Tuesday, December 20, 2011

How Handsome Hero and I met - the first date

Ten years ago yesterday, Handsome Hero and I went out for our first date.

Now if you are not in "the know," let me fill you in.  When you are single and work in ministry, people just don't believe that you could possibly be happy that way.  By the time I met Handsome Hero, I had been set up with sons, brothers, cousins, friends, and fathers {no kidding}.  Sometimes I knew about it {Hey, I have this great guy I'd like you to meet} and sometimes I didn't {We'd love to have you come over for dinner, and when I got there, Oh, by the way, this is my son.  We thought you two might get along}.

Bill was the first date I'd been excited about in a little while, and the first date for which I'd ever been nervous.  I was a wreck.  I agreed to share a dish I don't care for and then I couldn't keep my food on the fork!  It just kept dropping back onto my plate.  I think the fork was faulty.

Side note:  Years later, we were eating out and Handsome Hero said, "Hey, you don't even like sweet and sour chicken!"

Though we were both nervous, the conversation came very easily.  As is often the case with relationships that are meant to be, we talked for hours.  It was wonderful.

Here are some observations I made about my future husband through the date.

Firstly, I was very impressed that he took the time and effort to research which Chinese restaurant was the best in the area, though I now know that he researches everything and this was no different.  It is a quality I have learned to greatly appreciate, and it all started on our first date.

Secondly,  he drove an old truck.  This may sound odd, but I was relieved when I saw that.  I am never impressed when people have really nice cars that they obviously can't afford.  I was raised to live within my means, and if he had driven a nice or new car I would have been concerned.  Handsome Hero was still in college, taking a year off to do an internship, so he didn't have a career yet.  If he had driven a nice vehicle, most likely he either didn't have good money management or his parents bought it for him, and neither scenario would have been impressive to me.

Thirdly, he was a true gentleman.  He made me feel very special.  I had been shocked when I moved out of the South to have so few men open doors for me, something I had always assumed was common courtesy. Handsome Hero was very chivalrous, and he still is.  He still opens the car door for me when he doesn't have a squirming kiddo that he's wrestling into a carseat.  :)

Back to the restaurant.  Here is how the critical part of our conversation went:

Beth:  So, what are you doing for Christmas?
Bill:  I'm spending it with my brother who's teaching at West Point.
Beth:  That sounds great!
Bill:  What are you doing for the holidays?
Beth:  I'm going home to my family in Tennessee.  What are you doing for New Year's?
Bill:  I don't have any plans yet.
Beth:  You want to come to Tennessee and meet my family?  {Cough, gulp}  Excuse me, I have to go to the restroom.

{Beth exits to the bathroom and hyperventilates over the realization of what she has done.  She composes herself and returns to the table, determined to pretend it didn't happen.  Her mantra: don't scare him away, don't scare him away....}

---the next day---

Bill:  Hi, Beth!
Beth:  Hi, Bill!  What's up?
Bill:  Hey, I just bought a ticket to come to TN for New Years.
Beth:  Wow!  That's great! {exhale.  Big sigh of relief}

I don't know if it was that he bought a ticket so quickly, or maybe that he asked me out for our second date before we even left for our first, but we both knew this was different.  This was very different.

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE that you love that Bill had an old truck. I can totally groove with your line of thinking!!! It reveals so much about a person. Love it! Sonja