Anniversary of The Airport Chat: The start of Tony & Laura

Today is the anniversary of “The Airport Chat.” That’s what I consider to be the starting point of Tony and Laura.

On June 1, 2010 I was in the A.N.R. Robinson International Airport in Tobago trying to work magic to get Fashion Week Trinidad & Tobago (FWTT) committee members on the full flights back to Trinidad in time for events the next morning. Sitting in a corner seat in the Caribbean Airlines ticket office I noticed Tony walk in and vaguely recognized his handsome face. He saw me, sauntered over and greeted me with a big warm smile.

Tony reminded me he met me two nights before at the FWTT Launch event and turned on his famous charm. After speaking for a few minutes, I closed my laptop and invited him to sit down in the seat occupied by my workbag and luggage. We chatted about this and that for a good bit when I was called over to the check-in counter across the road. Knowing how fast you have to move to get seats on full CAL flights, I hurriedly asked him to watch my stuff and left the office.

At least 25 minutes passed when I thought “Oh my! I should really go back and get my stuff.” So I quickly walked in the ticket office.

“Hey, thanks for watching my bags. Sorry I took so long.” I said and picked up my bags and promptly walked out.

I headed back to my circle of colleagues gathered at the check-in area and felt a tap on my shoulder.

“Do you have a card?” Tony asked. “So I can contact you if I get any business leads.”

I fished for one out of my bag and gave it to him.

“When are you going to be back in Tobago?”

“Oh, I will probably come back to cool off after Fashion Week. I will definitely need it.”

“Well call me when you do so I can take you out to dinner or something.”

“OK,” I said just wanting to get back to my FWTT colleagues to discuss the latest crisis.

He leaned in to give me what I thought was the common kiss on the cheek for a goodbye.

Whaaaat? He looks like he is heading straight in. Surely he isn’t aiming for my lips. I just met this guy! And in front of everyone?

At the last second when I realized he wasn’t deterring from his straight course to my glossed-up lips, I turned my head. He caught the very edge of my mouth and cheek.

I pulled back with wide eyes.

 Maybe I imagined that. Surely he isn’t that bold.

Within the hour he sent me a text expressing how nice it was to chat with me. I responded … eight hours later. He texted again. I responded … eight hours later. (Hey … I was a busy girl.) And the cycle continued.

Now here we are five years later … married with two kids. In the simplest terms it’s been a head-spinning whirlwind.

I did ask him later if I was imagining the whole going-in-for-the-lips thing. He smiled.

“I just felt like kissing you. You should have seen your face!”

“But you JUST met me!”

“Ahhh … but I knew I loved you from the start.”

Oh darling Tony. You won my heart and gave me the every-girl dream of a guy falling in love with her at first sight.

Happy anniversary, sweetheart. I love you.

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