‘I love first dates’ Tom was thinking as he admired his image in the bedroom mirror. He combed his wet hair, ensuring every strand was perfect. The crisp white shirt and blue jacket lay on the bed. He was excited by the evenings prospect thinking he must ensure that the place was tidy in case he ‘got lucky’. He didn’t want smelly socks or dirty boxers spoiling his chance to score later on. A smile hung on his lips, at that thought, as he applied aftershave to his face.
‘First dates are awful’ said Alice to her flatmate, Becky, as she searched amongst the debris in the bottom of her wardrobe for something clean to wear. ‘I hate all the small talk and posturing, it makes me nervous’. Becky nodded as she continued reading her emails. Alice picked one of her blouses and put it under the mattress hoping to reduce the creases in it.
Sitting in the back of the taxi as it sped through the early evening traffic, Tom looked out of the window and hoped it wouldn’t rain and ruin his look. He liked to be early so he could watch for his date entering the bar. It gave him a feeling of superiority.
The bus was late, and Alice was freezing standing alone at the stop. ‘Why did I let them talk me into this’ she thought as, after a time, the bus appeared. On her walk to the bus stop the wind had messed her hair and she’d stepped into a huge puddle which had left her, once white, trainers covered in thick, oily mud.
Tom sat at the table and sipped his vodka and tonic. He was early and the place was beginning to fill up. On the next table sat a man in an old leather jacket and torn jeans. Couples sat talking above the gentle hum of background music. The door opened and his date came in, he smiled and stood up as the waiter pointed to his table.
Alice was late, as usual. She took a deep breath, pushed open the door and went in. The heat rushed at her and straight away fogged her glasses. A waiter came across to her and waited patiently whilst she wiped her lenses on the edge of her blouse. He pointed in the direction of her date who beamed at her as she sat down.
Alice spoke of her job as a nurse, Tom talked about his work in high finance,. The evening was going really well and they both felt relaxed and comfortable.
Tom called the waiter to order more drinks, and looking across at the table where the old leather jacket now hung on its owners chair back, he noticed the man’s date. He was surprised by her windblown hair and muddy trainers. He laughed and said to his table companion. ‘I could never go out with someone like that’. He laughed too.