No festival divides opinion quite like Valentine’s Day.
Sure, people complain about Christmas – the shopping, the weight-gain, Cliff Richard – but only a true Scrooge would say that we’d be better off without it.
By contrast, Valentine’s Day attracts a wide range of opinions. Some love the intrigue and excitement of possibly receiving a card from a secret admirer. (We’ll forget about the feelings inspired when an expected card fails to arrive.) Others feel that it’s all horribly commercial, designed to guilt-trip people into making expensive and empty romantic gestures. Some protest that it discriminates against single people – although most singles seem happy enough either to ignore it or to fight back with anti-Valentine’s events.
Perhaps the best argument in favour of Valentine’s Day is that it nudges us to tell the people we love how much they mean to us. But why do that on just one day? And, for that matter, why restrict it to romantic love? There are lots of things we can do to take care of those close to us.
At Pagan Osborne, we like to think of what we do as ‘The Paperwork of Love’, because everything we cover comes down to looking after the things that are important - whether that’s our loved ones, our homes and belongings or our business. And what’s a more powerful way of showing your love than protecting those you care about?
Take a Will, for example. Around 70% of people in Scotland die without one, potentially leaving their loved ones with the painful task of sorting out their affairs. This can lead to difficult, upsetting and often costly situations as if someone dies intestate (without a Will) who gets what can be left to default. So ultimately a Will protects those closest to you from any further suffering at an already distressing time.
A Power of Attorney is another perfect example. These provide a safety net if for whatever reason you are unable to make decisions for yourself or are unavailable for a long period of time – for example if you become unwell or are suddenly hospitalised. With a Power of Attorney in place, someone you trust can take care of important documents and decisions to ensure everything is done as you would want it. Whether through illness or absence, having someone you trust looking after your affairs can give you peace of mind that your affairs are in the best possible hands.
On the other hand… we can take care of the paperwork, but we can’t make it romantic. So the florists probably shouldn’t be too worried! After the champagne is all finished and the last of the chocolates has disappeared though, remember that it’s probably time to give a thought to the paperwork of love.
The greatest romantic gestures of all time
The Taj Mahal was built by the emperor Shah Jahan as a memorial to his third wife. He now lies alongside her in the Taj’s white marble tomb.
Marilyn Monroe’s former husband Joe DiMaggio was so heartbroken by her death that he arranged for roses to be sent to her grave every week for over 20 years.
Edward VIII became King of the UK in January 1936. He abdicated eleven months later so that he could marry Wallis Simpson, a divorcée. They spent the rest of their lives together.