The Coffee Shop – A First Date Story
The loud melodic whirr of an industrial-sized coffee grinder provided background as I chatted with a coworker in line. While waiting for my Skinny Raspberry Latte, he approached, extended his hand, lowered his head with a business-like nod and introduced himself, “Hi, I’m Tom.”
Nestled in the corner of the church’s bookstore, this Café was my refuge; my chosen place for the rare event of a first date. With coffee in hand, I headed over to ‘my table,’ a little corner booth by the window.
He worked at the church as well, although I had no recollection of seeing him around. Suspecting as much, when he sent the email to ask me out, he included a headshot and references of some mutual friends.
I agreed to this date mainly to appease my mother who believed I had antennae on my head only visible to men that flashed, “Go Away!” However, I had no intention of a relationship going further than coffee, so I commanded my daughter to call me promptly at 7:00pm to feign some dilemma that would enable my escape.
Although I was prepared for her call, something strange started happening. He was funny. He made me laugh and I began to feel more at ease. My phone rang right on time, and I…surprising even me, let it go to voicemail.
By 8:30pm, I started to feel a bit loopy. Hypoglycemia is not very forgiving, and he immediately picked up on my queues.
“Why don’t you let me take you to dinner?” My apprehensive look gave him cause for more rational prodding. “You can drive your own car. There’s a Fuddruckers across the street. Let’s just go, have a meal, and we can finish our conversation there.”
I agreed to those terms.
As we entered the restaurant, I paused at the posted salad menu. “I hear they have pretty good hamburgers here,” he said while pointing to the menu I really wanted to look at instead. I smiled, picked my burger, and this time, allowed him to pay.
I also allowed him to pick the table, but I forgot to get my drink, so I headed back to the soda bar. As I returned, he got up and went to the empty chair across the table. “I guess he didn’t like where he was sitting,” I assumed. So I sat down in the chair he just vacated.
I looked up at him still standing on the other side of the table; now I’m confused. He’s laughing. “I’m guessing you’ve never had someone pull your chair out for you?”
Red heat quickly flushed through my face. “Um…no.” I got up, changed chairs and allowed him to finish his chivalrous act.
He sat back down in his original chair and had such a captivating grin, “Well, you might want to get used to that.”
Tom chuckles fondly as he finishes reading, “That’s the way I remember it too, my love.”
With thankful hearts, we whisper, “Happy Anniversary.”