Wren Bulawin

[Valentines’ Writers Comp 2023] Valentine’s Date

Often, when I think of Valentine’s Day, I used to be disgusted at the sight of couples giving each other presents, and the abhorrent amount of red and pink everything. The sugar overload and the cheesy lines. But in these past few months, I’ve started to notice the beauty in this particular romantic holiday. And much like the movies, he has managed to change how I feel about Valentine’s Day and life in general. 

A knock sounded at my door. I looked down at my outfit: a short dress made of white tulle with red hearts, a white fuzzy shawl wrapped around my shoulders, a pair of bright red heeled sandals, and a red ribbon in my curled hair, specifically for the occasion. Curiosity piqued my interest as I wondered where he was taking me for the evening. 

The door opened and my boyfriend Jacob stood on the porch. His navy-blue button up and dark gray slacks made me smile, as he knew it was my favorite formal outfit of his. He held a bouquet of a dozen red roses, perfect for Valentine’s Day.  

My eyes lit up at the sight of him and I could see him do the same, a bright smile transforming his face.

He stepped inside my house and I immediately crushed him in a hug. He wrapped his arms around me.

“Happy Valentine’s Day,” Jacob said as he handed me the roses. I thanked him with another hug and went to set them in a vase.

“Where are you taking me tonight?” I asked. But he just smiled mysteriously.

“You’ll see once we get there.” 

“Alright. I trust you.”


When we arrived at the place, my eyes took in the scene before me. I couldn’t believe there was a place like this in the small town we lived in.

There was an ivory fountain that spouted crystallized water, as if it was in mid-stream. The water in the basin was frozen to create a crystal pond. Around the edges of the basin, was every flower imaginable. From lilacs of vibrant purple to roses, they circled the edge, a light powder of freshly fallen snow dusted each petal. Cobblestone pathways zigzagged the entire garden, snow falling in the cracks of each stone. 

Jacob led me to a black bench under a vine archway. Like with everything in the beautiful snow-covered garden, snow and frost dusted the leaves and vines tangled in the archway.

“This is beautiful, Jacob!” I exclaimed, a note of pure joy in my voice.

“Anything for you. I’m glad you like it.” He replied, lacing his hand in mine. 

Jacob reached over and brought out two cups. “Well, I thought we could keep up the tradition and have some ice cream.”

I laughed slightly, the melodic sound filling the air as I remembered the little tradition Jacob and I kept up since freshman year of high school. He gave me the cup filled with strawberry ice cream and kept the chocolate one for himself.

“How’d you even find this place?” I asked him after I had finished my ice cream.

“It’s a secret. Wait, close your eyes and breathe.” He wrapped his arms around me, hugging me from behind. 

“Why?” I chuckled, as I felt myself leaning against him. 

“Because, I smell snow.” Just as he said that, snow fell all around us, the light fluff covering everything even more like powdered sugar on a cake.

My mouth opened, as I realized what he said. “Jacob. That’s from Gilmore Girls. Lorelai said that. You watched that?!” As he nodded, my smile grew bigger and I knew he was perfect.

I couldn’t have asked for a better Valentine’s Day date other than going on one with the guy who made me see things in a different light, with rose-tinted glasses.



What Ayala Bulldog Times staff had to say about this submission:

“I enjoyed this piece specifically because it seemed the most realistic out of all. For some people, Valentines Day is a holiday they do not look forward to as often, since they may not have that special someone for themselves. However, this person shows that once you find that special someone for yourself, you begin to appreciate what Valentine’s Day is all about–a day to share love for someone you value and care for truly.” – Maximus Hemming, Staff Writer

“The reason I chose her story was because it was like a real life event put into words. Her choice of words worked well with visualizing the events as they went down. We can picture the hand holding, the scene, the ice cream, maybe even the emotions on their faces. Everything was so sweet and personal and was put into amazing perspective, I could only imagine what Jacob will do next Valentine’s Day.” – Dallas Mangold, Staff Writer

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