First Date #34 – How it started

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First Date #34 was with an Irish woman living in Dublin. We matched on Bumble. Despite the fact that we matched on Friday the 13th and a Full Moon, I felt that she was gonna be the lucky one for me. She was arty and techy and a bit nerdy too. She was working on an escape room when we matched, and that sounded fascinating to me. We both had dogs, played Dungeons and Dragons and enjoyed foods from other cultures. Because of that last bit, we planned our first date at a Japanese restaurant in Dublin.

I took the bus up to Dublin and got to the restaurant a little early. As it was starting to rain, I texted her that I was going to wait inside. She messaged that she was on her way, but after studying the menu and scrolling through my social media feeds, there was still no sign of her. There was a time that I would have been fuming if I had to wait twenty minutes for somebody, but I was trying to be more calm and understanding. There were many reasons she could be running late – busy with work, traffic/parking in Dublin, issues with her special-needs child, or she was just being “Irish”. I’ve found that some Irish people think that 5-10 minutes late is on time. So, I was patient. Finally, a lovely woman walked in and smiled at me, and I no longer cared about the time that had passed. I only cared about how much time we could spend together. After lunch, I walked her back to her car and gave her a hug. I considered kissing her, but I didn’t want to be presumptuous. Β When we talked later, she said I totally should have been presumptuous.

The following week, we went to see The Joker at Cineworld on Parnell Street. I booked a single bed AirBnB room nearby as the showing was late, and even though I could have taken the late bus, I was hoping to extend the date as long as possible. 🀞 Once again, she was late, and I knew that this was just how things were going to be with FirstDate34. We enjoyed the movie and then walked across town back towards Trinity College which was nowhere close to where I was staying. No problem, I don’t mind walking. We went into The Bank on College Green – a bank transformed into a bar and restaurant. We ordered drinks, she slid into a seat at a booth, I slid in next to her, put my arms around her, and gave her a kiss. I can’t say it was my smoothest move or an exceptional kiss, but there was definitely chemistry there. After a lovely evening together, she took a taxi back to her place and I walked back to my room at 2 in the morning. Whether it’s John’s Street in Kilkenny or Temple Bar in Dublin, I have not felt unsafe while walking late at night in Ireland. That is definitely a welcomed change.

We weren’t able to arrange a date again for a few weeks as she was busy with work, and then each of us went on short trips (she went to visit her sister in London, and I went to Spiel in Essen, Germany). Though we weren’t about to see each other, we kept in contact with WhatsApp. How did budding romances survive before technology? Did people actually keep the flame alive by writing letters to each other?!? It’s hard to believe that people could be that patient. But I was trying my best to be more easy-going too. The pace of life in Ireland was much slower than what I was used to in California. So, my quest for love meant I was going to have to be tolerant, understanding and tenacious. After all, there had already been 33 prior First Dates. I would really like to think that this was my last first date.

(First Date – 4 October, 2019)