I got chatting to Ashley on Tinder. She’s new to town, a nurse from Wales and I joked that if she played her cards right I would be her tour guide. She insisted that I would have to go through a rigorous interview process and with that a date was arranged pretty quickly thereafter. Ashley had some friends in town who were going on a tour with her on the Saturday morning. I suggested we met afterwards for a short date. I had plans for that night but had a few hours to kill beforehand and it suited her as well.
It was a really cold day so I threw on some black jeans, a warm red jumper and a leather coat. I met Ashley in town and we headed to a nice bar to watch the Ireland v New Zealand rugby match. It was actually her suggestion and I was all for it.
At this point I should point out how I categorise my dates:
Three Categories of Women
Category B: ‘Fun Time’ – I would probably sleep with you but I wouldn’t date you exclusively. No relationship prospects.
Category C: I would do neither of the above with you.
Within about five seconds of seeing a girl I would categorise them as one of the above. It is not something I proactively think about, but it is an instant judgement that is made none the less. Of course it is possible for my outlook to change. For example, a girl may come across as a someone I would date but says she doesn’t have time for a relationship which makes me think she is more of a fun time girl. It may sound a little judgmental but I believe it is something that everybody does to a certain degree.
Ashley was very petite, 5’2 with bright blue eyes and long brown hair, really cute. She was definitely a Category A kind of girl. Ashley was wearing a black skirt black heels and brown top under a full length winters coat. Her accent was very strong, that’s one of the first things that stood out. When we sat down she took her coat off and half gave out, half apologised for a crease in her top insisting that she had ironed it earlier. That struck me as a bit odd as I couldn’t care less and wouldn’t have noticed it in any event.
The date itself went reasonably well. We had coffees to start and then a few bottles of Heineken. Conversation was fairly stop start with trying to balance watching the match and getting to know my date. In hindsight I don’t really think its the best thing to do for a first date. If I was to do it again I would at least meet a good while before the match started as it basically kicked off as we sat down. Generally I avoid the short dates as you might figure out if you don’t like the person pretty quickly but I’m not sure if you can figure out how into them you are in that brief time either.
We had a decent chance to chat at half time. Everything was a bit polite and proper. I’m not sure if Ashley was a bit nervous or just not overly outgoing. There wasn’t a huge amount of banter going back and forth (some from me obviously). The match wasn’t going very well for us so that helped divert attention to conversation in the second half at least. It still felt like we hadn’t been there very long come the end of the match. We could well have really have hit it off if we had another hour or two afterwards to have a few more drinks (get tipsy). Again, this is why I really don’t like the shorter dates, but I didn’t want to stay texting each other for another week either. I was definitely attracted to Ashley but wasn’t sure how well we clicked.
At the end of the date I was fairly confident that we were going to meet again. I wasn’t overly pushed at the same time. Ashley was ‘nice’ and cute, that’s about as far as I had gotten. I walked her the train station and we were chatting about work. It was about a 20 minute wait for her train. One thing I found really odd was that she didn’t have cooking facilities in her temporary accommodation and she wasn’t eating because she “didn’t know where to go”. I told her the name of a delivery app and where her nearest supermarket was (not far). I told her she was silly and should be looking after herself but left it at that.
While we were waiting I started talking about a new girl in work who had just moved to London. Her husband lived abroad and there wasn’t much socialising in work for her to join in on. I felt sorry for her because I imagined her weekends were very boring and lonely. She’s only about 25 and obviously can’t avail of Tinder for social purposes. I do think it can be very hard to meet people if you’re not from around here, particularly if you don’t have any hobbies which serve as a way of meeting people. A lot of people do seem to come and go as well.
As I was talking about this I noticed Ashley had stopped making eye contact with me. She was looking at the ground and acting a little strange. I asked if she was alright only to realise that she was crying! That’s right. I had inadvertently reduced my date to a blubbering flood of tears! Ashley was only living here a week. I assumed she had a few friends here because she had met a couple who lived here earlier that day. Apparently she felt lonely and me talking about the girl in work resonated with her quite strongly!
Her train wasn’t due for another ten minutes but I think I handled the situation quite well. I gave her a hug and rubbed her back while saying a few stupid things which made her laugh (snort). She was still sniffling when the train came. I gave her a peck on the lips and let her go. Alright, it wasn’t a total train wreck. I didn’t offend her religion or do something that warranted a slap, but it did rather tarnish the date and we were at a train station!
That was quite a curve ball. The date had gone reasonably well in my mind. I sent Ashley a text an hour later to make sure she was alright. She seemed happy I had done so and was probably more embarrassed than anything. I feel pretty bad for her and will try keep contact regardless of what happens but we’ll see…
What would you have done?