First Date #49 – How it started

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First Date #49 was with an Irish woman living in Dublin. We matched on Bumble. Several things about her profile and our first chats that stood out to me.

  1. She knew the Irish language, and she was interested in learning more.
  2. She was interested in Irish history.
  3. She had visited California and didn’t hate it.

So many Irish people do not care about the Irish language. They learn it in school, and after leaving certs, they forget anything to do with it. I am fascinated with the language. I’ve tried to learn it, but it is impossible to do with just Duolingo. You need to have somebody to speak with, so I liked this about her.

History was my major at UCLA. I loved it then, and I still love learning new history. This island is filled with stories, and it would be great to explore these stories with somebody who is also interested.

I have met a lot of Irish people that have visited the US. Most visit the east coast, and they seem to like it. Of the ones that visit California, most hate it. I’d say the reason for this is many. But one major complaint is that California, and Los Angeles especially, is so big and spread out, it’s just overwhelming. The cramped spaces of New York and Boston seem more like Dublin to them. Southern California (146,350 km2), is more than twice as large as the Republic of Ireland (70,273 km2). So, to find an Irish woman that liked California is rare.

So, I was obviously eager to meet. She told me that she was taking care of her elderly father because it was hard to find home care during COVID, so I would have to work around her schedule – no problem! We agreed to meet in St. Anne’s Park in Clontarf, Dublin. It is a fabulous park with huge fields and markets on the weekend. Unashamedly, the date she chose to meet just happened to be the day I was returning from Balbriggan with FirstDate46. So, after I dropped 46 off, I parked at the park to meet 48.

Maybe I was feeling woozy from the weird weekend with 46, but when FirstDate48 rode up on a bike, I was instantly smitten. She was as beautiful in person as she was in her pictures. She locked her bike at the rack, and we took a long and leisurely stroll around the park. This was the first date in a while without beverages, maybe that’s what I was doing wrong! We talked about language, history and California. We talked about pets, my Brownie and Linc, and her desire to have a farm with goats, donkeys and pigs. We talked about politics and it was clear she was very liberal. She had campaigned for Gay Marriage Rights and the right for a Woman to Choose. I already said I was smitten.

I don’t know if this was planned or not, but during our walk, she ran into her brother who was also cycling in the park. He also liked California and was a baseball fan, so we talked about that for a few minutes before he cycled on. We completed our loop of the park a little bit later, and she unlocked her bike. I would say the signs were there for a hug (and more?), but I didn’t want to get too close because she was going to go check in on her elderly father. So I settled for a wave goodbye.

I texted her when I got home, and the conversation continued. I obviously wanted to see her again, and I was delighted that she wanted to see me too. We arranged for a trip to Glasnevin – an historical cemetery in Dublin. I’m feeling good about this!

(First Date – 29 August, 2021)