If you follow me on Twitter (@itsmymatepaddy) you will have seen I recently went on a social distance date.
The date came around after matching with the woman on Hinge. We chatted for a bit on there, seemed to have a fair bit in common so decided to swap numbers.
The chat then turned to Whats App. We would speak for the best part of a week, back and forward day and night. The more we talked the more we found we had in common with each other.
It seemed to go great. Although there wasn’t really any flirting going on in the texts, it was more like a normal conversation with your mate. Not that its a bad thing but looking back now maybe that should have been a bit of an insight. Anyway hindsights a lovely thing isn’t it. Anyway we arranged a date. We agreed it would be a social distance date. If you’re reading this after corona is over, there was a time when on a date you had to be 2 metres apart. The world was closed.
I arrived early at the agreed location. I thought if she turns up early I don’t want her waiting around for me.
When she arrived I got up from the seat and although slightly awkward that you couldn’t greet with a hug it wasn’t as awkward as I thought. She looked like her photos, bonus, a lovely looking lass.
We walked and we talked. About everything. Again a lot of things in common and the chat was free flowing. Holidays, drinking, trips away with mates, what we like to do in the normal world all that sort of stuff. After about an hour or so of following the social distance guidelines we decided to sit down. Again, following the social distance guideance, as the evening past so did the topics of conversation. We chatted for another further hour and half. Then decided it was time to call the date to an end. We walked back to the entrance, chatted for another half an hour and then went our separate ways. Before we did we joked that if it wasn’t for the virus we would’ve finished with a hug. Instead we waved goodbye and went on our separate ways.
It all sounds lovely and great doesn’t it? A 2nd date surely on the cards after hours and hours of being out in the dropping temperature of the setting sun. Skip to 10 minutes later as I’m on my way home and I started to process the date.
As I processed it I thought although the date itself wasn’t awkward, no silences or anything like that, the situation itself was awkward. Not allowed to touch someone, even in the flirty way of touching someone on the arm or just general playfulness. It was also awkward at the end when you can’t go in for a hug, even as a friendly goodbye.
My thoughts on the woman, lovely and I’m sure she will make someone very happy one day. However, right now I don’t think that someone would be me. I could easily chat to her about anything like a friend would. I just couldn’t really see it going any further from that date. Would I have gone on a 2nd date? Yeah I think I would’ve given it some consideration as long as it wasn’t the same sort of date. Maybe an activity, mini golf was one suggestion from a friend on Twitter.
However talk didn’t move to a 2nd date. The chat has now faded away to nothing. It seems we both had the same idea that a 2nd date probably wasn’t going to be on the cards.
Would I have another socially distanced date? No, well OK 90% no, 8% yes and 2% maybe. It wasn’t for me. I’m not the best at reading signals. You could wear a t-shirt that had “YOU’RE FIT! YES, YOU PADDY” on it and i’d still miss the hint. Mainly because my real names not Paddy, but you get my point.
I missed the hug, the awkward hug at the start and end of the date. The first “oh do I hug or go in for a kiss on the cheek” type hug. The hug before going separate ways. The “was the date good enough for a kiss or just a hug? If I hug them will they be disappointed? If I go in for the kiss will they be freaked out” hug. But that’s the sort of thing that makes a date, the ability to have some form of contact, touch and closeness. Without that you’re just walking with a stranger and it seems a bit weird.
I’ve no doubt some people will prefer dates like this. I liked the fact that this type of date didn’t feel high pressured. I also imagine some people may have found love in lockdown from these sort of dates which is great. But alas not for me.
For now Paddy continues the life of being a single man. For different reasons I think it is the right time for me to be single, it may well be a case of dodging the apps for a little while due to a few things I need to deal with. I’ll still be here and i’ll still be writing, I’ve plenty to write about but for now, the new dates may be on hold.