The story starts like this...

It's V-Day, and Scotsman's sweetness has me feeling nostalgic, so I wanted to recount our dating story.

We've actually only been dating since August (hard to say exactly when our 'anniversary' is), so roughly 6 months. We live together, own a cat together, even own furniture together, so I often find myself thinking of us as more than just dating.
If ya know what I mean.

Scotsman and I met at the renaissance faire.
Normally, that's the opening line for a Humorous Bad Ex Boyfriend Story (I have been doing faires for two decades, and met a LOT of losers there in the past).

This time was different, though- I was working the ale house, my first time at this faire. He was also working the ale house (as a drayer, the guys who do the heavy lifting for us), not his first time at that faire.

I was actually in an open relationship (my first and last) with a 19 year old. Yep. I'm a cougar. Er, puma (cuz I'm not 40+).

I'll be honest. I was NOT looking for a romance or a tryst. I was enjoying working with a close friend in the alehouse, and focused on making a good impression on everyone there (at faire, because of my copious cleavage and inclination to flirt all the time, most people instantly peg me with a bad reputation. I was trying to work against this).

But I DID flirt with Scotsman. He flirted with me, too. He threw pretzels at me, we told bad jokes, I giggled a lot...basically, we were acting like kids with mutual crushes on each other.

Not that I realized this- oh no! I just knew that he was fun and we were instantly friends.

I might have started to have an inkling when my boss at faire, a friend of his, pulled me aside to ask my intentions regarding him. And to threaten my life if I hurt him.

I might have also started to realize it when, on a Walmart trip for supplies, he and I chased each other through the store for half an hour, zapping each other with static electricity and laughing our butts off.

This wasn't a 'love at first sight' thing. I was still dating the 19 year old. I was still checking out other attractive people. He seemed to be having a crush on another ale wench. We were just friends, really.

But every time he was near, I found myself creating excuses to touch him. Just a hand on his shoulder, really, or a friendly spontaneous hug.

And he kept bringing me coffee in the mornings during my shift, and feeding me things like smoked salmon after hours, and giving me little massages when I was exhausted (and on the day when it hit 112 degrees, a washcloth sponge bath during my shift to keep my temperature low).

And then there was this night where we stayed up to watch shooting stars, cuddled together in his papasan chair, and fell asleep together.

And then the morning that he walked me to my tent, and didn't even try to kiss me.

And the time he picked me up (I am not a tiny woman, I have *never* been just picked up by a man before), and carried me around while I giggle/screamed.

And those delightful few nights that we spent together, sans sex, just talking and cuddling and sleeping together.

Needless to say, the youngin' and I parted ways (I'm a one-man woman, what can I say?), and Scotsman and I began dating.

He took me on one of the best first dates of my life. (During which total strangers told us how adorable and happy we look together....a theme which has continued throughout our relationship)

It wasn't long before we met each other's parents and family. And started spending every weekend together. And then moved in together.

We don't have a movie-perfect relationship. I wouldn't trust it to last if we did. But he constantly impresses me with his ability to listen, communicate in a mature fashion, tease me into being more playful and less serious, and show his love in genuine ways.

We fight. We talk. We cuddle. We plan for the future. We tease each other. We trust. We love.

And despite all the hurdles we have in front of us at any given time, I think we both put our relationship as a priority.

I'm fairly certain I couldn't find a man better suited to me, whose personality compliments and opposes mine in ways that make me grow and learn, while feeling supported.

And this is only the beginning....

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