I went on a date last evening with a grade one teacher: which means class one to those of us who are still trying to wrap our heads around the competency-based curriculum. Teachers have always fascinated me, there is intrigue in someone who can move you from a place of ignorance to that of understanding.
I met her during one of my runs and I knew we would hit it off. If she could handle the sweaty short-of-breath version of me, there is no version she couldn’t handle. I saw her from behind and I liked her lovely brown legs. I also liked the way her dress sat on her curves. Ladies, a good dress is the axe for the frozen sea within us.
I ran past her and pretended to lace up my shoes—and kids, that is how I met your mother. Haha. She had long braids, a round face, and big brown eyes with the whitest whites. If you know anything about me, you know I’m a sucker for big brown eyes with the whitest whites. We exchanged contact details and I continued with my run. You could say I had a skip in my step this time around.
You know that feeling after you meet someone new—The feeling of possibilities. I had that feeling all week—When you wonder who they truly are; What makes them tick? How do they see the world? When you wish you could wear their skin and become them. But this is not a scene from Jeffery Dahmer, just a good old boy meets girl story.
I called her and we planned a date. “I’m really nervous, can I come with a friend?” she asked just before the appointed time. I have been opposed to friends coming along on dates before but that was when I was a boy. Now, it’s a gift of getting to know someone new.
Her friend was short, dark-skinned with heavy breasts that seemed to be bursting out of her thin grey sweater, which she wore on top of a blue dress. From first appearances, which Franz Kafka says are always unreliable—and which I say set the tone for later interactions, she was warm and good-hearted. After hugs and niceties, my date’s nervousness dissipated and her friend excused herself.
We got into a café with my date, sat in a corner, and ordered tea and chapati. I would be remiss (I always wanted to use that word in an informal setting.) I would be remiss if I failed to tell you how she was dressed.
One of the exciting things about first dates is the confirmation that what you saw and liked was not a dream. Sitting beside me the dream was real in a flowery dress, black flats, and a long flowing white sweater. “So what do you do?” the dream asked.
We ended up talking about everything and nothing. Her hobby was cooking and besides teaching, she had a side hustle of selling clothes and jewelry. When we were not talking we stared at each other and as we did something shiny around her neck caught my eye.
“Is that necklace a gift from someone?” I asked.
“This necklace?” she held it and looked at it as if seeing it for the first time. “Yeah, it was a gift from a friend. It actually needs a key. Let me show you,” she said while removing it. It was heart-shaped with key mark engravings. “The other person’s necklace is shaped like a key and it fits perfectly on these marks,” she added.
I thought it was poetic. Perhaps she will be the muse that inspires me to finish my poetry collection. I thought selfishly. “A he or she?” I asked holding my breath.
“A she,” she giggled while putting it back.
She had barely touched her tea and chapati. “You know sharing a meal with someone is very important. When you share a meal with someone, it means they can’t harm you and you can’t harm them.” I pulled that one straight out of my ass. “I am not big on tea,” she said. “I like junk food,” she added. “Do you go to church? “she asked without preamble.
Ladies always love to ask me this question. I cannot remember the last time I was in church and my views about it could be considered controversial so I try to hold back. “I have not been to church in a while,” I said casually.
“Why,” she asked inquisitively.
“It’s just not for me,” I said.
“You know what they say, where two or three are gathered there is God,” she said.
“If I made something in the image and likeness of the spoon you are holding, what would that make it?” I asked as she stirred her tea.
“A spoon,” she said with a raised brow, not knowing where I was going with it.
“You are made in the image and likeness of God, what does that make you?”
“I am not going to say,” she gasped.
“My point is, there is God in each and every one of us and you can be a good person who does good things without going to church. And I suppose the opposite is also true,” I said. She’s an ardent churchgoer, she sings in the choir, so she was unnerved and she went on a church sale campaign to convince me.
“You have told me you don’t like tea. Imagine if I forced you to have that tea, it would be a bad experience for both of us, right?” I asked.
She nodded and we eased into another conversation. “What did you think about me when you saw me?” she asked and I went on to tell her what I told you when I began this story. “I thought you had lovely legs,” I started and she blushed and I continued going to the point where she removed her white flowing sweater to reveal small smooth brown shoulders.
The sun had been replaced with the moon when we left the café. I walked her home since it’s close to where I live. It is the most romantic thing walking together slowly under streetlights. “Thank you for the date,” she later texted and we wound up the evening with a goodnight text. And I thought, this one, this one might just be the one who gets me back to church.
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