In June of 2002, I flew to America to meet Bubb (my partner) in the flesh for the first time. We first started chatting on the net to each other on ICU2 on February 24th 2002.
I am a terrible flyer. I am claustrophobic and find the idea of a metal tube soaring 10kms above the earth terrifying. (It took SEVERAL vodkas to make it across the Pacific). I waited for a few hours in LAX, then boarded my flight to Atlanta.
When I landed in Atlanta, I had been awake for almost 30hours straight. I was liquored up. A wreck of nerves due to all the flying. And I had TOTALLY forgot that my luggage was being forwarded on and I didn't have to go and re=check in. So, what did I do? I powerwalked from Terminal E at Atlanta airport the half mile to the baggage claim area. I stood there for almost half an hour not understanding why my luggage hadn't arrived.
I went over to the customer service counter, and enquired when my luggage would come out as I had to check in for my next flight that left in 20 mins. The lovely lady behind the counter - a matronly black lady with a beautiful smile - looked at my ticket - gave me THAT look that only a Mother can give and said "Sir. Your luggage is on your plane. You didn't have to come all the way down here for that. Did you not know that?"
I was too tired and too disoriented by this point to do anything but have tears start to pour down my face. Yup. Total mess. And I'm an uglier crier. Gently, she took me literally by the hand. Took me to the counter. To the head of the line. And had them let the boarding gate know I was on my way. She took me to security and got me fast tracked. Gave me a hug and then sent me on my way.
I got to my departure gate 5 mins before boarding. Bubb and I had an agreement that at each stop - LAX and ATL - I was to ring him to let him know I had arrived safely. I called his number, and after a couple of rings it hung up on me. I tried again. Same thing. The third time I tried it did it again. I had now had enough.
Cue - Knots Landing moment.
I slammed the receiver down on the phone. I actually stamped my foot with a well said "Dammit!!" - at which point, from behind a column, Bubb walked out with a grin from ear to ear having a chuckle to himself. All my exhaustion, all my nerves and fears, all my frustration evaporated and I had "the moment".
I went up and hugged him. And then proceeded to sit next to him on the plane to Orlando with a smile I could not repress.
That was one moment in my life that I treasure. There are others. But that is certainly one of the top 5.
11 1/2 years we have been a couple - through good times, horrific tragedies, my mental illness, financial ruin, and moving between three countries. Somehow we have survived and continue to love each other and recognise we are each others best friends.
There are some non-traditional aspects to our relationship - but for the most part - we are just a couple in the burbs. We complain about getting up for work each day. Pay the bills. Watch TV. Have the occasional argument. Make up. Snuggle. Be snooty with each other. And be so wonderfully silly most of the rest of the time :)
Since February 24th, 2002 and all subsequent dates therein.
A 'moment' doesn't necessarily have to involve someone else.
I'll share a moment that was purely a singular moment soon.
But I hope you enjoyed my nostalgiac trip down memory lane.