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Chris and I met in a pub, which sounds dreadfully unimaginative. Does it then help to mention that he was working behind the bar and I was a Morris man? Frankly, my dears, I don't give a damn. Living well is the best revenge, and we've been together for 16 happy years.

Who we are

We are Niels Grundtvig Nielsen (first-person narrator of these pages) and Chris Hall. I was born in Wiltshire towards the end of 1955, Chris in Yorkshire in the summer of 1964; which goes some way to explain why we celebrate our anniversary-equivalent on the nearest Saturday to St. Valentine's day – spread the celebrations evenly through the year. What it doesn't explain is why this day is known as Pig Saturday, with the associated tradition of having a good piece of pork for supper. We met in Sheffield, survived two years apart while I was improving my cv by working for IBM in La Gaude (Provence) and Chris was learning French and Dutch, and spent six weeks together in the south of France before heading north by combo.

What we do at work

I'm a software technical author and duty phrase-maker at a local IT company, Chris is a Web designer and HTML author. Years ago I sat a series of tests designed to identify my career profile, which ended up suggesting I should be a freelance journalist. Technical writing seems pretty close, though abandoning the uncertainties and eternal paperwork of self-employment has to be one of the best things I've ever done, and on a good day or in a good project it offers the satisfying challenge of acting as a bridge and interpreter between developers and users. Editing, which I do occasionally, is less enjoyable except when there's time to sit down and discuss editorial comments with the writer; to explain why I have made the suggestions I have made. It does sometimes afford a special pleasure, though, when the victim looks up in amazement and says "but that's exactly what I meant to say!"

What we do elsewhere

We listen to music from Machaut to XTC and make music; generally speaking, Renaissance for Chris, Baroque for me and Rococo for our duets. We watch films, both old favourites that show up on television and new ones once they reach Belgium. You'll find individual cards for some of our favourites under their titles, eventually. We read avidly, chiefly mediæval and renaissance history or 19th and 20th century fiction though thought-provoking scientific books – Longitude, the Universe and the Teacup or the Nothing that is, for instance – have been passed enthusiastically from hand to hand. We have friends round for meals, and take it in turn to cook. We make lists of all the fascinating exhibitions going on here, and get to about a third of the ones we have made a note of.

What we don't do

Generally well-suited, we think.