I got a few interesting responses on fun ways to spend Valentine’s Day with or without a lover.
“I think people take Valentine’s Day too hard – it doesn’t have to be all about romantic love or whether you are in a couple. It is a day to celebrate the love all around you – your friends, your kids, your parents. That said, I am excited for V-Day this year since I got tickets to this geeky but hopefully fun night at the Natural History Museum.” — 40-something, NYC
Romance Under the Stars
Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a unique New York City experience. Cocktail hour complete with hors d’oeuvres, champagne, and chocolate-covered strawberries to the music of the Josh Rutner Quartet followed by a narrated tour of the night sky in the Hayden Planetarium .
Check out your local museums for Valentine’s Day events. Many have events that are vaguely themed toward the “science” or “history” of love and provide a fun alternative. In London, scientists at the Natural History Museum will host a Night Safari through the museums back rooms, titled Pleasure or Pain — Love in the Natural World. In Washington DC, the International Spy Museum offers a “Love a Spy” package complete with dinner, cocktails and stories of how Mata Hari and other spies used seduction as a tool to attract, manipulate and compromise their targets.
“The beauty of being 40ish is that you have been thru all possible valentine day scenarios:
o The girls only night out on the town (avoid the “couple” venues!)
o The stay at home & watch a movie while thinking how you yourself would like to have a valentine (not recommended)
o The Valentines date that found you crammed into one of Zagat’s “top 5 romantic spots” only to find it a bit contrived (not worth it)
After all those, my favorite V-Day w/ a significant other was a sweet romantic dinner at home…sexy & relaxing.
My favorite v day with the girls was a steam spa night with a single flower bought for myself at the corner bodega as a reminder…..love always finds you when you are content and relaxed.” –– 40-something, New Jersey
Dinner at home is always a relaxing alternative to the fight for reservations. All sorts of fun can be had cooking together and plenty of options for dessert.
“Flowers, chocolates, etc are nice for girls, but whatever. Guys certainly don’t want that – guys want sex!!! Buy a nice bottle of champagne (or Prosecco if you are shy of cash), skip going out to dinner, have 2 glasses of champagne and “retire for the evening”. – 40-something, Brooklyn, NY
If you don’t cook and you don’t have a reservations consider ordering in from afar:
“Do you have a favorite restaurant? Have you taken a special trip together? Most restaurants will now happily pack-up their specialty and Fed Ex it right to your door? Why not bring back those memories without booking a flight. Have your favorite dish delivered…serve it on one plate with two forks and share your favorite memories while sharing a meal.” – 40-something, Stamford, CT
A relaxed, sexy meal is great but another way to relax is to pamper yourself. Love the idea of a spa night. Lots of spas have special deals on Valentine’s Day for a girls night out or book a couples massage.
Empower yourself by taking any number of classes from pole-dancing to the martial arts that are all about self-empowerment. The World Martial Arts Center in NYC offers a Valentine’s Day package. As described in the NY Times:
“For a scant $45, you get a karate suit, a DVD and a full month of unlimited classes. With effort, even Cupid’s most wounded will learn to punch and kick their way to emotional autonomy. If you really want to be a pal, you can sign up and go with.”
Check out what your local gyms, martial arts centers are offering or make up your own package.
Then there is also the other type of loving oneself.
“Shopping in toys in babeland for a new vibrator. If you can’t be with a loving partner then have a great time by yourself.” – 40-something, NYC
If that kind of shopping isn’t your thing, the NY Times also suggested shopping for these fun white boots that are an “elegant update of the white go-go boots Nancy Sinatra wore on the album cover of “These Boots Were Made for Walking” …and get ready to “walk all over him”.
At Sigerson Morrison. And on sale:)
Finally, one of the best ways to feel love is to give love. Visit a hospital or chronic care home to pass out small Valentine surprises to the residents. They will enjoy the care and attention from something so unexpected.