Thursday, 11 January 2018

A touch of romance

I have a romantic streak. I like those little things that make a relationship soft at the edges, that add a magical tingle to the everyday routine. I like it when an unexpected gesture of tenderness or fondness leaves me feeling slightly gooey inside.

Jenny's not quite so romantic. Too much lovey-dovey affection and she declares me a big slop-bucket and waits for me to come down to earth again.

A survey of attitudes to romance found that it isn't by any means dead. Some 76 per cent of us would like more romance in our lives, though 57 per cent avoided romantic gestures for fear of being "cheesy". Excuse me? What's cheesy about being romantic? It's a welcome impulse in a world that can be harsh and brusque and unforgiving.

So what do people find romantic? Holding hands, cuddling, a surprise gift, a walk together, a bunch of flowers, breakfast in bed, a surprise trip, a candlelit dinner, a home-cooked meal and a love letter were the most popular choices.

And what was decidedly unromantic? Too much mobile phone use, being rude to waiters, poor personal hygiene and so-called "chivalry" (usually something that implies women are inferior in some way and need help - like ordering for them at a restaurant). Though predictably, 93 per cent of over 45s still thought chivalry was a great idea.

Personally, I love holding hands and cuddling, but I'm not so good at surprise gifts. I do make us breakfast in bed on Sundays, but candlelit dinners aren't my thing. And I've never written a love letter in my life. I just don't have the right turn of phrase. But all sorts of things are romantic. Like a fond kiss at a famous landmark. I've kissed on the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, kissed by the Grand Canal in Venice, kissed on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

If romance ever died, it would be a sad day for the human race.

20 comments:

Joanne Noragon said...

You make me smile today. Thank you.

Bijoux said...

Considering Valentine's Day is my favorite holiday, I say YES to all of those romantic gestures! I think the only thing my husband could do that would seem cheesy to me is a Hallmark type of card that goes on and on. If anything, it would seem insincere because it would be completely out of character for him.

How grand to have kissed at all of those landmarks. The only ones I can come up with are Central Park and the Grand Canyon.

John Gray said...

I'm with Jenny

nick said...

Joanne: I'm pleased to have made you smile!

Bijoux: I like Valentine's Day as well, but a lot of people think it's just sentimental nonsense and commercial hype.

I've been to Central Park (Manhattan) but I don't recall kissing there. Maybe at Strawberry Fields? I've never been to the Grand Canyon.

nick said...

John: Oh, you party-pooper, you disappoint me. I'd always assumed you and Chris were romantic souls. Clearly I assumed wrong....

tammy j said...

I do think men are the true romantics. even for all the hype of Madison Avenue.
they seem to be the real deal.
I came home once and he was in the kitchen. I know it's cliche' to say it but it's true... it was a MESS! that was years before all the chefs and cooking shows with men cooking everywhere.
he truly had used almost every pan we had. he turned and said with that gorgeous grin of his...
" I wanted to cook for you." it was very romantic.
it was also very fun doing dishes with him! :D

helen devries said...

But cuddling is normal..isn't it? Or am I missing something?

kylie said...

John is a total romantic, all those sweet things he does for Chris. Just don't tell him.

I remember watching David Attenborough once talking about a fossil and how romantic it was to hold an animal that died thousands of years ago and I realised he was right. I'm a romantic about lots of stuff but I can also be a total cynic. Funny that

Polly said...

Flowers, holding hands, a cuddle and a love letter would be my top 4. I like chivalry. Originally meant as courtesy and honor, now sadly given a bad press by feminists. I’ve kissed in the Louvre in Paris, St Vitus Cathedral in Prague, Ayers Rock in Australia and on top of Mount Snowdon among the clouds!

nick said...

Kylie: Me too, a strange mixture of romantic and cynical. And I'm not at all cynical about romance. Go figure.

Polly: No, I don't see a lot of chivalry these days, and when I do it's usually the old-fashioned blokes who still think opening a door for a woman is a magnificent altruistic gesture. I intend to kiss at a few more famous landmarks before I shed my mortal coil....

Snowbrush said...

I'm in a 46 year marriage during which we spend an hour a day "cuddling"in bed in a non-sexual manner. We also cuddle with out four cats. I would say that romance has a place in all of this, but romance doesn't have to end in overt sexuality.

nick said...

Snowbrush: An hour's cuddling sounds wonderful. I don't have any cats to cuddle though, just a human being! I agree, romance and overt sexuality are quite different things.

Dave Martin said...

Hugs, kisses, holding hands, dealing with the occasional hard-to-reach spot, farting competitions after a particularly wind-provoking dinner....
Romance is where you find it.

nick said...

Dave: I can't say I find farting competitions romantic but hey, whatever floats your boat....

Rummuser said...

As corny as it may sound, my romance died nine years ago.

Nick said...

Ramana: It's sad that there's nothing romantic in your life any more. You don't even find films romantic? Or couples who're madly in love?

Rummuser said...

There are indeed occasions when I see enduring romance in others' lives. My comment was to talk about my personal life.

Nick said...

Ramana: Okay. I'm with you.

Secret Agent Woman said...

The tricky thing is not everyone has the same idea about what feels romantic or loving. Some people want affection, some affirming words, some gifts, some having things done for them... It's important to know what your partner wants from you and vice versa.

Me, I like the affection and words.

nick said...

Agent: I would find all those things romantic. But as you say, we need to discover what our particular partner finds romantic and what they find a total turn-off.