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  • Columbia Hillen

Birds do it

Growing up in communist Romania we never had Valentine’s Day. We had Dragobete and Martisor and it never really meant a shopping spree – it wasn’t too much one can shop for, even chocolate was something one dreamed of and rarely tasted.

As a recovering shopaholic though, I would still take any opportunity to visit the shops, but I wonder whether we are not missing the point. Isn’t Valentine’s Day a celebration of love in all its most romantic form? But, you might ask, what is romantic? Is it a candlelight dinner, is it that piece of jewelry or the holiday in the sun? Does romantic mean we need to put our hands in our pockets to prove that we love our soul mate?


Valentine's Day in Paris

I don’t find it that easy to define what romantic means for me, but again, maybe that’s what it’s all about – the thought we put in redefining ‘romantic’ each year. Remembering at least one day that we are blessed with the ability to love. All we have to do is learn how to express it. And we continually change, so the meaning changes with us.


It’s funny sometimes how we show our love by offering exactly the kind of gift we would like to receive. And many times we don’t even realize it and inevitably are disappointed that we don’t get the reaction we expect.

Buy maybe that’s why is so complicated to be romantic, because it means leaving yourself out of the equation, keeping only the love you have for the other and then start discovering who your soul mate is and what they really want.


In the metro-boulot-dodo world we live in, how many of us ‘have the time’ to do that? Or how many of us have the courage to go on a search like that? You never know what we might find… And will we like it?

And that’s where every commercial venue comes to ‘rescue,’ at this time of year, from restaurants to travel agencies to jewelry shops and, of course, flower shops. So much, that if I presume for a moment that we still live in a pagan society, I guess Valentine is a pagan saint of commercial venues – that’s where many of us might go to pay our homage when this Friday comes.


Or we might just try to simply find out what romantic is all about.

Birds do it… surely so can we.

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