I’m so ready to meet someone, I thought.
My last relationship hadn’t worked out, and at 30, it was time to meet ‘the one’.
Maybe the universe can help! I decided.
Throwing my hands up skyward, I said, ‘Next!’
In my gut, I knew the right guy for me was just around the corner.
After travelling for a year overseas, I was back home in Fremantle, WA, where I’d bought a house.
A teacher, I was working at the local primary school.
‘Do you need a fridge for that house, Annette?’ my principal Rod asked a few days later.
‘Yeah, I do actually,’ I said.
‘My brother lent me one and it leaks!’
Luckily, Rod’s son Andrew was recently home from overseas too. A fridge mechanic, he was selling whitegoods out of his parents’ garage.
I had no idea what to look for in a fridge, so I asked my dad Kieran to meet me at their house that afternoon.
When I arrived at 5pm, Dad was already there chatting with my boss and his son.
The moment I laid eyes on Andrew, BANG!. I was hit with a bolt of lightning I’d never felt before.
I’m going to have that man’s babies! I knew instantly.
Before now, I’d never even wanted kids!
I definitely didn’t believe in love at first sight. But standing four metres away from this stranger, I just knew.
It didn’t hurt that he was easy on the eyes!
After the introductions were made, Andrew took me into the garage.
‘Most guys my age renovate old cars – I renovate old fridges,’ he quipped, showing me a vintage beauty he’d painted racing car green.
Taking me over to see my second-hand fridge, he cut me a deal.
‘I’ll knock 20 bucks off,’ he told me.
There was only one problem. The next day, Andrew was off on a two-week fishing trip, so he couldn’t deliver it, but his brother Jeremy could.
Leaving to head home, I felt like I was floating!
How am I going to see him again? I wondered, smitten.
So I called my friend Tony.
‘I’ve just met someone,’ I confided. ‘How am I going to see him again?’
Tony had an idea.
‘When you get the fridge, turn all the settings down and tell him it’s broken!’ he suggested, cheekily.
‘I can’t!’ I exclaimed.
But, three days later, my fridge broke down all on its own!
Over the next fortnight, Andrew’s brother came back five times to try and fix it without any luck.
Then, when Andrew got back from his fishing trip, he came around to take a look.
The spark was definitely still there. And he had the magic touch – he repaired the fridge straight away!
When he found out I was about to fork out $400 for a stove, he wouldn’t have it.
‘I’ve got one for you for $70,’ he said.
He’s selling me whitegoods left right and centre, I thought.
‘Let me take you out for a meal to say thanks,’ I said.
For the date after that, Andrew cooked me a seafood feast. We shared our first kiss – and that was that!
‘I’m so happy you sold me that fridge and it broke down,’ I told Andrew on a camping trip once we’d been together for a little while.
‘I left a part off it so it’d break down,’ he confessed.
He’d orchestrated the entire saga so I’d have to contact him again!
Bursting into laughter, I was so glad he did.
Now, 28 years on, we have two beautiful daughters, Kate, 21, and Georgia, 18.
And while we’ve upgraded our fridge, we still use the old girl as a spare in the garage.
The fan squeaks like a seagull’s trapped inside, but we can’t bear to part with it!
‘It’s the longest warranty I’ve ever had!’ Andrew laughs.
A faulty fridge brought us together. But nothing’s breaking us apart! ●
Annette’s app ‘Take Two’ helps couples better their relationships. On iTunes or go to: taketwoapp.com.au