I’m not new to Tinder. Scrolling through my messages there’s some on there from 2013, however, I’d never actually been on a Tinder date until last year.
Over the past five years, I’d never taken Tinder too seriously, and I hadn’t spoken to many guys where it had ever got to asking for a date. In the few times I had been chatting with someone who I’d consider going on a date with, I’d always panic and decline. In the past, I’d never dated anyone I didn’t know somewhat before, so I think I had a fear of the unknown.
Roll on 2017 and me and a friend made it our new years resolution to bite the bullet and say yes to a Tinder date. I’d been living in Manchester for 6 months at this point and I think not living with my mum and having to explain where I was going and who I was seeing helped me to actually do this.
So, around summer time I got speaking to this guy who we will call ‘E’. We’d both moved to Manchester in the past year, had a few similar interests, and the chat seemed to flow nicely.
We must have been speaking for around 2-3 weeks before I’d had one too many wines and had the courage to ask him out for a drink. Thankfully he didn’t decline and strip me of all my self-confidence!
It turned out we lived in the same apartment complex, he was just in another block so we decided to go for a drink somewhere close, as I didn’t know any decent bars near I let him decide (really wish I’d hadn’t!)
The evening arrived, and safe to say I was SHITTING myself. I’m such an overthinker, and all that was running through my head was what do I do when I meet him?! Do I go in for a hug? Do I just say hi? Do I shake his hand? Do I bloody curtsey. No that would be weird…
I tried to get to where we were meeting a bit earlier so I didn’t have to be the one to find him (again, overthinking) but he beat me to it. So I went over (probs physically shaking with nerves at this point) and said hi, and he went in for the hug. It was SOOOO awkward, but I realised at this point he was also really nervous, and this put me slightly at ease as I realised we were in the same boat.
So we walk to this local pub, the walk over is fine and the awkwardness is subsiding. There’s not been any awkward silences which is a good sign. As soon as we walked in that door it started to go downhill.
Now I want to clarify, I’m not at all a snob. I LOVE going to your standard ‘old man pub’ with my friends for cheap drinks and a great laugh, but for a first date, this pub was the absolute worst setting.
We got in there and it was busy but SO quiet. You could tell most of the people in there were locals and we were not. I asked if he knew anywhere else nearby that might have a better atmosphere, he said no this was the best place he knew and that was that. (Oh how I wish I’d suggested somewhere in the city centre!)
He ordered us a drink and we sat down, I could have been being overly paranoid but it felt like everyone was staring at us, so my awkward levels obviously rose again. We’d been sat there ‘chatting’ for about half an hour when it dawned on me that I hadn’t really said much… ‘E’ didn’t know when to shut up.
I’m guessing it was his nerves, which is totally understandable, but the fact I’d not spoken made me more nervous. ‘What if he thinks I’m boring’, kept going through my head. So I had to fight to find a gap in the conversation to try and tell him a bit about myself. Every time I managed to get a word in edgeways he would just bring the conversation back to him (speak about what you know I guess?)
Eventually, we got on to his friends, and how most of them were settled down, married with kids and this was what he was looking for the same thing. At this point, I had to get up and get another glass of wine, because I did not expect to hear such serious chat on the first date in an old man pub. I swear I heard one woman choke on her drink when he said this.
Now I’m not saying I wouldn’t like to settle down one day, BUT THIS IS NOT FIRST DATE CHAT. Saying that this is my first ever Tinder date, so what do I know?!
The vicious circle of ‘E’ talking about himself, me trying to butt in, and him going back to talking about himself carried on until we’d finished our second drink and I said I best be off as I had work the next morning. Completely forgetting he lived near me so we’d have to walk back together!
He nipped to the loo before we left and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t tempted to just leave and avoid 10 more minutes of sheer awkwardness. I’m not that much of an awful person though.
So we walked home, nice and awkward, and got to the entrance to my block. We had a ‘lovely’ awkward hug, and I stupidly said, oh we should do something again, while inside my head I was screaming ‘NO NO NO, WHAT ARE YOU SAYING YOU STUPID COW’. To which, he just sort of grunted and said goodbye.
Turns out, we both thought the date was terrible as I never messaged him, and he never messaged me. We’ve literally not spoken or seen each other (thankfully) since the date, and I honestly couldn’t have wished for a better outcome.
So my first ever Tinder date wasn’t a success, but it did throw me out of my comfort zone and I have been on Tinder dates with two other guys since this one, so I have ‘E’ to thank for something!