It was a Saturday afternoon. We had been walking along the canal in Djurgården, talking about his recent travelling, the oddly warm start to winter, and my seemingly endless job hunt. Everything really but the thing that was playing on both our minds since that Thursday when we finally admitted to ourselves that we had to make a decision. We rested for a while on a bench, sharing amusing anecdotes while small waves licked the shoreline. The sun had disappeared and the temperature started to drop so we began to walk back. I remember at one point he asked me to guess when his birthday was. He revealed that he had been a Valentine’s baby. I smiled, it suited him.
I remember nearing the city again, seeing the buildings reflecting in the water. When he brought up the big question I knew it was coming, but still my stomach began twisting itself in knots and I felt a flush rise to my cheeks. We talked about it, carefully at first, perhaps not wanting to say the wrong thing. Finally I went against the tiny voice inside, always trying to tell you that you can’t when you really can. The words fell out of my mouth before I had a chance to second guess myself. I said I thought it was worth it. Despite doubts and fears and logic and reason. Because just maybe it would be worth it.
And when he looked at me, and told me he wanted to give it a try too, it all went so fast. I remember he was in front of a big tree. Yellow, wet leaves lay strayen across the path, but a heavy darkness still loomed from branches above. Some dog walkers were passing, perhaps I heard the crunching of a jogger on gravel. There was a street light beeming down, the sky was a much deeper hue now than when we had set off. I remember, when we finally kissed, thinking that since that Thursday I had been worrying that I would never get to do this ever again. Something I hadn’t dared to admit mattered until I felt the safety of his reply.
It was worth it.
For our first Valentine’s day together we did what we do best. Took a long walk, ate good food, toasted in Champagne and watched far too much Netflix (Downtown Abbey marathon, mi’lady). Being his birthday, I of course woke him with candles, cake and song. I settled for a two ingredient Nutella cake recipe that intrigued me and was relieved to find it did not just taste like a Nutella omelette.
Just to point out I only thought to take a photo after devouring half the pack, thus the odd selevtion of messages…”cheeky boy”
A few days prior, having found his main present and deciding on a jar of the good stuff (you guessed it, Nutella) for his Valentine’s, I suddenly had an idea pop into my head for a painting. Now painting something for someone is always nervewrecking. Especially if it is actually of them, and they have no idea you are doing it. You never know how it will go down, and that last thing you want is to have them give you their best present face. I chose to ignore these concerns and instead embrace this sudden flow of creativity. Suddenly it was done, in under two days! I was quite relieved to find the birthday boy very happy with his portrait, so thought I’d share the process.
If you are wondering about the motif, my handsome man is a climate researcher who has a love for travelling, especially if it involves flying with SAS!
watch the magic unfold in glorious pixley gif-mode..
Hope you all had a lovely Valentine’s weekend!
(And if you didn’t – you made it yaaay, it’s over for another year!)