Two summers ago, April and I were in Europe and I was leaving Switzerland, bound for Berlin. I was to arrive there a few days before her (she was touring Germany with the Missouri State choir), but as I examined the train schedule from my cushy, express seat, I realized I could hop off at an upcoming station and board a train to Dresden where she currently was. I had her itinerary and knew what hotel she was staying in, and it was only six or so hours away…
Leaving my cushy, express seat, I boarded another train and had to stand all the way to Dresden. But I grinned the entire way, read while standing, looked over a guy’s shoulder while he played Heroes IV (in German!), and was thrilled the entire time. I didn’t need a seat for the same reason I didn’t need sleep. I was going to join the woman I loved.
When answering questions for my interview with Nathan just before the wedding, I told him when I knew April was the one. In retrospect, I don’t think I gave him the right answer. It wasn’t wrong, exactly; it was an answer, and one of the many times I realized and expressed my love for April, but it wasn’t the first time I realized that April was the one. No, it was on the train to a city with no local money, where I didn’t speak the language, arriving at almost two in the morning.
The next morning was the first time we said, “I love you.”