They bonded over pumpkin pie, literature and ended up getting married two years later.
Thanksgiving brings in a lot of celebration and happiness in our rather monotonous life. However, for one woman it brought love in the most unexpected way possible. Dina Honour was holding her first Thanksgiving meal in November 1997. The then-27-year-old invited a group of New York City acquaintances who, like her, had opted to spend the holiday in the city. It was a difficult year for her as she was dealing with coming out of a bad relationship, reports CNN Travel.
She says, "I had slowly found my way back to a sense of normal, and was not looking for love." She was preoccupied with hosting her guests for the holiday. She'd asked each visitor to bring something to add to the buffet. Soon, her friends began to arrive, delivering Christmas greetings and carrying cornbread, pies, and cranberry sauce. Then Dina answered the door for one of her friends, only to discover he was accompanied by two mystery guests. It wasn't the type of party where unexpected guests were welcomed, so she was "not happy."
One of them was Richard Steggall, a 25-year-old British man on his first trip to New York. He'd come to the United States with a dear buddy who had a sibling in New York. Dina's brother was an acquaintance who had been invited to her party. They'd gotten up late on November 27th, having been out the night before. They were looking for a restaurant to eat at. However, due to the holiday, all restaurants would be closed. His American friend had a solution and said, "But I know of a party going on where they might have some food."
Richard initially realized that showing up unannounced was a bad idea when he noticed Dina's look when she answered her apartment door. However, he was "entranced" by Dina and she thought he was "very, very handsome." Dina approached Richard with a slice of pumpkin pie and whipped cream, a traditional Thanksgiving delicacy that is uncommon in the UK. Richard had never tried it before and was eager to get started.
They began to converse. Dina, who enjoys reading, brought up Shakespeare's Ophelia during the talk. Richard caught up on it and exclaimed, "Hamlet." After finishing their meal, the party proceeded to a bar. Dina and Richard were completely absorbed in one another there.
Richard was scheduled to travel back to London on Friday afternoon. Dina led him to the subway station, where they said each other farewell on the platform. She went back to her apartment and told her sister, "That's the man I'm going to marry." Richard had been seeing someone in London when he went to New York. When he returned to the UK, the first thing he did was to call that off. So, started a month of daily long-distance phone calls and the rare letter delivered across the Atlantic. Richard invited Dina to London for Christmas and she agreed.
Richard said, "It all happened so quickly between November and December -- and with working selling flowers and selling Christmas trees, the whole of the end of November, and the whole of December, it's full-on, it's sort of 20-hour days." He took Dina to meet his parents who absolutely loved her. They were pretty sure of each other and flew back and forth between London and New York to see each other.
Then, in the spring of 1998, Richard quit his job at the flower market and moved to New York for three months, planning to spend the summer with Dina. However, it turned into something permanent and he ended up with a job at United Nations. The couple's story began on Thanksgiving and extended through Christmas. So on New Year's Eve 1999, Richard proposed on the eve of the new millennium. Thus began a new chapter in their relationship. They got married in April 2001 in New York and welcomed two sons in the following years.
They moved to Cyprus with Richard's Job and embraced the Mediterranean lifestyle. Richard and Dina haven't lived in the United States in almost a decade, but Thanksgiving is still a significant day for the couple; after all, it was the holiday that brought them together. Richard says, "It's always a date in the calendar where we start to reflect on our lives and what's happened and everything, the whole story from start to finish."
He added, "Dina offering me that pumpkin pie was the start of that conversation, which has now been going on for 25 years."