Home » Jan's Posts » Introducing … Jan Brigden

Introducing … Jan Brigden

As my English teacher at high school so rightly observed: “Janet, you appear to be wearing your rose-tinted spectacles again. This was supposed to be a horror story, not a love story.”

Okay, so my zombie was more Romeo than Psycho…

I confess I’m a dreamer. A thinker. A lover of all things romantic, from chocolate love hearts and long stem roses to a good old-fashioned emotionally charged moral dilemma. Tales of chance encounters and dates with destiny captivate me.

After all, I believe fate had more than a hand in reuniting me with the man I’m now married to.

More years ago than I dare to consider have passed, the two of us were at the same house party. Me, huddled in one corner of the lounge with my girlfriends, wearing my new red dress and sipping a glass of fizz. Dave, also in red, a V-Neck jumper which he insists to this day wasn’t patterned (it was!) rooted in the kitchen area (where else?) with several other blokes, clutching a can of lager. Our eyes met, numerous times, a little exchange of smiles here and there, but we never actually managed to speak to each other before my taxi arrived. I never forgot him though. I did spy him once from afar but felt too shy to go over and tap him on the shoulder in case he didn’t recognize me.

Fast forward fourteen years from that first encounter and there we both are at another mutual friend’s party. I hadn’t wanted to go as I’d recently come out of a long-term relationship and thought it would be all couples. My older sister talked me into it; said it was better than sitting on the sofa feeling sorry for myself. The first person I saw when I walked into the hall that night was Dave – very much single – having just come out of a relationship himself. We spent the whole evening chatting to each other. Much to the delight of our fellow guests, we even managed to sneak-in a slow dance.

It transpired that we’d been playing cat and mouse for years; frequenting the same pubs, clubs and restaurants, staying at the same holiday park, missing each other by two days.

But now we’d created our own love story.

Or to quote Mum’s words to me over dinner the next day: “Ships that pass no more, Jan…”

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58 thoughts on “Introducing … Jan Brigden

  1. That is such a sweet story, worthy of a little novel in itself! I remember you telling me it when we were on a bus on the way to see Lisa Jewel. And as for your teacher, you should have said ‘zombies need love too’ ; ) Being a dreamer is a much under-rated quality in a writer! x

    • Thanks so much, Yasmin. I too remember that day on the bus. It’s lovely to share the story. And you’re absolutely right about zombies needing love too. I said as much to my teacher. Not that it melted her heart at all. I just received “the look” x

    • Thanks so much for your kind comment, Liz. It’s happy endings all the way for me too.

      Jan x

  2. Jan this is a great addition to the blog and so romantic. I can just see the blokes propping up the sink and knocking back the lager. What’s that song? “People are always in the kitchen at parties” And a case of the ‘lady’ and the ‘gent;’ in red, too. Mind you, in all fairness, I do think that Zombies have their place in romance, too. But only when the reveal themselves as a bona fide zombie at the start of a relationship and not when one’s lived with them for three years. [that isn’t autobiographical, by the way]. I hope that when you do get published, part of this romance will feature in your novel and I’ll be able to say: “I know when that happened”.
    Keep up the good work Romaniacs, you make firing up the pc first thing in the morning worth the effort.

    • Oh, Lizzie, I remember that song well. And the video that went with it. Ha! Bona-fide zombie – great comment. And very true. Zombie as you mean to go on, as they say. And they do indeed have their place in romance. My teacher was having none of it though. Maybe I should have leant her my rose-tinteds? Lovely comments about my story and about our blog too. Very much appreciated by us all.

      Jan x

    • Thanks so much for commenting, Talli. Dave always says he remembers me glancing over the top of my wine glass at him. He clearly means fizzy water 😉

      Jan x

    • Oh Fran, thanks so much. What a lovely comment. Twas a great night! Seems like yesterday.

      Jan x

  3. It fair warms the cockles of your heart to hear such a wonderful story, Jan. You two were destined to meet!

    And it’s fascinating hearing the Romaniacs tales, they don’t disappoint on the romance side – ’tis the stuff of dreams…and books! lol
    xxx

    • Thanks, Debbie. I love that saying. And yes, I believe we were destined to meet as there have been many other weird & wonderful coincidences that have come to light since we’ve been together too. So glad you’re enjoying all our Romaniac tales.

      Jan x

    • Thanks, Debs. Yes, it’s funny to think, had I not gone to that second party, would we have bumped into each other at some point anyway. And if we had, would we still have both been single? Really appreciate your comment.

      Jan x

  4. Thanks for sharing, Jan – what a happy and romantic story! I’m so glad it worked out well for you. :0) Really looking forward to reading all the blog posts here – am just catching up – slightly bogged down with a new job!

    • So pleased you enjoyed reading my post, Clare. It brought back all sorts of vivid memories when I was writing it. I’m sure you’ll love reading all the other posts too. Sounds like you’ve been very busy. Hope your new job is going well.
      Thanks so much for commenting.

      Jan x

    • Aw, thanks Trevor. I do too. Can’t believe where the years have gone, to be honest. So glad you enjoyed reading it.

      Jan x

  5. Aw, that’s a lovely romantic story, Jan. I also love to keep a stash of rose tinted glasses with me at all times. Can’t imagine life without them! Well done on your first post, look forward to reading many more. xx

    • A woman after my own heart, Claire 🙂 I think I’ve got through more pairs of rose-tinteds than notepads, and that’s saying something. Thanks for your kind comments. Very much appreciated.

