Our first Valentine’s Day…a sweet moment in time
10:00 a.m. Pre-boarding routine on a 350 passenger charter vessel.
On the dock, the ramp is placed snugly against the vessel’s port side; a deckhand wipes it down to avoid any mishaps.
The captain checks with his crew to confirm that they’re stationed in the designated safety zones.
In the bathroom, the marketing coordinator fluffs out her hair and re-applies lipstick, grabs the clipboard, reviews any late changes for this corporate charter, scribbles a couple of notes, but her mind isn’t really on her work.
10:30 a.m. Two hundred men, women, and children gather at the foot of the dock awaiting the OK to board.
The captain straightens the gold stripes on his shoulders and counts the people clicker down to zero.
I take my place on his left where I’ll greet everyone with a “Welcome Aboard” after they’re counted.
The captain nods to the deckhand to unhook the velvet rope blocking the gangway.
It’s time to begin the boarding procedure.
He turns to me and whispers in my right ear, “My heart is melting.”
WTF. That is just so HIM, to say something so monumental and amazing and unexpected–and it took my breath away. Literally. My mouth dropped open. (It really did, I remember it like it happened yesterday.) I had no sense of what went on for the next three hours. I was a zombie.
When all the guests were escorted to their seats and listened to the safety speech and lines were untied and we were underway, and after I had answered a million questions about our destination and passed out a few barf bags, I opened the door to the wheelhouse and handed my captain a cup of coffee.
I was suddenly shy. “Hi.”
“Thanks for the coffee.”
“Why did you say that, you know, back there?”
“Because it’s true.”
“You can’t just say something like that and expect me to just go on and act all normal.”
“I just did.”
Well, tugboat man, it’s our twenty-third Valentine’s Day, and you still make MY heart melt every time I look in your amazing grayish blue eyes.
I love you.