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How she met him

So here I am, rolling through my daily routine.  One late morning in August, I go to brunch with my girlfriend Laura, which we do routinely.  Over our eggs and toast, she tells me about a guy she calls the KFC guy. 
Laura and her husband, Ken, would often go to Concerts On The Square to listen to the weekly concerts that are performed there throughout the summer.  Each week, just as the concert was about to start, Laura would see a motorcycle guy with long hair and a leather vest, work his way to the front of the crowd, his Kentucky Fried Chicken bag in hand, and sit down right in front to enjoy the concert.  He stood out, not fitting into the typical concert goer persona.  So when Laura and Ken bumped into the long haired biker guy at Riley's Tavern one day while they were out for a ride on their Harley, Laura remembered him.  After Laura explained that she'd seem him at COTS, Laura, Ken and the long haired biker guy, who's name happened to be ZigZag, chatted about APT, an outdoor theater near Madison, and motorcycles, and then they went their separate ways.  Laura went home and proceeded to look up ZigZag on his motorcycle clubs web site, and sent him an email asking him if it was OK to give his contact info to a friend of hers who may be interested in chatting with him.  He said that would be fine.  Sooo, Laura and I are at brunch when she tells me about ZigZag.  "He's interesting.  He has a Harley, but he likes COTS and APT.  You should email him."  I told her I would think about it.  And I did.  For about a week or so.  Finally, I thought why not.  It's just an email. 
So in September of 2008, I sent an email to the long haired biker guy named ZigZag who likes concert music and outdoor plays.  I instantly found that ZigZag, who I would from here on after call "Rich," has a very easy way about him and was easy to communicate with through email.  We chatted about this and that.  Some initial conversations were about my involvement in the Jackie Chan Kids Club.  This peaked his interest as his old Navy ship that he served on had been sold to Taiwan and he was interested in contacting it.  There was some discussion that perhaps with my Hong Kong connections with the Jackie Chan club, I could help him contact the ship.  Unfortunately, I couldn't help him, but we continued to email regularly about an abundance of other subjects.  Then life for me got nutty and there were quite a few months where Rich and I lost contact.  Then, one day I was doing a Jackie Chan kids club project with the daycare kids, and I got wondering if Rich had ever gotten in contact with his old Navy ship.  So I emailed him and asked.  It took Rich a while to remember who I was.  He'll be the first to admit that he doesn't have a stellar memory.  But once he did, the conversation started flowing again.  This time, the online chatting evolved from surface stuff to more getting to know you stuff.  And within a few months, there was discussion of meeting face to face.  I hadn't "dated" in many many years, so I was quite nervous about meeting.  But I had to meet this guy that I had such an easy connection to through email, face to face. 
The meeting:  On January 10th, 2010, Rich and I met at my friend Laura's house.  A mutual agreement so I could have some back up in case Rich turned out to be an ax murderer.  After chatting there for a bit with Laura and Ken, Rich and I headed over to the cinema to see Avatar.  I was surprised with myself at how easy it was to hold Rich's hand during the movie.  After-all, this was the first time I'd actually met him face to face.  But as the day and evening went on, it continued to be easy to chat with him.. and hold his hand.  As the days and months went on from there, it continued to be easy to be with him.  But after coming out of a marriage, I wasn't ready for a super serious relationship.  And Rich had been single all his life.  He was used to being single and doing what he wanted, when he wanted.  Always.  All the time.  So the relationship worked for both of us.  We do our own things, and we do our together things.
Travel:  Then the traveling started.  A Route 66 trip.  A trip to Charleston, SC.  Trips to Indiana and Chicago.  Day trips.  Overnight trips.  We learned a lot about each other during these trips.  Some of the things that we already knew, like Rich is very independent and doesn't like drama, and I like having my support group around me and am full of drama, came more to light and were understood more in depth during these trips.  But we also started learning how to balance those differences.  And we started realizing what good companions we are for each other.
New York:  In may of 2011, Rich was offered a job in New York.  Knowing he was a free spirit, I knew the day could come when he would hop the next plane..or train..or boat, and our relationship would change.  But knowing that didn't make me any less disappointed that he would be leaving.  As we drove around in the newly purchased Land Rover (aka- The Big Blue Beasty, or Beasty for short) that night, I was trying to come to terms with what would be a big change in our relationship when Rich totally surprised me by inviting me to join him in New York!  It took a while to wrap my head around the idea.  But eventually I decided to leave my beloved Fitchburg, WI and go with him to NY.  Rich left in May, I closed my business at the end of August and joined him in December after his condo sold.
New York: Many of you know the New York story.  What was supposed to be an awesome opportunity, that didn't turn out to be so.
Back in Wisconsin:  In May of 2012, Rich and I moved "home" again.  I was thrilled to be able to find a house in Fitchburg (Thank you Janse!) so I could start up my daycare business again quickly.  Rich had planned on taking some time before job hunting, but as usual, the job pretty much found him and he started working at Cummins in Stoughton.  Within months of being back home, I was eager to start looking for houses.  Rich was not.  At all.  Not one bit.  But in the end, Rich ended up finding the house we'll be calling home.  So, after just 6 months of being back in Wisconsin, I started my business back up, Rich got a job he's happy with, and we have a new home.  But wait!  That's not all!  Read the rest here
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