Paperback romance

He was looking for a book. She was trying to sell it. Thanks to [Saw You, they’re now happily married.

Words: Anna Claybourne Picture: Tim Fisher

COME ON, ADMIT IT. HAVE YOU EVER done it‘.’ vaeated over a hot classifieds fortn. trying to find the right combination of flattering. vvitty and non-crazed sounding vvords to announce to the person of your dreams that you‘ve spotted them serving cappuccino in Borders or strolling glamoroust across the Meadovvs'.’ ()r more likely furtively scanned the l Savv You page. vvondering if it‘s your ovvn gorgeous self that‘s inspired someone else to bare their soul'.’ And anyvvay. could it ever vvork'.’

Well it‘s happened. Yes. The List tally gets to play C‘illa and sdrop on the tale of a genuine 1 romance. James Barbour. )litics student at Edinburgh ity. and sax player vvith yh l‘unk band the L'gly (iroove ent. vvas the one to put his n his sleeve after seeing (‘arrie e vvorking on the academic books counter. upstairs in James Thin‘s on South Bridge (a classic I Savv You venue if there ever vvas one). Today. they‘re not only still together. they‘re married with a baby daughter. The List caught tip with them to get the story. Marie-Claire style. from both partners.

James ‘lt vvas a Friday night in February 1996. and me and my flatmates ended tip at Thin‘s because I vvas having an essay crisis and needed more books. The vvoman on the till vvas attractive and friendly. vve talked about the books l was buying and she said she was studying economics. We nattered for a while. but everyone vvas waiting for me. so I finished the conversation: and. weirdly. as soon as I got back to my mates I said “I‘ve fallen in love“. ‘They tried to get me to go back and ask her out. but there vvas no vvay I had the guts to do that. so back at the flat they came up with the idea of an I Savv You message. vvhich vve prepared that night. I thought it would be a laugh and I told myself I had nothing to lose . . . but vvhen I actually savv it in print it Was still a shock. That‘s when I realised I had actually done it and that it tnight work. I kind of forgot

98 THE UST 22 J...’= 6 Jr... 2000

then a

Sax player James Barbour and former bookseller Carrie Leslie tie the knot

'It could definately only be me'

\ ‘3 ' 5"

about it. but at the same time I really vvanted something to come of it. When that happens. you‘ve got to do something.‘

Carrie ‘I didn‘t see James‘s message in The List; in fact I‘d never even heard of l Savv You at the time. The first I knevv about it was when I arrived at vvork one night and everyone was giggling and going “look in the tea room“. I went in and they‘d photocopied the ad and blovvn it up. It vvas very specific: it was for someone tall. vvith long brown hair. studying economics. vvho vvorked on a Friday: so it could definitely only be tne.

‘When I first savv the ad I had no recollection of meeting James. and I immediately thought “Oh my god. I‘ve got a stalker“. People are alvvays chatting you tip when you vvork evenings in a bookshop (I can recommend it if you‘re looking l‘or a bloke). In fact. tvvo other men had asked me out that night. so I thought it vvas one of them. My manager an vvas vvorried and told me no to pt ue it. But most of my friend. oug i was reain romantic at )ers to send in my e-mail LIL

‘I got a reply tl




we exchanged e-mails. but we kept putting each other off and saying we vvere too busy to meet (obviously we were really embarrassed: so mttch so that I still haven‘t told my mum hovv I met Jamesl). But in the end we decided to have lunch. We met up outside Potterrovv and got on so vvell. we spent eight hours together: including. bizarrely. going to see Greyfriars Bobby. It was an amazing day: though things only really got going after James had been home for Iiaster. We moved in together less than a year later.‘

000”. I LOVE IT when they get on. James and Carrie had their first baby. Anna Caitlin. in July 1998. and got married in September WW). vvith an exceedingly posh do at vvhich James rejoined the L‘glies for a drunken rendition of ‘Jungle Boogie‘. Novv working for the Foreign Office. he‘s about to be posted to South Africa. and the whole flatnin are leaving for Cape Tovvn in September. So it can happen. And that means —- as ong 's you get the right job in the iin “hop. are sufficiently )ve ‘. and don‘t neglect to ain ings magazine on a s‘ In it could happen

oo bra

II’.': .‘ISHI R