Allan Blackburn column

Owner of GB Antiques Allan Blackburn.
Owner of GB Antiques Allan Blackburn.

So, it’s been Valentine’s Day this weekend and the shops have been full of cards, flowers and hearts.

St Valentine’s Day may be over commercialised now but the exchanging of love tokens and cards was even more popular for the Victorians than it is today.

In our house, my wife Gloria would be very upset if we didn’t mark the occasion or give each other a treat.

We met 47 years ago and have been married for 44, but we still like to celebrate these occasions and spend time with each other as often as we can.

However, I do get annoyed with the prices of everything around this date.

We never go out on the 14th as the prices in restaurants can be double what they are normally, and as romantic as I try to be, after 47 years both Gloria and I hate getting ripped off.

Being a business that’s open 7 days a week, I always work weekends, but I do try and take every Tuesday off.

So on Tuesdays, I take Gloria out for something nice to eat.

Valentines or not, this week is no exception, we’ll go out on Tuesday as normal.

We’ll have just as nice a time, avoid the crowds and pay the normal price.

However, don’t think I’m a skinflint! Far from it.

I collect points at Mcdonald hotels and I usually have enough for dinner and an overnight stay which I give it to one of my children.

This time it’s my daughter Dawn’s turn to have the treat.

She’s got a nice weekend away with her boyfriend planned and she took her old Dad’s advice and avoided Valentines, when prices are high and availability is low.

We are quite competitive in our household and each year Gloria and I try and out do each other by getting the biggest card we can find.

She does expect a pressie from me, which is usually some nice flowers and maybe a bottle of champagne.

I receive a box of chocolates and a nice new shirt or a sweater.

It must be noted that Gloria will buy me a box of her favourite chocolates so she can help me eat them.

And they say romance is dead.