Thursday April 24 2014

14 years and the Blicks just won’t stop riding on love

Arthur and Noella Blick at their motor garage.

Arthur and Noella Blick at their motor garage. Right: A cutout of the couple when they rallied together and top right, with their youngest son. The couple says for people to be happy in a relationship, there should be willingness to compromise. PHOTO BY RACHEL MABALA 

How did the two of you meet?
We met at Kampala Pentecostal Church (KPC) about 14 years ago. We both used to go to KPC.

What was your pick up line?
Arthur: I told her that I was going to a party but in reality, there was no party.
Noella: When he asked me to join him for a party I told him, “maybe next time”. He used to be very shy back then, especially when he first approached me but we met again sometime after that.

How long have you been married?
Arthur: We will be making 11 years in June. We got married in June 2003.

What was your impression about each other when you met?
Arthur: I saw this beautiful lady and I thought: “What a fine looking lady!” This to me was a plus. When I talked to her, she was so down-to-earth and that made everything a complete package.
Noella: His calmness and good looks drew me to him.

Arthur, what did your parents think about Noella when they met her?
Both my parents and siblings liked Noella and that encouraged us to take our relationship to the next level.

Noella, what qualities does Arthur possess that are important to you?
He is a good-looking man, very patient, respectful and a hands-on father.

Were you drawn to him by the Blick name?
At first he didn’t tell me his second name. He revealed to me after eight months when he invited me to one of his races. I was a bit scared after finding out who he was since it came with attention, yet I am a very private person.

What are some of the adjustments you both made from being single to married?
Arthur: Personally, I believe a good marriage comes with sacrifices. I got married when I was only 27 years old and many people kept asking me if I was sure about it, but I proved to them that I was ready. Before we got married, we used to party from Thursday to Monday, but after our marriage, everything changed due to the responsibilities. We reduced on the partying and I don’t have any regrets on making that move.

Noella: I met Arthur when I was 19 and I have not seen any big adjustment because I have been with only him since we met. We are both open-minded so when he does something or I do, we both let each other know about it.

How financially ready were you for marriage and children?
Arthur: I plan but I do not plan 100 per cent. There are so many people who plan so much and they end up waiting forever. For my case, I had made up my mind that I wanted to get married, but I had not built a house or bought a car and if we had set all those ultimatums, I don’t think we would have been together today. However, it is important to have a source of income because once the children come into the picture, everything changes, including the cost of living.

Noella: Unlike today, life was not as expensive. For us who got married earlier, the cost of living was much cheaper and we kept our wedding as simple as possible. We have been to many weddings where couples invite so many guests who at the end leave the reception grumbling and dissatisfied with how they were served.

What is the hardest thing you have had to deal with in your marriage and how did you deal with it?
Arthur: We sometimes have the usual fights and most of the time it’s because of time keeping. I am a very time conscious person yet my wife is not.

Noella: Before we got married, Arthur was not very affectionate yet I am an avid person. It was a challenge to me at the beginning but he adjusted a bit and I am now okay with him.

What effect did having children, especially the first child, have on your marriage?
Arthur: When our first child was born, I was sleep-deprived for quite some time because we got our second child soon after him. They would wake up at night, one after the other, and due to that, I developed insomnia, which affected my performance as a Motocross rider. But couples should not be scared of getting children since they are a blessing. That stage of waking up three times a night is something that only lasts for a short while.

Noella: We have three children. Before the birth of our children, we used to have dates every Friday, but now everything has changed because our children need much of our time. But we still go on those dates and movies once every month to keep our relationship alive. Maybe we shall have more time in future when they grow older, since they will be independent.

Has religion played a role in your marriage and raising your children?
Arthur: I have seen many marriages break because couples only hold church weddings for formality and thereafter forget about Christ. We both come from Christian families so we have always raised our children in that direction.
We go to church as much as possible. However, sometimes I fail to attend church service due to my Motocross events. But in such a case, I always pin stickers of the Lord Jesus at those events and on my car to spread His word.

Do you share chores?
Arthur: Sometimes, but Noella does most of it. We used to have an issue with that but I have adjusted and I repair things like electronics, sinks, broken cupboards, fix mosquito nets and baby-sit. I also love to cook.
I remember when we were still in the United Kingdom, I cooked for Noella and when she came home, she insisted that I had bought that food. One of my children also likes the English pancake and I used to make it for him every day before I became busy with Motocross.

Noella, do you ever fear for Arthur’s life because of the motor cross?
I support him but I also fear for his life. He is so passionate about it and one time he raced with me but unfortunately, the car rolled over, and the people around helped us put the car upright and he continued with the race. I enjoyed the thrill but it was very scary.

What is the most special memory that you hold since you got married?
Arthur: The birth of our three children was very special to me. There are many women who have lost their babies thus all my children are a blessing and that is the moment that I treasure most.

Noella: When we got married, it was a great expression. I will never forget that day.

How do you feel about your spouse now compared to when you first got together?
Noella: At the beginning, I think it was based on attraction, but now I am so used to him and I love him more. Sometimes people comment about his hair but I always tell him that I don’t see those changes. I see the Arthur that I met 14 years ago.

Arthur: I still look at Noella the same way as when I met her 14 years ago. She might have put on some weight, but I don’t see anything wrong with that because she is now part of me.

What advice would you give young people about finding a mate?
Noella: We might be different but we need to be compatible before anything else. Like in our case, we didn’t have the same views.
He is into Motocross and I am not but I had to compromise with him and I always support him by either officiating at the rallies or cheering him on.

Arthur: They should know that life is what you make it. Besides, they should always put God first in anything they do, including their relationships so that God may guide them before making any wrong decision.

Arthur, are you always faced with any pressure to impress?
I am a down-to-earth person. Most of the time whenever I go to events, I always wear my cap to hide my face so that people don’t interrupt my privacy. Sometimes whenever I take my wife for a date, people end up joining our table to either buy us drinks or something else, which I find absurd.

Noella, what does it feel like being married into a popular family?
It has its good and bad sides. The good side is that you always get things done in your favour and the bad side is that once you marry a celebrity, your private life is not only for two people but for the whole community.

What are your feelings on couples living together before marriage? Was it allowed with you?
Arthur: After proposing to Noella, we decided to move in together and we lived as a couple for about eight months before we got married.
However, I would not recommend for other couples because religiously, it is not right. It is also important to get to know the person better so that one does not regret in future.

Noella: I would recommend it if the relationship is going somewhere, especially for women. I took that decision after we got engaged since that was a positive sign for our relationship.

The Blicks’ secret to happiness
Communication is very important in any relationship. Couples should communicate frequently whenever they have an issue rather than keeping it at heart

Disciplining children.
We don’t believe in the old fashioned way of disciplining children, for example, slapping or hitting them. We either confiscate their favourite video game or lock their favourite TV programme and they always change.

Dealing with conflict.
We always communicate as much as possible, although sometimes Noella prefers to sleep with the problem and talk about it another day when she has calmed down.

Keeping romance alive.
We still have dates and movie nights once every month. Most of the time we are always busy with work during weekdays and we rarely get time to bond, so dates are the best way to keep the relationship fresh.