Spiders and iDJ, Sittin’ in a Tree



I couldn’t resist using that childhood teasing rhyme, because it is rather perfect for the story I am about to tell.

It has come to my attention that I have never shared the story of how Spiders came to be living in a tiny town in the west of Ireland with the wonderful iDJ. Since we just celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary, perhaps it is past time, or a titch late? Well, I do have a shitty sense of time, and it feels like a few weeks ago rather than 10 years.

We met online. Usually people in Ireland express amazement at this, but it seems perfectly natural for us, being geeky and all. 
I had been having poor luck finding anyone online to date in Cleveland, Ohio. When I met a man in person it did not go well (a man my dog decided was dangerous and physically put himself inbetween us, and an intelligent long-haired redhead who in person was super-critical of me from my appearance to my interests). I decided to move my search parameters to encompass the country that my father loved so much – Ireland. It was mostly a lark, to me – maybe something would come of it, maybe not – but I’d meet some Irish lads either way! My mindset was: sure, I’d import one or export myself if love was found: but I expected it to take years. 

Without even a photo of me uploaded yet, I had hits. Very disappointing hits. A cocaine fiend, a man who seemed to hate me because of my nationality (why talk to me, then?). Considering this was in 2004, and it actually took effort for someone to talk to a strange woman 3,000 miles away – why be an ass? 

I can’t actually recall iDJ’s first communique. He contacted me first, despite not seeing a picture of me, carefully chosen and whatnot, like you do. He had a photo up, however. One of my first comments was ‘shame your hair isn’t longer’.

His response? ‘It is!’

And that started us off: a mutual agreement that men should have long hair if they can.

He first came to see me in Cleveland in July 2004. We were mostly in love by then, even with all the terrible-connection Skype calls (he still had dial up, I was on satellite) and plain old phone calls we had shared. He was such a romantic soul, and passionate about his interests (music and photography especially). We both agreed that if there wasn’t a ‘spark’ when we met in person, then we would at least have a very good friendship.

We did have the spark, right there and then in the airport parking garage. I think we added another hour to the parking fee by making out while leaning against the back bumper of my Firebird. 

Even better, once I got him home my good boy Spot jumped straight into his arms, and my very good dog Shade (RIP) didn’t try to insinuate his huge body between ours like that other jerk. I do trust my furry ones to be a good judge of character.

They were right, too. iDJ came to see me in Ohio again in October, and I went to meet him and most of his friends and family in Mayo in late December ’04/January 2005. He asked me to marry him on New Year’s Eve day, at the top of ‘our’ mountain, which we can see from our house to this day.

Going back to Ohio without him was hard.

The next time we met in person, we got married. The wedding itself is a whole other tale!

Ten years on, we haven’t killed each other, still kiss each other goodbye every time one of us leaves the house, and his hair? Down to his arse and still growing.

21 responses »

  1. Now that is quite a love story……kind of a fast-forward courting period and it sounds like you did just fine for yourself! I can’t wait to hear the wedding story!

      • It’s not always infallible – narrowly escaped from marrying someone who not only put his hands on me (once) but threatened to kick my very very sick cat. Needless to say I was out the door immediately. Actually- the threat of kicking the cat was what sent me out the door, the physical fight happened well after I’d left. Ass.

  2. That’s a lovely story! I found J online as well, though our story isn’t quite that smooth. Congratulations on your anniversary and may you see many more. ❤

    • Thank you, hon! I guess it does sound smooth – the hard parts were saying goodbye at the airports and the immense amount of work and paperwork it took to move me, all my crap, plus Spot and the huge dog over to Ireland.

  3. First let me say I’d sworn I’d followed your blog already, but just discovered I had not. How embarrassing! The problem has now been remedied.

    I love your how-I-met-my-husband story, and find its so amazing you met each other despite living in separate countries. I met my husband in a convent where we both worked, and he also had super long, rock-star hair. He has short hair now for his job, but I fondly remember those early days. My husband’s grandparents came over from Ireland and his family has a huge presence in the Minneapolis Irish parade (we live in another city). Lot’s of Irish pride with him, but sadly we’ve never been able to afford a trip overseas. Your photos showing the irish countryside are beautiful.

    I definitely want to hear the wedding story, so you’d better get on it!

    • I thought you had followed too. No matter, I’m not prolific, so you didn’t miss anything!
      Loving a man with hair is so easy isn’t it? Most Irish fellas are bald early (I actually blame Irish genes for the prevalence of bald dudes in the us), so getting a man both Irish and hairy is rare! You met at a convent? We do need to hear THAT story!

      • The quick version: I first met my husband when I was 15 and he was 16, and we both worked at the catholic convent in town…this was a place for old and retired nuns, and for nuns in poor health. He was a dishwasher while I served food. He had thickest, longest, rock-star hair I’d ever seen, and we had our first kiss in the mop closet at the convent (not just our first kiss together, but the first kiss ever for both of us)! After about 6 months I dumped him because I didn’t want to get serious with my very first boyfriend…he hasn’t let me live that down to this day. We got back together 11 years later and the rest is history.

  4. Trust the dog! Always trust the dog. What a lovely story. He got my vote when he came to see you instead of him insisting you go there first. A gentleman, there. Glad you both dodged the odd ones and found each other. And now the rest of the story…(as the classic radio storyteller, Paul Harvey, used to say.)

Thoughts? Gardening tips? Cocktail recipes? Don't just like and leave, please - I can talk for Ireland and would love to prove it!

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