Wednesday, January 25, 2012


On Friday night, I had dinner with a lovely fellow.  We met for tapas and sangria in Old Town, finishing with an exquisitely delicious Tres Leches cake.  The conversation flowed.  I laughed.  A lot.  I found myself illogically smiling throughout the evening, pleased with my good fortune.  I felt happy and flushed with anticipation, even though the evening was already in progress.

There was a moment during dinner where I said something that came out wrong.  I reached out across the table in a gesture of clarification or apology or something.  We were both laughing, but he grabbed my hand and held it for a moment and told me it was okay, he understood what I meant. 

When we left the restaurant, it was snowing.  Just a little bit, but it was beautiful.  We walked a block over to another restaurant to have a drink.  Old Town is so lovely, anyway, but in the snow, on a sparkly, shiny, happy, new date, it was positively glowing.  It was quieter than usual, perhaps because of the weather.  We got a tall table by the front window of the restaurant, which meant we got a view of the snow beyond the window, the awning of the restaurant, fluttering down beneath the streetlights. 

After the drinks, we left out onto the street, and it was snowing pretty well by then.  The sidewalks were slick with a mix of the snow and some freezing rain that had mixed in.  I'd worn these brand new, lovely suede ankle boots, which I'd luckily treated before wearing, LOL.  Nonetheless, they had a bit of a heel, and it was a little slick.  I asked my date if I could borrow his arm for balance, and he obliged.  We walked to my car with my arm looped through his, our shoulders touching with each step.

When we parted, he hugged me.  A short time later he texted to make sure I'd gotten home okay.

I felt puzzled.  He didn't even try to kiss me?  Did he not like me?  What was wrong?  I went over the events of the evening and all signs pointed to him liking me.  I couldn't figure it out.  My thoughts wandered from what was wrong with me to what was wrong with him. 

Then I realized what I was doing.

This man, this date, had been a gentleman.  And he was shy.  I made him nervous.  I could tell.  Even if I hadn't known on my own, he told me as much in advance, and again while we were out.  It was puzzling, but endearing.  I knew that during the date, but somehow after, I'd forgotten.  It would have been out of character for this shy man to kiss me on our first date.  And that was okay.  It was okay to part with a hug.

I am historically attracted to a very specific type.  There is no physical type, as each person I've dated for any measure of time has looked dramatically different from the others.  It's a personality type.  Sarcastic.  Cocky.  Charming.  Smooth.  Knows just what to say and when to say it. 

This new guy, he was an anomaly.  He was out of type for me.  He was charming in an awkward, nervous way.  He was funny, but not in a sarcastic way.  He was smart, but not in an overbearing way.  He was sweet.  Just sweet.

It's amazing the things that your brain internalizes over the years, the things that become a habit, an expectation.  I'd become accustomed to a way of being with someone.  Layers of heavy sarcasm over almost everything.  Intense highs and lows.  Tiny, almost imperceptible digs at my intelligence.  A feeling of never having enough experience, or the right experience. 

I want to break my patterns.  I don't want to wonder what is wrong with a man when he is polite and well spoken and gentlemanly.  I want to appreciate those things, to know that those are things that I want in a man, and to *expect* them.  I shouldn't be surprised when I encounter them.  I should be surprised when I don't.

It's a process.  I have to remind myself often of all of these little things.  I deserve better than what I've had.  I deserve more.  I am worth more.  And beyond me, I try to remember the other things.  Waiting can be a good thing.  Anticipation can be excellent.  Taking it slow can be exquisite. 

I'm not saying this man is my soulmate.  I'm not saying he is the answer to all of my previous relationship woes, the one who will redeem my faith in everything.  I'm just saying that on Friday, I had a positively lovely, luminous date with a very nice man. It was like something out of a book or a movie, so scenic and perfect, like a moment in time captured in a bottle.  The world became so small and snug, and I was happy in it's cocoon.

We have a second date on Saturday night. 

1 comment:

  1. you can't see me, but i started clapping when i saw your last line! it sounds like a night you'll always remember!