It was written in the stars, and the roster
HEADLINE-GRABBING office affairs that go wrong tend to overshadow the far more numerous flares of workplace attraction that ultimately lead to love, marriage and babies.
Five-month-old Ruby Franklin, for instance, owes her existence to her parents’ over-thephone friendship that blossomed into something more while they were both working for the same national recruitment firm.
Though Alex worked in business support services in the company’s Sydney office and Di was a consultant in the Melbourne office, the nature of their roles meant they spoke on the phone every other day— and that, coincidentally, they were both planning trips to Spain at around the same time.
But it was when Alex flew to Melbourne to conduct a training session for Di’s team that sparks really flew.
Throughout the whole relationship, there were a number of weird signs that this was the man I was going to marry,’’ Di explains.
For example, I had no idea what Alex looked like physically, but I got up on the morning of that training session and thought twice about what I was wearing because something told me something special was going to happen today.’’
Alex admits he’d also been intrigued by their phone chats and had made some discreet inquiries about Di— only to have his hopes dashed when he saw colorful children’s artworks adorning her desk.
I’d been given the heads-up as to her marital status, so when I saw the pictures, I did think twice, until I found out they were drawn by her nephew,’’ he says.
Though they were living 1000km apart, the relationship developed slowly — and in great secrecy. I wanted to keep it under wraps until I was sure I knew where the relationship was going, because you don’t want everyone at work knowing your business,’’ Di explains.
This led to some slightly awkward situations, because there were always people in the office saying, Alex would be a great catch’. I had to bite my tongue, because I wanted to say, Yes, actually he is’.’’
After spending time travelling together in Spain, the couple returned to Australia.
Shortly after, Di transferred to the Sydney office and moved in with Alex— to the congratulations rather than condemnation from their workmates. We were long-term employees and they had a lot of confidence in our ability to do the work, rather than get caught up in the romance of it all,’’ says Alex.
Now based in Melbourne, in order to be closer to Di’s family following Ruby’s arrival, the couple say they feel extremely lucky’’ about how much their relationship has grown and changed since they first locked eyes across a crowded office nearly five years ago.
At first, when we were still working together, the emails started off all lovey-dovey," says Di. We still email each other all the time, but now it’s about things like, Have you paid this bill?’ and Can you pick up some nappies on the way home from work?’