Happy Valentines Day
Nothing very much to do with Arundel.
Nothing much to do with Antiques.
Just a few bunches of flowers to remind
us that Spring isn't too far around the corner
My husband Nass, is, although he would
tell you otherwise, a true romantic.
Not that we always celebrate Valentines,
but some years we do.
One year our favourite restaurant,
Paperdelle's, was completely booked solid
Paperdelle is a lovely little Italian
restaurant in Arundel High Street.
It was started by Bruno,
a friend of ours several years ago
It's now owned by Clive,
Bruno's son, and has spread
beautifully to provide
In those days, it was just the upstairs.
Very Italian, fairly small, gorgeously intimate,
and it booked up very quickly.
On this special evening,
Nass had a quiet word with Bruno,
who was a friend of his.
They lugged a small table down
the narrow winding staircase
into Arundel High Street,
and next to the bench right in the centre.
There we sat, complete with candles, wine, and
waitress dashing back and forth across the street.
Wrapped up against the cold.
A memorable evening.
One other Valentines day,
I was working as a vegetarian chef
at West Dean College.
They have the most beautiful Victorian Gardens there.
I used to work with Eric, the head chef,
and we would regularly wander
over to the gardens,
early in the mornings.
We'd choose and pick produce that would
go in to my veggie dish of the day.
Salvador Dali was a regular visitor
when it was owned by
He sponsored both Dali and the artist Magritte.
You will still see paintings in the house and
even a Dali plastic tree in the grounds
It's the most wonderful
place to visit,
or study, or work.
Anyway, the reason I mentioned it
twice a day.
I would return home,
late and extremely tired.
One Valentine's evening,
Nass had prepared a meal ready for
when I arrived home.
Well, it smelled so.
The table was laid ready,
my son Jay was ready to wait on table.
I was exhausted, but when Nass suggested
going for a drink before dinner,
I thought I should,
as he had gone to so much trouble.
He suggested going to see Bruno,
at Paperdelles, for a glass of wine.
"It's Valentines they'll be booked solid."
No...he was determined.
So..we went and he suggested
we sat in the corner table, with a
sign on it.
"We can't sit there, its reserved"
" Yes we can, I reserved it"
"Well, what about the dinner at home?"
"I fried onions to make it smell"
The aperitif was ordered and ,
brought by a chuckling Bruno.
I noticed in the middle of the table
a beautiful, small, heart shaped box.
On opening it, there were
hand made chocolates, inside.
Now, I KNOW what you are thinking,
because I thought the same.
After dinner, I munched my
way through ALL those chocs,
which is something I NEVER do.
No, really, I am a one at a time ..savour it..person
Not a ring in sight!
Nass laughed like a drain,
(whatever that means)
" You thought there was a ring in there"
" No, I didn't"
We DID eventually get engaged.
Just not that night.
Apart from that and the
nausea after all those chocolates,
it was the perfect
Valentines Night out.
I hope you have a wonderful Valentines
and a lovely day today.
Whatever you are up to.