Once upon a time, I was working out at the gym under the instruction of my personal trainer (yes, I am a magazine editor cliché – you have my permission to roll your eyes). As I ran on the treadmill, she filled me in on the latest instalment of life with the boyfriend who wanted to dump her one day and couldn’t live without her the next. After listening to this saga for months, I finally gave in to my urge to judge. ‘I’m not saying dump him,’ I said. ‘I’m just saying, I don’t think a good relationship should be this much hard work.’ Then, for a laugh, I pointed at the guy running next to me and whispered, ‘He’s cute. Go out with him!’
Weeks later, she reminded me of this little aside. ‘He’s been coming in here for years and I’d never looked at him that way until you said that.’
That was five years ago. My personal trainer and the handsome treadmill runner are now happily in love and have two children. To this day I still get a thrill thinking about it. Yes, in my life I’ve made mistakes. God knows I’ve had plenty of days where I’ve done absolutely nothing of value. But there was that one time when I accidentally ignited a flame and paved the way for a union that’s resulted in two beautiful baby boys. So my existence hasn’t been a total waste.
It’s good to remember that life can hold such moments of joy, which is why in this issue we’ve collected people’s stories of how they met the love of their life. It can spring up in the unlikeliest of places. In a digitised, dating-app world, it’s so nice to know you could still meet The One in a Post Office queue or indeed on a treadmill. So I hope our stories give you a little inner glow today.
Elsewhere, the issue has something of an extraterrestrial glow, thanks to our cover star Jo Wood and her tales of a lifelong obsession with aliens. I promise I haven’t been at the wine. I just love a UFO story and I know I’m not the only one.
Whether you’re a believer or a sceptic, I know you’ll find her theories and passion for the subject fascinating and/or entertaining. I’ll be honest, it wasn’t that long ago that I thought the idea of Donald Trump as a world leader was stretching the bounds of reality. Suddenly all manner of extraordinary scenarios seem possible. Enjoy the issue.
A few things I’m coveting this week
Fluttery, flattering: batwings are back. Top, £39, warehouse.co.uk
Reinvent everything from jeans to a black dress with this. Belt, £105, black-brown.com
A staple with a cool 70s vibe. Bag, £250, lkbennett.com