Darwin's post on arranged marriages sent us back down memory lane. We were about as close a case of love at first sight as makes no never mind, and I don't doubt that had we, by some odd twist of fate, been an arranged marriage, we would have flourished from the first moment. As it was, about a month after we'd been together, we were sitting one evening in the kitchen of Darwin's dorm. It wasn't a particularly comfortable or romantic (or hygienic) place, but women weren't allowed in men's rooms except for four hours on Saturday and Sunday, and all the common rooms were taken. We were snuggled up in the least objectionable corner of a couch, books and assignments all around, talking about the most absorbing subject in the world: Us. The future lay before us, open and rosy and full of potential, and we were talking about what we wanted to do with our lives. And I, in a moment of apprehensive daring, said, "I want to spend the rest of my life with you."
"And I want to spend the rest of my life with you," he said. We basked for a moment in a glow of mutual happiness. Then he said, "This doesn't mean we're engaged, does it?"
"No, of course not," I said, shocked. Talking about getting married was one thing. Actually getting engaged, at 18, with four years of college still ahead of us? That would just be impractical.
And we sat on in harmony. Romantic tension is plenty nice in its way (though really, it's more exciting in books or in retrospect than in the awkward longing of the moment), but even better is the joy of perfect mutual understanding and unity.
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