I don’t do blind dates… anymore

by lulujane on March 21, 2009

Twenty minutes with a person you don’t like is too much.  Imagine feeling trapped for three hours or more.

A fewe years back a friend had been bugging me to go out with her friend.  I would like to say ‘encouraging’ me, but no, she pestered me every so often until I finally gave in.

Cautiously I decided that meeting him in a public place to go for a walk on a busily travelled walkway would be the best.  He greeted me with a flower which I suppose was a good start. I placed the rose carefully on the front seat of my car and we started out on our walk. Within five minutes he wanted to do a tune-up on my car, cook for me, invited me to his home on the weekend, asked me to join for dinner on his birthday the following week, etc.  He was trying too hard. At this point I realized I had no desire to talk about myself, and our hour long walk was filled with me asking questions and him talking about himself. I even learned that he could sew.  Now this part was tempting, because I can always use hemming alternations on the hems of new slacks.  Hmmmmm……. but ‘no’.

lindas-retirement-small1A short distance away from where our cars were parked he asked about the possibility of seeing me again.  I gently discouraged this in the best way I knew how.  As we got to the car I almost sighed because the date was over.  But he continued to extoll the virtues of my vehicle, talking about the power of the engine, walking around to kick tires, etc. for about twenty minutes.  Finally… we said our goodbyes and I got into my car, backed out and started to drive off.

Before I even had a chance to exhale in relief,  he had walked to the roadway, waving his arms, desperately trying to flag me down.  I thought ‘what now’?  He had locked his keys in his car.  His CAA had expired the day before.  I offered to call CAA using my card but he refused it because this wouldn’t be honest. We walked across the street to a riverside restaurant and he used the pay phone to call his daughter.  No answer.  Then I got the question of all questions, me, who had been seeking immediate relief from this date night, was being asked to drive him home to Leamington which about an hour’s drive from Windsor, so that he could get his spare key.  Oh well!

Who knows how much of this was contrived?  As I write this it seems as clear as white chalk on a blackboard.  At the time, I was a nice person.  I am still a nice person.  Despite working too hard to gain my approval, this fellow seemed to be a good man.  I couldn’t leave him stranded. I felt like a victim and that I didn’t have a choice.  I did have a choice.  I know that now.  My choice at the time was to say o.k.

So, I drove him to Leamington to get his keys, and back to his car in Windsor, spending an additional two hours making small talk and listening, and listening and listening.  At one point he mentioned his birthdate.  There was a coincidence here, in that his first name and birthdate were both the same as my youngest son.  I am big on synchronicity myself and didn’t dare make him aware of this as I am sure he would have seized on it as A SIGN.  I just know I didn’t see it as a sign.  The only sign I saw was “Don’t mention it”.

I did get through it as did he.  Both of us were out in the world, hesitantly hoping,  looking to find the right person to share our lives with. He was a gentleman all the way, but as the episode rolled along, it felt like I had been roped into something I would rather have avoided.

On that particular evening one of my sons was staying over at my home.  When I arrived home he was in a panic.  When I left home I had casually mentioned that I was meeting someone to go for a walk and would be home around 9:30 at the latest.  It was after 11:00 when I got home and he was frantic.  If I didn’t arrive before 11:30 he was going to drive to the parking lot to look for my car.  He was going to call the police.

Despite his panic, a warm glow passed over me.

It was sure nice having someone there who loved me, waiting for me to come home.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Bree 03.25.09 at 8:43 am

Well done Linda! I think we must all have a story or two similar, faced with a decision to either give in to our sense of duty (“I had no choice!”) or listen to our intuitive sense. Or BOTH. And this is what you did.
You weighed the situation and made a decision. That conscious decision making process negates you as a possible victim. So I commend you Linda, you took a tough situation, and made the best decision you could. I’m grateful that he was indeed a gentleman, what with being in your car! 🙂
Good luck in the future…I’ll keep my eye out!

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