Feb 16, 2022 - Things to Do

Your sweet D.C. love stories

Illustration of a pattern of envelopes with hearts sealing them.

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

In honor of Valentine's Day, a few of our readers shared their D.C. love stories with us.

And because it would be selfish to keep these sweet stories to ourselves, we wanted to share them with you, too.

Opposites attract

"My now-husband and I met in 2000, connected through my college friend who had grown up with his family. We had each been in D.C. for about four years... back when the taxis operated on a zone system, and the Metro hadn't yet extended to Columbia Heights.  

He's a Manhattan boy; I am South Texas all the way. He was raised Jewish; I was raised Catholic. He was a world-traveled polyglot; I was not (am now). He grew up with enough money; I have been rubbing pennies together since I started working at some too-tender an age.  

In 2000, he lived on 14th and Corcoran and I lived on Logan Circle. We talked for 3 months — ON THE PHONE — before we managed to meet in person. Everyone said take it slow... don't share all your crazy family trauma... keep your dysfunction to yourself. Ha, as if! 

We went to The Saloon on U Street, which had just opened that year (thanks, Kamal!) and sat and drank beer for like 6+ hours and talked about all of it, without abandon or censorship.  We started dating a few weeks later. We were talking marriage within another few months. We moved to Columbia Heights together after a whirlwind 6-month trip to Southeast Asia. We had a spectacular wedding under an amazing harvest moon. Our dog Bria was the ringbearer.

We still live in D.C. Our two amazing daughters are at public schools in D.C. I work in D.C. We know every corner of Rock Creek and we love this city. We have made the best friends of our lives here. I am so proud of this city, what it has been, and what it can become if we start to put love, generosity, and justice at the center of all the decisions we make as a community." 

- SE

A smooth talker

"I used a West Wing pick-up line when I first met my wife. When I proposed to her 18 months later, I again quoted 'The West Wing' asking, "What's next?" Only in D.C. can a fictional president spur romance years after leaving office (and television). Bartlett for America forever!"

- BT

The long and the short of it

"I was born and raised in D.C.  Grew up one block north of Florida and Connecticut.  My husband and I met in Georgetown at the Pall Mall.  It was Sunday night of Labor Day weekend 1989.  He asked me to marry him 17 days later.  We eloped on Dec. 1, 1989. It has been a good 32 years.

The juicy details: It was about 6 o’clock at night. My female friend and I went in.  I sat down and went to pull the barstool out for my friend and he was sitting on the stool. He had paid his check and was getting ready to leave when we walked in. He saw me and sat back down, hence why I thought the stool was empty. He said something and my friend asked me what he said. I replied, 'I think he said my name is Gary,' which became an inside joke because he said, 'I didn't mean to scare you.' We laughed and talked and drank until the lights came on. 

We met up the next night and he confessed that he had a girlfriend who he had seen earlier Monday afternoon when she had a layover at Dulles and he broke up with her at the airport. They had been dating for a couple of years.  We went to the Uptown Theater on Monday and saw, 'When Harry Met Sally.' That Thursday, I told my mom I was going out with him again and she said, 'you're going to marry that guy.'  My response was, 'yeah like the 57 other guys I dated this year.' I was a serial dater at 29, having been in a ten-year relationship that ended in late 1987.  My parents also met in D.C. in May 1953 and married at the end of August that same year. " 

-MK

These stories have been lightly edited for clarity.

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