Thirteen Years

Today, the 21st of April 2016 marks the thirteenth anniversary of the day a sixteen year old boy sent me a cryptic text message in the middle of the night to ask me to be his girlfriend.

It was a Monday, and he had just got back from Battle of the Bands. We used to go every week, our two separate groups of friends would meet in McDonalds to buy chips (and strawberry milkshake to dip them in...goodness only knows why) then walk down Regent Road in Great Yarmouth. There would be about 20 of us, some on skateboards, some playing music, and some of us (guess which I was) wearing huge pink trousers, odd socks and shoes and badges all over our backpacks. Somebody would inevitably throw a doughnut at somebody's head, or get a random piercing on the way. We probably looked a bit intimidating - we definitely looked completely ridiculous.

This week though, I wasn't allowed to go. I was 14, and the weekend before I'd been grounded by my parents because I went to an all day gig (the ticket for which is in the above photo) telling them I'd had a sensible lunch, when in actual fact I'd been to my best friends house for a chicken nugget sandwich and a bag of squares. Weirdly, it wasn't the late gig on a Sunday that was the problem, but the terrible choice of lunch!

So, I wasn't allowed out (except to go to school) until the Less Than Jake gig we had tickets for over a month later, and I wasn't allowed to buy credit for my phone either. I was furious, my parents were officially deemed "harsh" by my friends, and I spent whole of the next Monday evening imagining that the guy I liked and was hoping would ask me out would find someone else and lose interest in me entirely!

However, after I got in bed, I got a text message from said guy. Actually I got two, remember when text messages would be sent as multiples if they were above a certain character limit? The first was along the lines of:

"So, tonight at battle of the bands, I was talking to this girl. She said that her friend really likes me, and has done for ages. I really like her too, and I think I might ask her out. So really I was just wondering..."

Excellent I thought. Just as I expected. He's going to ask if I would mind leaving him alone so he can be some other girl's boyfriend. Great. Then I got the rest of the message:

"If you'll go out with me"

My initial reaction was elation. Then panic. I didn't have credit. I couldn't reply. Of course, I couldn't possibly wait till school in the morning because he definitely would have changed his mind by then. So I embarked upon a middle of the might mission to steal my little sisters phone (really good plan when you're already grounded Eleanor!)

She was 10 at the time, and had heavily decorated her bedroom with various mobiles, cuddly toys, a doorbell (!?) and the noisiest, most sleeping-parent-disturbing plastic door curtain imaginable! It was a bit like the scene from Wallace and Gromit with the lasers. Picture me navigating round the squeaky floor board on the landing where my Dad fell out of the loft, trying not to trip over the hoover in the dark, then moving aside the dangling flowers with one hand while reaching in to her chest of drawers with the other and removing the shoe box sized phone without waking anybody up. Like a giant game of life-or-death operation!

Phone acquired, I made my way back to bed to compose a reply! I can't actually remember what I wrote, but I do remember deleting all evidence and returning, ninja like to replace it.

To most people, this probably sounds like a normal teenage romance, but for me it was the start of the rest of my life. That annoying, doughnut throwing, skateboarding 16 year old boy became my husband last year!

Thirteen years on, we both feel so lucky that we've not only grown up together, become stronger with every year thats passed, and still make each other laugh like we did during those walks down Regent Road (although less food gets thrown these days, and he has permission to divorce me if I ever set foot in Mcdonalds) mostly, we're glad my little sister had credit on that fateful night in 2003!

They ended up being pretty good friends too...


  1. This was such an amazing, cute love story!! Like something you'd read about in a book or see in a movie. I had to chuckle when you mentioned Less Than Jake - oh, how I remember that band! Such 10th grade memories, lol. I absolutely loved this post! I'm actually SOMEWHAT in a similar situation - I've been going out with my boyfriend for just over four years now, but we've known each other since the 2nd grade. At just 13 years old, I started crushing him. Seriously! He took a LOT longer until he finally asked me out though (at 22 years old LOL!) But hey, better late than never?
    Congratulations to you guys!!

    -Lor //

    1. Thank you! Aw how lovely that after all those years of you liking him he finally asked you out - meant to be I reckon! We seem to have a lot in common! x

    2. I always totally forget that other people have heard of Less Than Jake! They always felt like 'our' thing because barely anyone else at school liked them! We walked into our wedding breakfast to Gainsville Rock City - another long term love! x

  2. Oh I love this! You two are so cute, amazing story and lovely memories, thank you for sharing ❤️ xx