Even though we had been friendly acquaintances for many years, we had never had the opportunity to get to know one another on a dig-down-deep personal kind of level. That is, until the night of November 6, 2010...
Earlier that November, I had written and shared one of my semi-depressing-but-with-a-happy-ending poems on Facebook called "Loneliness." It must have struck a chord with Steve because as soon as he read it, he sent me a message complementing me on said poem. Either that, or he just used it as a clever way to get his foot in the door to ask me out. Either way is fine with me. Anyway, through FB messages, we briefly touched on the past year of our crazy lives. We joked about being our own therapists, and Steve suggested we get together to share notes from our therapy sessions. He also added that we should include libations.
I'm a word junky so I was instantaneously intrigued by the fact that he had used this particular word to ask me to have a drink with him. I agreed. Steve called me a couple of times within the next day or so and we set up a date. He asked if I would rather go out for dinner or if I would like for him to cook for me. I chose the latter.
After being greeted at the door by Steve's welcoming smile, I immediately felt at ease. He had already began cooking and invited me to have a seat at the bar in his kitchen. This gave me the perfect view to watch him while he worked away spicing, stirring and chopping.
This brings me to the part about the garlic & onions.
Steve and I were each sipping a glass of nice red wine and the conversation was flowing freely. He was hard at work in the kitchen and was about to make what turned out to be the most amazing sauce I had ever tasted! He pulled out the cutting board and a large chef's knife and began chopping garlic and onions.
Now, this probably doesn't seem like much to most people, but for some reason all I could do was stare in admiration. It wasn't like this was some amazing feat he was performing. No, it wasn't that. It was the whole picture: Here was this ruggedly handsome, tough exterior cowboy, ever so gently and precisely chopping garlic and onions to make a meal for me. All while carrying on an intelligent conversation and making me genuinely laugh at his jokes. He seemed to be in his element. And for some reason, seeing him in this light just seemed magical.
The night continued without a hitch. The meal was delicious. The conversation was endless - we covered every topic from recipes to religion. And as they say, "The rest is history."
That was 3 1/2 years ago. Since that night, Steve and I have cooked many a meal together as cooking is one of our favorite shared pastimes. And while it initially took us a while to give in to the notion of being "a couple", I still jokingly tell people that I fell in love with him the moment I saw him chopping garlic and onions.
We've had our shares of ups and downs and in betweens but one thing has remained the same: If there is a recipe that calls for garlic and onions, I let HIM do the chopping!