Twenty two years ago today, in a bookstore at the local mall, there was a girl. She was only twenty years old, still in college, and was standing at the beginning of her life. She had no expectations of a romance -- she anticipated finishing college in the next year and a half, finding a job, an apartment, and starting life as a brave, single woman.
Down the hall from the bookstore, there was a boy. He had just finished college a couple of weeks before; he was 22 years old, and was working at a One-hour photo development store (that was back when people knew what film was).
The girl and the boy had never met. She used to walk down to the store where he worked because there was a Coke machine there, buy a Diet Coke, and walk back to work.
The boy and the girl had friends in common -- one friend in particular who had worked at both the bookstore and the photo development store. The boy had noticed the girl on her Diet Coke runs and had asked their friend for her phone number.
A few days before, the boy had called her and asked her to go out.
She had said "No." The girl's father was visiting, and she was committed to picking him up at the airport. Luckily, the boy was tenacious, and called back again. This time she ignored the fact that her father was still visiting, and said, "Yes."
Today, 22 years later, is the anniversary of their first date.
They both took a risk -- almost what could be called a blind date. They ended up as best friends, and 2 1/2 years later, were married.
And today, he's sitting across the table from me. I thank God for the courage to take risks, for the tenacity of a 22 year old boy, and for the blessings of 22 years. I thank God for unexpected outcomes and for the man that the boy became.