Be my Valentine

A priest, Roman soldiers, forbidden love, a poet, pagan fertility rites and a church membership drive.

Valentine’s Day has a rather interesting history. The tale begins with a Catholic priest, Saint Valentine, who married Roman soldiers in secret, an act forbidden by law. His ‘Love is love’ philosophy led to his own unfortunate end, executed on 14 February 270 AD. Adopted later as a saint’s day by the Catholic church to coincide with a pagan festival, it wasn’t until the Middle Ages that the poet Chaucer linked the day to romantic love. The rest is history.

Despite the commercialisation of Valentine’s Day, it’s worth keeping in mind the underlying sentiments – romance, thoughtfulness and kindness; giving without the expectation of getting something back.

Instead of being cynical about the day’s origins, why not make it work for you, your own way.

We all love good surprises, so why not be creative and choose activities that please your partner rather than yourself. Interaction and surprise are the key, so perhaps Valentine’s Day could be a new beginning, making time out together a regular event.

Romance is not gender-specific, so neither are our suggestions. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Share an activity that you can talk about – a walk, car trip or train trip to a new place.
  • Frame an old photo that your partner has always loved.
  • Pretend you are tourists for a day. Hire a hotel room and open a bottle of bubbly.
  • Pack a picnic and head up to Burleigh Hill to watch the sunset and city lights.
  • Fix something or do a chore your partner has been harping about.
  • Spring Valentine’s Day on your partner a day early.
  • Do something totally left field and unexpected for you as a couple.
  • Write down what your partner means to you and give them the letter.
  • Find a creative way to bring back romance to your relationship.
  • Some of us never get around to asking, so why not now?

If you’re keen to follow tradition, here are six places romantic enough for any date night without dinting the card too much:

Willow Dining Room Burleigh Heads Ph: 5576 4110

SoPo Dining Room Southport (ask about the $60 per couple ‘Hump Day’ date night) Ph: 5528 4422

BSKT Café Nobby Beach Ph: 5526 6565

The Little Plate Burleigh Heads Ph: 0499 724 303

Can Tho Kitchen Bar Runaway Bay Ph: 5529 0098

Potager – A Kitchen Garden Carool Ph: 5590 7403

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NOTE: This article was published in The Sun on 13 February 2018.