      Jan x

  6. This post was just what I needed to jumpstart my morning (am writing ‘eyes met’ scene).
    Thanks for sharing lovely story – and happy writing to us all! 🙂
    Jen

    • Ah, that’s so lovely to hear, Jen. Thank you. I love ‘eyes met’ scenes, writing them and reading them. Happy writing to us all indeed. Lovely of you to drop by.

      Jan x

  7. That’s a fantastic story, Janet! I’ve gone all mushy and am now wondering what happened to the crush of my life, a certain Jonathan Edwards, who became my obsession aged 11. I never spoke to him, not in five years of senior school. Big sigh. He had a big red Adidas sports bag with a hand-drawn ELO logo on it.And a very dodgy black trench coat. You never forget …

    • Ah, thanks so much, Rachel. I’m really chuffed you enjoyed reading it. So funny, as when I read your comment and saw the name Jonathan Edwards and the ELO logo part, I visualized the triple-jumper, hurtling down the track towards the sandpit, singing “Hold on Tight to your Dream” or whatever it was they sung. LOL! Not sure about the trench coat though 😉 But you’re right – you never ever forget.

      Jan x

  8. Wow Janet, that is brilliant and as people have said already a lovely love story! I don’t think I actually knew the whole story of how you met and look at you now so happy together after all these years!!

    • So pleased you enjoyed reading it, Karen. Thanks for your lovely comments. They’re really appreciated. I cannot believe how time has flown. Not sure Dave would say that – ha!

      Jan x

    • I love that word, Emily. I love the film ‘Serendipity’ too, starring John Cusack & Kate Beckinsale. Thanks so much for your lovely comment.

      Jan x

  9. Beautifully written Jan! I too believe in fate and it’s clear that fate is what brought you and Davey-boy together! I feel a romantic CD coming on! Love is in the air………😍

    • Ah, thanks Sarn. Much appreciated. I shall be unearthing my romantic CDs too now. Love is in the Air. Wasn’t that a song? Glad you liked the post. Seems like there are a lot of us who believe in fate 🙂

      Jan x

    • Thanks, Mo. I must admit, it brought it all rushing back to me. Really pleased you enjoyed reading it.

      Jan x

    • Honestly, Linn, you wouldn’t believe how many near misses Dave & I had. It is a lovely phrase, you’re right. I remember beaming from ear to ear when Mum said it to me. Thanks so much for your lovely comment.

      Jan x

  10. That’s such a truly lovely story Jan! I’m so glad you got your guy. It’s great to learn more about you and the other Romaniacs. Happy days! xx

    • Do you know, Elle, I can picture it like it was yesterday. So glad you’re enjoying the Romaniacs blog. We’re all so grateful for all the responses and support we’ve had. Thanks for taking the time to comment 🙂

      Jan x

  11. Just realised I hadn’t left a coment for you. I loved your first post. Yours and Dave’s is a wonderful story. All the best Jan xx

    • Ah, thanks George. Very kind. So glad you enjoyed reading about our story. I swear Dave’s still got that jumper in his wardrobe somewhere 😉

      Jan x

    • Thanks so much, Debs. Really appreciate your comments. Seems so weird now to think I might never have gone to that second party. Glad you enjoyed reading my post 🙂

      Jan x

  12. A beautifully written piece about two beautiful souls. Destiny always plays a hand in the paths we lead, and it has been an absolute joy to watch you both stroll in the garden of paradise together. Am so proud of all that you have achieved. Have very much enjoyed reading The Romaniacs introductory blogs. Can’t wait to see you blossom. xxx

    • Ah, thanks so much, Clare. So kind of you to write such lovely comments. Ever supportive 🙂 Really pleased you’ve enjoyed reading all the intros. Your good wishes are very much appreciated.

      Jan x

  13. Nice to meet you, Jan! Do you know, in all these time we’ve been Twitter and FB friends, I’ve never really seen a big picture of you, and it’s lovely to put a face to a name. Lovely intro post here, adore the rose-tinted glasses anecdote. XX

    • It’s really lovely to meet you too, Nicky. You’re right – we chatter away all the time, it is great to see your smiling face too. Thanks so much for commenting. You’ll be pleased to know I still have my rose-tinteds to this day 😉

      Jan x

  14. So lovely, Janet, full of your inherent warmth and positivity, well put together and very romantic. Of course 🙂

    • Thanks so much for reading my post, Lisa. So kind of you to leave such lovely comments. Really pleased you enjoyed it 🙂

      Jan x

  15. Hi Jan, lovely to ‘meet’ you. I did enjoy the story of how you and Dave met then missed each other before finally finding each other. I’m a believer in love at first sight; it happened to me, and I also know that writing dreams can come true. All best wishes with your work.

    • Hi Chris, thanks so much for taking the time to read my post and to write such a lovely comment. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Fab to hear about love happening at first sight for you too. How lovely! Thanks too for your good wishes. Much appreciated.

      Jan x

    • Aw, a woman after my own heart, Christina. I can vividly remember arguing my zombie’s case 🙂 but my teacher was having none of it. Thanks so much for sparing the time to read and comment on my post. It is very much appreciated.

      Jan x

    • Thanks so much, Sarah. I confess I really do love all things destiny related 🙂 Glad you enjoyed reading my post.

      Jan x

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