Three years ago, at about this time of night, I was eating dinner in the Banana Leaf restaurant in Clapham Junction. I'd been awake for more than 36 hours, and it's fair to say that I was a little delirious, but it wasn't just from lack of sleep.
22 hours earlier, on the platform at Poplar DLR station, I met someone, and that meeting would change my life.
When I left my house on Saturday morning (the 4th of November) I did so smelling slightly of hair-dye and with no idea what was ahead of me. I knew I was going to a blogmeet in the centre of London and afterwards, I was heading to Poplar to meet up with a friend, to celebrate her birthday. She was spending the day at Earl's Court, at the Top Gear exhibition and show, and the only reason I wasn't there with her was that I wanted to catch up with various friends who would be at the blogmeet.
I took my knitting with me, as I (pretty much) always do, along with a change of clothes for the evening ahead and set off into town.
The blogmeet was great fun, and despite being a little crowded and overwhelming, I was quite energised as I squeezed through the crowds and headed out the door of the pub towards the tube station.
I called my friend to let her know I was on my way and we agreed to meet at Poplar DLR because I didn't know the way to her house. In the event, they were later than expected, because of overcrowding and generalised weekend tube carnage, and so when they turned up, I had parked myself on a bench and was knitting away quite happily (I was knitting a pair of wristwarmers. I still have them).
I looked as the crowd spilled out of the crowded carriage, and once it had cleared a little stood up to find my friend. I spotted (and greeted) her first, followed by her boyfriend (who I'd met previously) and then my attention was caught by a third person.
Something lit up in my brain in that first look and a few seconds later I was introduced to her friend and the "Oh, Hello…!" in my head was far more Grace Brothers than the greeting I verbalised.
A little flustered, I put away my knitting and we ambled back to her house where a few more people were due to arrive, to partake of pizza before a night out on the town.
The conversation flowed, the pizza was good and the night out lasted longer than I expected, and so I accepted an invitation to stay over, rather than have to make my way back to the wilds of North London alone.
Back in Poplar, the four of us: me, my friend, her friend and her boyfriend talked, laughed, reminisced, ate cold leftover pizza and slowly wound down from a great evening out, and eventually, she and her boyfriend made their way upstairs to bed (after lending me a t-shirt and some shorts to sleep in) leaving her friend and I alone downstairs.
I knew by this point that I was attracted to him, but didn't think he was interested in me so I'd pretty much written off the idea of anything happening between us and was just enjoying the conversation. As it goes, I was wrong and I will never forget our first kiss.
We didn't sleep at all that night.
We talked, and kissed, and talked a lot more, and at some point in the wee small hours of the morning, I took an enormous leap of faith and told him some deeply personal stuff. The sort of stuff you wouldn't normally tell someone you met less than 12 hours previously, but it felt important and it felt right.
I don't think I've ever been as scared in my entire life, nor as elated when he didn't run screaming, and in that moment, the course of my life changed in ways I couldn't begin to imagine or appreciate.
We spent the day together, not really wanting that first flush of togetherness to end, even though we'd already made plans to meet up again the next night.
When I eventually got back home to north London I was exhausted and delirious, overwhelmingly happy and at the same time, feeling like a part of me was now missing. I knew then that I'd met the person that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.
I was desperate to tell my flatmate, but when my flatmate opened his door as he heard me come up the stairs and told me that my shower had leaked and dye-filled water and showed me the red streaks down his wall I collapsed on the stairs leading up to my room and cried my eyes out for a full ten minutes as he looked on in confusion and that mixture of panic and discomfort that men get when they're around a crying woman and don't know what to do. It wasn't that it was a disaster, but I was just so emotionally jangled that it was too much and I couldn't cope with it.
I had no idea then that I'd be where I am now.
It hasn't been easy. We've had our ups and downs like any couple, but even though he's currently lying in bed having contracted Swine Flu and we're not out celebrating like we planned, it doesn't matter.
All that matters is that I love this man with every fibre of my being, and he loves me too, and there is nothing better in all the world than that.
Three years is just the beginning, and now I have something that's really worth remembering on the 5th of November.