In Lidl this morning, doing my usual Saturday wander around the sliced sausages and raspberries, I was humming First Aid Kit's song "Long Time Ago" to myself. It's the tune that BBC 4 have been using to promote their new Danish drama "1864", so I'm sure you'd know it if you heard it. A little old lady was stood next to me at the bacon section and she commented what a pretty tune it was. I just said thank you, and then she said she had eaten some of the bacon last week and it was lovely. She was digging around for a later use-by date so I helped her find one.
This of course led to a little more conversation. Turns out her husband died a few weeks ago. She was also buying herself some flowers, because, she said, her parents always said to enjoy them while you can see them. She and her husband had been married almost 60 years. Then I got a brief summary of how they had grown up together in Bristol and how he had waited until she was 17 before asking her out. She was engaged at 21, married at 23 when he came out of the navy.
She told me that a man she has known a few years asked her to marry him last week, and that he wanted to take her to Europe for 3 months. She said "I'm nearly 84, I can't go to Europe!" I said she could go wherever she wanted to, to which she put her head on one side and said "yes, but not with him!"
I can't hope for 60 years of marriage, but I do at least hope that the years we have together are as happy as that lady's were with her husband.