The Power of Attraction

My friend Elizabeth is a hopeless romantic. Mention two people together in the same story...and things come to a grinding halt. "Wait! How did they meet?"

I had no idea.

Then one weekend, Elizabeth and I took a road trip. We gabbed the entire way...burning up the highway miles with hours and hours of conversation. When we arrived at our destination, I spilled out of the car, my head pulsing from the constant talking. Definitely a girl's trip. And during the drive, I must have heard it a hundred times...."How did they meet????"

I laugh a little now...because I've adopted the same fascination.

Two people, walking down the street. One is late for work, the other is lost. Neither of them is supposed to be there at that moment...and suddenly...they connect.

I'm intrigued by the randomness....

Why here?

Why now?

Why you?


I spend my life making strategic connections. So when the people in my world's anything but random.

But every now and then...the unexpected happens.

Two people connect.

And when it happens to me?

I am deeply humbled.


Flashback, two years ago.

I'm standing in the kitchen.

At a hostel.

While nursing my first cup of coffee, I watch this guy make a waffle. Since I've never made a waffle before, I asked him how it works.


That's how we met.

I'm in Tucson for a wedding; he'd been in town all week for a conference. As luck would have it, we both picked the same day to see the city. Since he knew the lay of the land and I had a rental car, we joined forces.

It started amicably.

He showed me where the old city district was, pointed out a few highlights and then we drove out to the newer side of town. Consulting my guide book, we found a place to have lunch. Detouring on the way back, we found this amazing piñata shop...with an Easter bunny piñata as tall as him!

We had Seattle in common. He lived here as a university student...and left the same year I arrived.

That evening, wedding festivities kicked in and I was expected to be at the rehearsal dinner/bbq. Since it was an informal affair, I asked if I could bring a guest. (My friend Pete still teases me about finding a date at the hostel!) We had a lovely time together but it was short lived. He was flying out the next day.

By day 2, over coffee and waffles...I could barely contain my grin.

We made plans to see an outdoor art show, and then I would take him to the airport. But I when joined him to head out for the day, he had a surprise...

"Do you want me to stay?"

My inner voice shouted from the rooftops, YES!!! But logic prevailed, "What about your conference in San Francisco?"

While I was getting ready, he'd planned an alternative. There were no other flights leaving for San Francisco that day, but if he took a late night bus, he could catch an early flight from Phoenix. This way, he could go to the wedding with me, and still make it to the conference.

I was deliriously happy.

We headed out for the art show and with crystal clear skies, he brought an umbrella. I thought it was strange, but soon forgot about it. Then, as the midday sun grew stronger, I figured out what the umbrella was for. He brought it to shield my fair Irish skin from the sun.

Until that day, I swear, I'd never met a more thoughtful man.

Pete's wedding was a costumed 1920's affair. With feathers flying from my pink boa, we danced to the full brass band. I felt a little like Cinderella when the time arrived...and I needed to take him to the bus. It was inevitable. We'd delayed his departure as long as possible.

I saw him once more just a few weeks later. On a long layover in Seattle, we met at the airport.

In quick succession...there were too many good byes....

Eventually, life returned to normal. His hectic work in Switzerland, mixed with an erratic international travel schedule. And for me? An equally crazy schedule and a new career. Not exactly an ideal match.

Before long, our time together in Arizona slipped into a fond memory....

Then, a couple weeks ago, I received an e-mail. He was coming to Seattle...and would I join him for dinner? It had been two years since I last saw him. This was probably just a friendly dinner. Maybe he was seeing someone....A thousand thoughts raced through my head.

The day arrived and I drove to our agreed upon location. He stepped out of his car, wearing a smile that was positively electric! Without hesitation, he leaned in and kissed me.

We went to dinner and it was that delirious kind of evening where...we didn't care what we ate...or where we went. Easy conversation quickly fell into place and we talked well into the night.

As we walked the city streets, a light rain began to fall. He pulled out an umbrella and we huddled underneath it. I had to smile. There he was....shielding me, again.

What does the rest of the story hold?

I don't know.

But Elizabeth, if you're reading this...your hopeless romantic heart is well-placed. And this one, I can answer:

We met. Over waffles. At a hostel. In Tucson, Arizona.

(To be continued....)