Eastbourne couple win Valentine gift of a lifetime

Erik and Paula Cornelisse
Erik and Paula Cornelisse

AN OLD Town couple got the Valentine’s Day gift of a lifetime this week when they won a trip to New York with tickets to Ghost the Musical on Broadway.

Paula and Erik Cornelisse have been married for nearly 20 years and with the milestone wedding anniversary coming up in October, romantic Erik was trying to find the perfect treat for his lady.

Erik is due to lose his job as a Christian school worker in August and he was concerned he would be unable to afford a gift for Paula and started looking on the internet.

He said, “I found Ghost the Musical in London and I thought a pair of tickets to that would be perfect as that was the first film we saw together at the cinema.”

But when Erik looked further he saw there was competition running to win tickets to the same show in New York with a two-night stay and flights included.

The competition required Erik to write a poem about his and Paula’s love plus a video of the two of them.

Erik, who is Dutch and had written many poems when he was living in Holland, decided to put pen to paper and write his first ever poem in English.

Erik entered the competition without telling his wife and their two children Christina, 15 and Thomas, 12, but when his poem and video was shortlisted he explained what he had done.

He said, “I told the children first and then I put the computer on the dinner table and showed her what I had done.

“She was flabbergasted and thought I was having her on but the children said I wasn’t.

“Then I just started going crazy and getting everyone to vote for us. Next thing we knew we had won it with 35 per cent of the vote.”

Paula and Erik plan to jet off for their romantic treat in June.

To see their poem and video visit www.ghostthemusical.com/competition/erik-and-paula.