I pour freshly brewed coffee into the cup and sit down in the corner of our kitchen. I throw my legs up, lean back and take the first sip of the hot beverage. My shoulders sink down a little and I feel how I relax.
Right then, my wife comes up to me holding a black, smooth stone in her hand. I instantly recognize the stone as one of the stones that I picked for her on Reynisfjara beach in Iceland. For some reason she really like stones a lot.
Just the other day she said that some of those black stones would fit very well in my photo studio – given the fact that there’s an enormous wedding image from Iceland hanging on the wall behind the reception desk. I agreed and she jokingly replied that I could buy some stones from her.
She hands me the stone and says, “Here you are. You don’t even have to pay!”
She winks at me and I wonder for a second if she thinks that one poor stone, lying in the studio, will look good – won’t that just be a bit strange?
When I take the stone though, I immediately feel that there’s something different about it. It is not as smooth as it should be – there’s something stuck underneath the stone. I turn the stone over and see find note with coordinates. I read out loud; “Lat 40.752321, long -73.985347.”
Immediately I know what this is all about. This is yet another one of my wife’s wonderful surprises for me.
If you know my wife, you also know that she’s as impulsive as she’s efficient and that she’s absolutely wonderful in so many ways. She does not care much about what other people say and think about her. The only one she’d listen to are the ones closest to her big heart. I admire her (and secretly envy her) for that – not caring too much about other peoples opinion about her. I wish I could be more like that.
One thing that she cares about (and like) though is a good surprise. Both giving and receiving that is. And this time she surprised me.
For the record, we are celebrating our ten-year wedding anniversary, and I had begun planning a little surprise myself, but this time (like so many times before) she beat me to it.
I take out my phone and start trying to figure out what the coordinates represent. At first I get it wrong and end up far away in Kazakhstan. I frown and look at my wife.
“Do you know what you did wrong?” she sounds amused.
“Yes, I think so. I might have missed the little – infront of the longitude !?”
“You’re absolutely right,” she says.
I begin to re-enter the coordinates, and she says:
“We are leaving on Friday. We’ll get in the car in the morning and the coordinates will lead us to the venue where we’ll have dinner – to celebrate our anniversary. “
I put in the last couple of numbers and a map pops up on the screen of my phone. A map of my favorite city in the world. The same city where I asked my wife to marry me, so many years ago. The same city to which we always seem to return. The same city that will always have a special place in my heart – New York city!
Without my knowledge, my dear wife has booked a weekend in New York, just to celebrate our anniversary. She’s so amazing!