I like to think that I am romantic. I love to surprise my girlfriend, I love seeing her smile and making her day a little better through the little things; things like organising a secret Easter Egg Hunt, or taking my girl to an amazing Edinburgh hotel for Valentines Day. Stacey is so important to me, and I am incredibly lucky to have her, to live with her everyday, to be able to curl up with her every night. I also love to spoil her – I know how hard she works, and how difficult it is for her to work a full-time job and study for a law degree at the same time, so I try to make sure she has time to relax and do some fun stuff too. And that’s why I organised a surprise trip to Paris for the two of us for our anniversary.
Come late November, Stacey and I will have been together for three years. Three years! That far surpasses Stacey’s next longest relationship, and is the longest I’ve ever been with anyone too. We’ve gone through so much – the vast majority of which we’ve never even alluded to on this blog – and I’m so proud that we’ve managed to make this point and that we’re happier than ever. November 26th is our anniversary (although our ‘official’ anniversary is 9th January, it’s complicated!) and Stacey and I planned to take the day off – it falls on a Monday this year, and it meant we could have a long weekend together.
Once we’d both booked the time off, I started thinking about what we could do. Whilst three years isn’t the longest period ever, I wanted Stacey to know how happy I one am with her, and so I started planning a weekend away as a surprise. And if it’s a romantic weekend away, where could be better than the City of Love, la belle Paris?
It helped that AirFrance flies direct from Edinburgh to Paris Charles de Gaulle – which meant that we wouldn’t have to fly on a horrible budget airline, and that we’d arrive in the centre of Paris – but what really made the decision for me was finding a stunning hotel in exactly the area of Paris I wanted us to stay in. I did really well – booking our flights one evening Stacey was doing school work, choosing the hotel in a lunch-hour and secretly putting an itinerary together which we’d both love. I started dreaming of the Louvre, and pastel coloured macaroons, medium-rare steak, the Eiffel Tower at sunset and walking along the Champs–Élysées – and the whole time, I managed to keep it from Stacey. It was all going so well! I’d even managed to convince Stacey that we were going to London for the weekend, just to cover my tracks!
And then it all went wrong. A few weekends ago, I headed down to London to go to a friend’s engagement party – it was fantastic to spend a weekend at home with the parents, and my mum was talking about a trip up to Edinburgh before Christmas to come and see Stacey and I. We were trying to plan a weekend where they all could come visit and see some of Edinburgh – and it just so happens that St Andrew’s Day falls in November – and around this day that a number of Scottish attractions open their doors for free! My mum and I planned for my family to come and visit over the St Andrews’ Day weekend – the weekend after Stacey and arrive back from Paris.
Now fast-forward a little – I’ve arrived back in Edinburgh, after a long day – very tired, a little hungover, and I’m unpacking my bag whilst telling Stacey about my weekend. It was then, whilst fretting about whether we’d be able to entertain my mum, step-dad and little step-brother, that I let the cat out of the bag. When Stacey asked why they didn’t just come visit the weekend before, I spoke the words:
Because that’s when we’ll be in Paris!
As soon as I said the words I’d clapped my hand over my mouth, and watched as Stacey took in what I’d said. “But we’re not going to Paris? Are we? We’re going to Paris?!” It was a little too late to take it back, so after uttering ‘shit’ just a few times, I spilled the whole tale, showed her the pictures of the hotel and broke the news that we’d be spending the day before our anniversary at DisneyLand. I guess it doesn’t need to be said that we’re both incredibly excited!
I’m still a little bit gutted that just one sentence ruined the entire surprise – I had planned on taking Stacey to a French restaurant the night before we flew out, and breaking the news to her then – but it is really nice to be able to talk about this trip with my girl. It’s too late to worry about the surprise aspect of it now – so instead, I’m going to ask for any hints or tips for a romantic trip to Paris! We’re away for three days, and we plan to spend one day in DisneyLand, and I’d also like to go to the top of the Eiffel Tower and see the view from the Arc de Triomphe – but any tips on places to eat, or things to do would be gratefully received! We have both been to Paris before, but it was a few years ago for both of us!
Alternatively, have you ever ruined a surprise by accident? Did it all turn out okay in the end?Carley