Love. Ain't it grand? It comes in all shapes and sizes, and no two loves are the same.
The Huffington Post Australia celebrates love in all its forms with the How We Met series in the lead up to Valentine's Day.
Sali Sasi, 35, and Nathan Sasi, 33.
How long have you been together?
Nathan: We've been together for two years but I asked her to marry me after only a few months of dating. I didn't want to waste any time when I knew she was the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.
How did you meet?
Sali: We actually met through mutual friends around six years ago, however hadn't seen each other in years. I was single for well over a year and was out for dinner with a girlfriend when the Head Chef who I was staring at throughout dinner came over and said "Hi Sali". At that moment I didn't recognise him and was thrown because I thought it was cute. My response was "I don't know you", and with embarrassment I turned my back on him. That's when he mentioned we'd met before and the rest is history -- we've been together ever since.
Nathan: We had previously met five or six years before we started dating, but hadn't seen on another in years. I was running a restaurant at the time when Sali came in to dine. As the Executive Chef I was in charge of calling all the orders to the staff but Sali thought I hadn't graduated to cooking, in her words to her girlfriend, "Oh look how cute that apprentice is".
What drew you to one another?
Sali: The night at the restaurant, I remember looking over at him and saying to my girlfriend that I loved that he was tall, broad and covered in tatts -- but he had this easy going, fun energy with the way he interacted with people. His cheeky smile was definitely one thing I fell for back then and still do now.
Nathan: She's beautiful, easy going, fun, ambitious and resilient -- there's no denying that -- but Sali's strength in overcoming breast cancer made me realise that with her in my life, together we could overcome anything as a couple.
What do you like most about them?
Sali: One of the things I love most about Nathan is how much love and respect he has for the women in his life. He is always making time for his mum and grandma to call and say hi or to go and visit. I think the way a man treats the women in their life says a lot about how he will treat his wife and children.
Nathan: I love the continual support she shows our relationship. I know whenever I have a bad day she's there to turn it around. I think when you have such a loving and supportive partner it helps you become your best self and therefore the relationship naturally is going to benefit from it.
What is your favourite memory?
Sali: One night when Nathan organised to take me out to dinner, we both got really dressed up as it was a special dining event at Momofuko. When we arrived for our romantic night we were placed at a share table with two guys who just happened to be Nathan's mates. They were dressed in sneakers, trackpants and a Rabbitohs hat. We couldn't stop laughing. To be honest the fact our romantic night turned to an awkward date for four actually made the night! Pretty sure we laughed all through dinner.
Nathan: I tried to take her to a romantic dinner once at Momofuko for a special event they were having, we dressed up in black tie and when we got there we got seated at a table with two of my friends who were both dressed in trackpants and well it didn't make for a romantic setting. She was such a good sport though and we ended up having a great time all the same.
What is your secret to long lasting love?
Sali: Always make time for date nights. When you move in together especially it can be easy to fall into routine but we made a promise that we would never stop dating one another. We're always surprising each other, be that with love notes around the house, secret dinner dates, romantic getaways -- you name it. When you take the time to do those things, to show that you appreciate them or that they're on your mind -- it helps keep the spark alive.
Nathan: People live such busy intense lives these days. Always take the time to tell your partner how much they mean to you and how much you appreciate them. Gratitude for your loved one goes a long way.
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