Our adventures together – Part 10

#FirstDate #FirstDates #FirstDatesIRL #Dating #Kilkenny #Germany #Essen #Spiel2022 #BoardGames #Halloween #OatBread #Recipe #kclr96fm #LEGO

Looking back through my photos for October, it is pretty clear that Jeanne and I did not do nearly as many trips together in Autumn as we did in Summer. Now, we still spent a lot of time together. We just weren’t doing the fun trips that you can do in Ireland during the Summer months.

Another reason I don’t have as many photos of us together is that I went to Essen, Germany (via Düsseldorf) the first weekend of October.

Essen is home to Internationale Spieltage SPIEL or Essen Game Fair. It is the largest board game trade fair in the world. I went to it in 2018 and 2019, but couldn’t go the last two years because of COVID. I was eager to go again and check out all of the new board games I’ve been missing. I went with my good friend Derek who I met at the game store in Kilkenny on my first visit there in 2016.

To help combat COVID, people had to wear masks indoors in Germany.  And that was a good thing for SPIEL as there were nearly 50,000 people attending each of the four days. And since the halls are packed with people, it is easy to get separated from your traveling companion. In order to be easily visible, and in order to play up the fact that my nickname is Pope, I wear a papal mitre during the fair. Because of this, I have made friends at SPIEL that I visit on each of my trips. Here is a picture with renowned game designer Tony Boydell.

And here I am with Saint Patrick.

Essen is also home to a LEGO store, so I had to check it out.

The first year at SPIEL, I probably spent about €1000 for new games. So, I felt good about spending a mere €250 this year. Some of the games that I buy get played at Game Night every Wednesday in The Front Room in Kilkenny. Jeanne continues to accompany me to a majority of those events. She really enjoys learning the new games, and I really enjoy having her there.

The Friday after SPIEL, Jeanne and I went over to Derek’s house. We had some snacks, drank some great wine, and played some fun games. Here is a picture of Jeanne as the Skull champion.

While we were there, Derek served us some lovely Oat Bread. I asked him for the recipe, and here it is:


  • 276g oats
  • 14g bread soda
  • 342g yogurt (may need more yoghurt)
  • 2tbsp ground flaxseed


  1. Combine the ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Spoon mixture into a baking pan
  3. Bake at 180° for 45 minutes.

At the beginning of the year, KCLR interviewed me about this very blog. Constant readers will know that the juicy details of every First Date ended in mid-October with First Date 55 – Jeanne. So, KCLR had me back on to discuss how my journey went. I spoke with Eimear Ní Bhraonáin about chronicling the dates using LEGO, and she was excited that I had found a love match. Eimer suggested that I should go back on with Jeanne in February for their Valentine’s show!

I’m not a big fan of Autumn, and I definitely don’t like when it starts getting darker and colder. But I am a HUGE fan of Halloween! I don’t necessarily dress up in a scary outfit. I usually dress as something silly. This year, I went as Ted Lasso. It’s a great show, and you should watch it! Jeanne was Morticia Addams. Here are some photos of us with our friends at Ryan’s Bar in Kilkenny.

Ten months together, and Jeanne is still a 10 out of 10. At the end of October, Jeanne moved in with me. We have turned my house into our house, and I’m delighted. The first 10 months have been great. I’m looking forward to the next ten years and beyond!