This date was not planned out in advance. Earlier this week I had been talking to this woman and she hinted she was interested in a date, so I asked her. I had a pretty busy week so there was not much planning involved on my part since. She picked the restaurant: traditional Belgian cuisine.
I meet her there and we discuss our jobs. I am in IT. She works at a café. It turns out that she is a lot younger than I had guessed. I reckon it is because she seems pretty mature for her age. I realize that that kind of maturity probably comes from experiencing tough times early on and pulling through. I know better than to ask.
She also went through a breakup. Hers is more recent than mine. She seems to be coping very well and she is genuinely enjoying herself on this date. It makes for a pleasant and relaxed atmosphere. The topic changes a lot. We talk about the date project, relationships and work. I used to own a cybercafe so we can relate about serving sometimes-less-than-reasonable customers.
After the food we go out for more drinks and decide on a Jazz&Blues café. It is crowded there so we take a seat at the bar. While we are sitting there a guy starts talking to us. He is obviously inebriated and chatty. He is at the stage of drunkenness where he thinks everyone should be their friend.
I take a look at the woman working the bar. She is a short attractive blonde woman who is obviously not a local. This huge guy is being overly friendly to her as she serves his drinks. She handles it expertly and we share an eye roll when he goes back to his seat, drinks in hand. I take a mental note because this guy might become a problem if he keeps drinking. That tiny woman is the only staff in this café. When he raises his voice and starts mentioning Israel and Palestine she immediately shuts him down: she tells him with authority “you are not discussing politics in my bar”. Her no-nonsense tone gets the message across and he sits down and lowers his voice a bit. Crisis averted. That lady is getting a huge tip from me when I leave.
The bar is too noisy to have a decent chat. I have to keep asking my date to repeat herself. It makes for a stunted conversation at times. We decide to go to a more quiet place so we can talk more easily. We discuss feminism some more and our local Salsa scene. I always enjoy hearing about other people’s experiences and points of view and tonight is no exception. I manage to learn quite a few things. After a lot of interesting conversation she calls it a night, she has to work tomorrow. Ten dates down and all of them were a lot of fun!
Food: Steak and fries at a more traditional Belgian restaurant, pretty much the most traditional Belgian dish you can get. It was around €20. I hate to admit it, but this is the first time I was disappointed by the food on a date. The fries and the sauce were below standard.