At 17 years old, I was working in a contemporary art gallery as the stockroom manager/shift leader in Orlando and my husband to be, Sean, was doing an internship at Epcot Center, working with hydroponics to grow plants, give behind the scenes tours of the nurseries, and living it up in Orlando. One afternoon, he walked into the store I worked in. Later I found out, the only reason he walked in to begin with was because he had caught a glimpse of me. The moment I saw him I was hooked. I went to greet him and offer help, as you are supposed to do in a good customer service oriented retail establishment. He used the excuse that he wanted to look at some watches, and in the process we exchanged small talk. I knew at that moment that he was the man I was going to marry. I didn’t know when or how it was going to work out, but I jut had faith that it would. He left shortly after, and I proceeded to tell a co –worker that I hoped he would come back and get my number. At that very moment, I felt someone walk in behind me, again, I turned around to greet the new customer, and it was Sean. I turned beat red, thinking he heard what I just told my colleague. He very simply just asked “Hey, could I get your number? Maybe we can go out sometime…” and I just said “sure.” Later that evening a friend of his, who was in town visiting from Texas, nearly ruined it for him. His friend called and left the most ridiculous message on my answering machine. “Hey Csilla, this is Todd and Sean. We thought we’d give you a call, call us back okay.” As soon as I heard the message … delete. What are we in the sixth grade? This guy gets my number and he can’t even call me himself? It’s not worth it. Well, about a week later, Sean came back by my store to apologize for not having called. He explained that he had a friend in town, but that he really did want to go out. We set up a lunch date right then and there for the following Tuesday. For some reason at that moment I happened to ask him his age. He responded with “24, and you?” to which my response was “17.” He just said “oh.”
“so I guess we’re not going out?”
“no, we’ll go out.”
Later I found out he researched the statutory rape laws in the state of Florida prior to our first date, but I guess you can’t blame him. He was being cautious and making sure he knew what was what ... you know ‘just in case’
Lunch was amazing. It was very simple. We went to TGI Friday’s in Orlando, at the Crosswalks. We could not be quiet long enough to look at the menu and order our lunch. Nearly two hours passed, our waitress gave up on us and asked us to grab her when we were ready to order! We were both hooked, the chemistry, conversation, and the company was just incredible. After lunch, I really wanted to make the date last a little longer, so I went out on a limb and asked him if he was interested in going to Epcot for the rest of the day. He said “Sure.” And later on I found out he thought it was awesome that I asked him to do something else. Since we both worked on Disney property, we had unlimited access to all the parks, which was excellent! We walked around the Around the World Showcase – he showed me where he worked, told me what he did… and the conversation just kept flowing. We came upon the lake, at the center of the World Showcase and I remember being in the middle of sentence when he just leaned in and gave me the most amazing, gentle, nice kiss. I remember being shocked, and just as if nothing happened I said “okay,” with a big smile and continued talking, never even skipping a beat. As evening approached, we left the park and headed back to his apt. He introduced me to his cat and we came back down. We had a nice goodbye kiss in the parking lot, and I headed home.
The entire drive home I was in Heaven. He seemed so incredible. Older, well put together, good ambitions, goals in life, organized, funny, not to mention beautiful with his blonde hair and deep blue eyes – I was gone. That day I completely fell in love with him – and it just got better as we got to know each other over the next couple of years.