It’s happened! After 18 years I’ve gone on my first first date with someone who wasn’t my wife, and it wasn’t as scary as I thought. I’ll call her Emily (which isn’t her real name) and start with a summary of it all:
- She was talkative
- She was very friendly
- She only has one kid (which means we’d all fit in my car)
- Primary school teacher
- Relatively local – about 25 minutes from my house
- She hasn’t really done much other than live, work and raise her son
- She hasn’t travelled at all and doesn’t have ambitions to
- Her social life involves only her family; where are her friends?!
- Not physically an upgrade on my ex
- No spark at all
Overall then, a disappointing outcome but an important first step for me!
It was my first try. We matched on Tinder when I accidentally super-liked her; I’d been using Bumble, which lets you swipe up to see more photos while Tinder uses that movement for super-liking someone. Lesson learned! She had a decent enough profile though, so I didn’t fret when she contacted me. We chatted for a little bit before I suggested we move it to Whatsapp, and within a day or so we’d set a date for the following week.
We messaged a few more times that week, flirtatious but light, and it felt good. So when it came to meeting her for late lunch I was hopeful. I was running a few minutes late thanks to a meeting overrun, so gave her a call; I never thought I could make a strong impression of someone romantically within a few seconds of hearing their voice, but it turns out I can.
Her voice was not, well melodic. So when I laid eyes on her for the first time I didn’t have high expectations. My expectations we met. It’s not that she was massively overweight, or was really ugly (she was neither of those things for the record), but she just wasn’t what I’m discovering is my type. I’d not seen a full-length body photo of her in advance; another lesson learned.
We went to a little hidden cafe that she knew and started chatting. It very quickly became clear that she was very much a local girl. She rarely left the local area, worked at the same school as her mum and didn’t really have any hobbies to note other than sewing. Nothing wrong with that for her, but it meant it was difficult to pay attention to the discussion when there was nothing to excite or interest me.
And it was very much about paying attention, as there was precious little opportunity for me to talk! I used open question techniques to keep the discussion flowing, but normally discussion involves a little give and take. As it was I had to verbally butt in every now and then to share something myself!
We did get onto the subject of how we’d both come to be single parents, which was okay but all a bit too much for a first date. Not the subject matter per se, but the depth of the discussion. I don’t really want to talk about all that too much, so will avoid it in future. It also showed up that I don’t yet have a 30-second version of my tale of woe. I need to find a way of phrasing it all so it seems like less of a big deal. Work for me to do.
We had some cake and a couple of lemonades (which I paid for) before leaving. She had invited me for another drink at the local pub her aunt ran, but I had arranged to meet some friends that evening so politely declined and made my way off. Honestly, that wasn’t me blowing her out!
I ended up messaging her the next day to effectively say it was nice to meet her but I was looking for someone to spark some adventures for me and she wasn’t the one to do that. Thankfully she agreed; looks like I may have found a good way to phrase that.
Overall, a useful way to get going. Safe, pleasant but with a total lack of chemistry. Now that awkward first one is out of the way I can get on with the next. I’m already looking forward to it…