It was a cold and snowy February morning, but Alice didn't mind. She loved winter in Kirkwood, MO, especially when she could curl up on the couch with a good book and a cup of hot chocolate. She had just finished reading a romance novel, and she sighed as she closed the book. She wished she had someone to share her love of reading with, someone who would understand her and appreciate her for who she was.
She had been widowed for five years, and she hadn't dated anyone since. She felt lonely, but she also felt scared of opening her heart again. She had seen too many of her friends get hurt by online dating. She didn't want to go through that. She wanted to find someone who would love her for her soul, not for her appearance or her bank account.
She decided to go for a walk around Kirkwood Park, to clear her head and get some fresh air. She put on her coat, scarf, hat, and gloves, and headed outside.
The snow was falling gently, and she smiled as she felt the flakes on her face. She walked to the nearby park, where she liked to feed the birds while watching the children play. She pulled out some seed and sat on a bench. She scattered some on the ground, and waited for the birds to come.
She noticed a man sitting on another bench, across from her. He was also feeding the birds, and he looked familiar. She realized he was Bob, her neighbor from two doors down. She had seen him around, but she had never talked to him. He was a quiet and polite man, who always greeted her with a smile and a nod. He was also a widower. His wife had passed away three years ago, and he lived alone with his dog.
She wondered what he was like, what he liked to do, what he thought about. She felt a sudden curiosity, and a spark of attraction. He was handsome, in a rugged and mature way. He had silver hair, blue eyes, and a strong jaw. He was wearing a navy blue coat, a gray sweater, and jeans. He looked cozy and comfortable.
She decided to be brave, and to strike up a conversation. She got up from her bench, and walked over to his. She smiled, and said, "Hi, Bob. I'm Alice, your neighbor. Do you mind if I join you?" He looked up, and his eyes widened. He smiled back, and said, "Hi, Alice. Of course, please sit down. It's nice to meet you." They started talking, and they found out they had a lot in common. They both loved reading, especially mystery and thriller novels. They both enjoyed gardening, cooking, and watching movies. They both had grown-up children, who lived in different states. They both missed their spouses, but they also felt ready to move on.
They talked for an hour, and they felt a connection. They laughed, they shared, they listened. They felt comfortable and happy. They exchanged phone numbers, and agreed to see each other again. They hugged, and said goodbye. Alice walked back to her house, feeling warm and fuzzy. She felt a new hope, a new excitement. She felt like she had found someone who could be her friend, and maybe more. She felt like she had found her valentine.
From all of us at the St. Louis Care Alliance, Happy Valentines Day!