"She saw the ad and then she left a message," said Paul. "She left a poem. I was very impressed and I thought it was funny, and that this was someone I'd like to meet."
According to Susan, what reeled her in was the fact that Paul could cook.
" 'Grown children' yes! 'Intelligent' and I'm sure he is good looking," she wrote on the back of their wedding program in an ode to the personal ad that brought them together. " 'Sensitive' and 'funny.' But what got me was COOKING!!"
The two met up at the Coach House diner in North Bergen. They had coffee and walked the streets of Jersey and Union City for hours. They set up a date for the following week.
They've been together ever since.
"The night before I saw Susan, I had another date and I wasn't impressed," Paul said. "There were eight more responses that I got, and I never responded to the others."
They dated for 15 months before getting married in August of 1998.
"We are together constantly," said Paul. "There isn't a weekend that we've been apart since we first met. We are best friends."
Paul and Susan are planning a quiet evening at home for Valentines Day.
"As we do on most holidays, we spend it at home," said Paul. "I'll cook her a nice meal, probably roast leg of lamb, covered in honey for my honey."
Paul had commented shortly after they got married that besides both of them being right for each other, the timing was right. "Probably, had we met 20 years ago, we wouldn't have gotten together," he said. "We probably had to get divorced and go through everything we had to go through before we met, but when we met, we knew it right away."
After they met through the Reporter, they used the paper for other purposes. Paul sold his car, Susan sold her house in North Bergen, and the couple bought a condo in Brunswick Towers in Jersey City, all through the paper. Three months ago, Paul took a job selling advertising for the paper.
"It just happened one after another," he said. "Every time we wanted something, we just went to the Reporter." What's in store next for the couple?
"Too bad they don't have Florida properties in the Reporter, because that's what we'll purchase when we retire," said Paul.