam prepared was not as “gourmet” as the one Ron prepared several decades ago, but it was well thought out with all foods and snacks my granddaughter enjoys. The two of them, ironically, had gone on a short run before ending at the gazebo.
After their picnic, Adam said he had a few surprises for Emma. One was a beautiful bracelet from Egypt, his home country. Then, he read aloud to her something he had written. After reading his prose, he confessed he was a bit nervous about the last part of his gifts. But after Emma encouraged him, he sang to her.
I can honestly say, in my lifetime, I have never had a date sing to me.
How romantic! I thought romance had disappeared from our modern “hook-up” society. But there it was, romance!
Adam will spend spring break with Emma and her family while I watch their love grow and deepen from afar.
Ah, sweet love!
Artwork “Serendipity” by Anna Dittmann (Scotland).
Alice Adams has combined her passions for writing, history, grandparenting, education, and medicine in a career spanning more than three decades. She holds a doctorate in education leadership and taught marketing and business communications at Odessa College and The University of St. Thomas in Houston. She has written for the Houston Chronicle and currently contributes articles to a number of Texas and national publications.