The sun shining, the birds singing, the above-freezing temperatures – that’s what I love about February 14. The joy in my heart lies in the signs of spring, not romance.
I don’t ignore Valentine’s Day. Nor wish it away. I honor it with a trip to Romolo’s chocolates to buy an assortment for my daughter. While there, I was jostled (and this was last week) through the short aisles in search of confectionary perfection. What we do for love.
Today is also my brother’s birthday. Although only those close to him know the exact date. In order to escape persecution at school and work, he typically lists it as Feb. 15. My mother resisted the urgings of the hospital nurses to name him Valentino. Common sense was more powerful than the drugs.
I’m not sure when my feelings toward Valentine’s day turned away from romance. Childhood scars, I’m sure. The competition at school for the most gushy cards, most chocolates, and then, in high school, flowers, probably did the trick. I had braces through the eighth grade and made it to “Sweet Sixteen and Never Been Kissed.”
Kissed plenty of toads since then. A couple of princes too. None seemed to know what to make of Valentine’s Day, other than to expect that some chocolates and perhaps some flowers might get them some favors in return.
The key to my heart lies with plane tickets to points south, where strawberries are in season and the biggest worry is tracking sand, not mud, into the house.
Until that day arrives, I’ll also be skipping the line for the chocolate-covered strawberries at Romolo’s. You can make your own in less time than it takes to wait. All you need are your favorite chocolate and some strawberries.
Now that’s sweet.
Lots of hugs and kisses,