You know when you begin watching a movie, a chick flick to be exact, and you get all giddy because you just know it’s gonna be one of those movies that is gonna give you butterflies and inspire you to believe in love? Well, all of these movies have one thing in common, and it’s called a “meet cute”. The meet cute is that scene in a romantic film, where the two characters, who are destined to be together, meet for the very first time. It’s that unplanned moment where they accidentally bump into each other or lock eyes from across the room.
Well tonight, I am gonna share with you my “meet cute” moment of when I met, who I consider, the love of my life.
It’s mid-June, one helluva hot Texas Summer in 2009. I am single, I am happy, I am comfortable in my own skin and I am wrapping up my last semester in the Paralegal Studies Program at El Centro College. My sister, Yadira, and I go to lunch at my favorite casual seafood joint here in Dallas—Hook, Line & Sinker! It’s afternoon, the lunch rush is gone and we are greeted with smiles and a bunch of “Eeeeyyyyy, how are you? Long time, no see!” by the very friendly staff that recognize us as regulars. We smile, laugh, place our order, and take a seat. Our order is ready in less than 20 minutes and instead of walking up to the counter for our food, there comes this friendly face delivering our order to our table. He smiles, sets the food down in front of us, and politely asks if there is anything else we need. I respond with, “No. We’re fine, thank you!” and he smiles again and says “Provecho!” as he walks away. & for all my non-Latin sisters out there, this simply means “Enjoy!” Moments later, that same friendly face is gazing over, cleaning all the empty tables around us, and asks if we are doing alright or need anything else. My response remains the same but only this time in Spanish to be polite, “Estamos bien, gracias!” He continues cleaning the already clean tables around us and finally asks (in Spanish of course) “Where are you from?” I quickly answer, trying to get that bite of food down, “Dallas,” even though I am really just a small town gal, trying to make it in the big bad city. He wouldn’t even know where Seagoville, Texas was anyways. Dallas is the much better response. He then says, very proudly, that he is from Aguascalientes (this translates to “hotwaters”). I didn’t know where that was, but I knew it was in Mexico. I really just tried to be like “oh cool” and go back to minding my business of tearing up that delicious seafood. Then he says, “I can take you one day, if you ever want to go.” So me being the friendly gal that I am, just go along with the convo and say, “Yea, sure! Whenever you want to invite me, I’ll go!” but rolling my eyes internally. Finally, he introduces himself:
“Yo me llamo Obed.” I respond with “Ana, nice to meet you” in Spanish.
Then he starts making small talk, asking whether or not we frequent this place a lot, what part of Mexico my family is from, etc. At the time, I had no idea that Obed had worked there for about 2 years, when we met, but we never saw each other until that day. At this point, I was just ready to leave, but I kept smiling and answering and finally, signaled to my sis with just a look, LET’S GOOOOOO!!!! She likes him. She thinks he is cute, and she says, “Ana, he is nice, I think you should just leave him your number.” I look at her like (insert rolling eyes emoticon here) “Girl, please!” We leave the restaurant, say goodbye and I walk out of his life fuh-eva, until the weekend of July 4th. I was still single, still happy, enjoying my life and on holiday. I am visiting family in El Paso, Texas and Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico. Then suddenly, I get a text a message in Spanish
“Hola! Como estas?” My automatic response was “You have the wrong number”
because no one ever texted me in Spanish. Then he hit me with “Ana? It’s me, the guy from Aguascalientes!” Immediately, I dialed my sister in less than 2.5 seconds and ripped her a new one. She laughs hysterically, “Ahahahahahahhaha! Sis, just talk to him! He is nice and he’s cute too! Maybe he will give us the hook up on some food!” My sister was worried about a hook up and I was concerned with whether or not he was a psychopath serial killer (that’s just how my mind works). I was mad! You DO NOT just give out one’s phone number like that. It is a clear Girl Code violation. Especially between sisters! Like, who does that? Later, I found out she had gone back to Hookline for dinner one night and Obed remembered her. He asked her about me, and she gave him my number.
So then, I had this guy named Obed from Aguascalientes, Mexico texting me what seemed like every damn day, until I finally gave him the time of day. & to make long story short, a few weeks later, we are texting frequently and talking and I received the most beautiful flowers ever gifted to me and delivered straight to my home. My mother was in awe and was curious as to who sent me those beauties. I so weirdly respond, “Mom, it’s this guy named Obed and he is from Mexico and he works at a restaurant.” At this point, I am still thinking I am totally out of his league. This guy couldn’t possibly think he stands a chance. I am a U.S. Citizen! Although, Donald Trump would argue that I am an anchor baby, but we will save that for another blog. I hate to sound vain and all but let’s face it, we all think we know what kind of guy we will end up with. For sure, I never thought I would marry a Mexican. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my people. I am proud to be Mexicana. I love everything Latin. The thing is, when you are born and raised in the U.S. and you are Latina, you just don’t grow up submerged in your culture. It is very different. I don’t discriminate when it comes to men. I like them all. No matter race or color. I just didn’t think in a million years that I would marry a straight up Mexican from dead smack in the center of Mexico. Aguascalientes, Mexico to be exact. I quickly learned that Obed was such a hopeless romantic and everything he did, he did with such a sweet and enormous passion. He paid attention to everything, and he was ever so detailed. Obed always made it a point to let me know how special I was to him and wasn’t afraid to tell me that he knew he loved me, from the very first time he saw me. I never believed in love at first sight. In fact, I thought that was a thing of fairy tales and simply didn’t exist. Looking back, however, and realizing all the details, I see now that everything Obed ever told me was true. He loved me from that day forward. Obed always told me throughout our marriage, how he could never forget the day he laid eyes on me. He said that he knew from the moment he first saw me that I would be his wife. He recounts our “meet cute” much differently than I do. When I walked in to the restaurant that day, he says he was immediately drawn to me. He said my smile was contagious and that my aura illuminated joy and happiness and he could not wait to get close to me.
Finally, after much conversation about him with my momma, I decided I should give the guy a chance. I needed to thank him for the beautiful flowers and so I agreed to have a first date. The rest is history. Two years later, we married on a lovely Fall evening in the middle of a beautiful garden in good ol’ Palestine, Texas on September 17, 2011. Fast forward four years later and we find ourselves divorced.
Now before y’all start feeling sorry for me, please know that I actually am ok. I am still very excited to share my life adventures of what being married to a chef was like. It was absolutely the most challenging, yet rewarding experience of my life. I hope you enjoy my stories and are able to take something positive from them that can be applied to any marriage. I wish to inspire you on my quest for steaming things up and cooling things off, all for the sake of perfecting an eternal recipe for life and love!
Thank y’all for following, subscribing, liking and sharing! I appreciate all the love and support. Provecho!
XO – Ana Verduzco