Mar 20, 2012

Not-So Newlyweds

It was the way most of our Friday nights end up in this town. Keane and I had gotten off work and were ready to begin the weekend. I didn't want to cook so we hurried down to our favorite restaurant to catch the end of Happy Hour. We squeezed up to the bar, found some seats and ordered our usual drinks and appetizers. The place was packed just like every other time we had been.

We began catching each other up on the happenings of our days. Before long I was laughing because that's what husband does to me. There were pecks on the lips and hand holding but it stopped at that– no obnoxious PDA (although I do looove me some PDA). Keane pulled out my chair when I returned from the bathroom and we looked at each other while we spoke. You know, normal stuff, or so I thought.

Three men (probably in their 60s) sat to the right of us. Several times I caught them looking at us and I even heard one say, "Must be newlyweds."

I wondered why they thought that. Maybe because we look young? Because let's face it, I still get asked if I'm old enough to sit in the emergency exit row on an airplane. Over the next several minutes, I continued to notice stares and whispers directed our way from this same group of men. Then, this exchange happened:

"You guys are newlyweds, right?"
"Umm, we've been married for 2.5 years, so not really."
He laughed and said he considered that to still be newlyweds. Then he said...get this...
"I could tell because it looks like you guys still like each other. It's cute."

Ummm...thanks? I informed him that we've actually been together for 10 years and yes, we really do like each other. A lot. The men looked shocked. "10 years?" They proceeded to tell us that they travel all over for work and find it interesting to observe the behavior of couples who are out together.

Kind of creepy, I thought, but whatever. To each his own. They said they'd been watching us and we were one of the only couples in the restaurant who were actually talking and being affectionate toward one another so they assumed we were in the honeymoon stage.

I looked around the bar. Sure enough, most couples were either looking at their phones, watching TV or eating in silence next to their date. Some of them appeared downright miserable.

Over the next few hours, the men periodically emphasized how impressed they were by our relationship; we were refreshing to see, they said. Despite the fact that their compliments were likely influenced by their steadily increasing blood alcohol levels, we were beyond flattered. We even noticed one of the guys had paid for our dessert once we got our bill. Nice, right?


Today marks four years since Keane proposed to me. My hope for our relationship is that we never forget why we fell in love in the first place. That we remain best friends and never stop laughing together. That in 15 years, Keane will still be pulling out my chair and I will be looking at him like he is the only person in the room that matters. I hope that in 15 years, people still think we're newlyweds.

Happy engagement anniversary, hubbin. I love you so big.

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