As Sunday night rolls around I’m looking forward to lounging on my couch binge-watching HBO Go, when suddenly my calendar alert goes off, I have a date in an hour?! Oh oh! I’m already dressed from my friend’s wedding so it’s no big getting ready, but I’m hungry and I don’t remember him saying anything about dinner, just drinks. Why do they all want to meet for drinks? I guess it’s the safest bet, if you meet someone for the first time and they suck, you can always leave as soon as you down the first glass.
I text my date and ask if he would mind meeting at a “less formal” restaurant where we could eat and have a drink! He writes back and agrees to the venue change. Note to all the men and women who date: if you ask to meet someone at or around dinner time, expect that they will be hungry! So don’t ask them to meet you at a place where the food might be too expensive for a first date. Moving on…
I quickly email my date’s profile photo and bio to coach RJ who replies with: “He seems shy, you might have to let your guard down a little to make him feel more comfortable.” That shouldn’t be a problem RJ because as you know, I’m suuuuper nice and easy going. 🙂
I arrive and spot him sitting at the bar, I must say I do love that none of these guys have made me wait on them. He stands up to greet me and when I take the last two steps to get closer and shake his hand, I slip on the wet floor, but he moves quick, and before I can kiss the floor I literally fall into his arms! “Nice catch!” I say to him laughing. He gives me a hug, I mean why not, we’re already here!
We sit and talk about the usual things, where we’re from, what we do, etc… My favorite part about him is that he’s originally from India and I get really excited about this because I can put my college Hinduism course to good use! Plus I practice yoga and meditate which are two other things we share a common interest in. I ask him what religion he practices and he tells me: “I believe in Karma. I’m not religious, but the one thing I know for certain is that what goes around comes around.”
I like him already! But in a “let’s hang out and be life-long friends” kind of way. Perhaps because I don’t have any butterflies or heart palpitations, or maybe because I’m tired and just want to laugh, and not think about dating for the next hour and a half. Either way I’m not going anywhere without asking his thoughts on arranged marriage…
He shares with me the story of his parents, they were introduced by their families and married only after a few dates. “They’re still together,” he says. “But are they happy?” I ask. “Happiness is relative,” he replies. “In India, people understand that they can’t have everything they want, so they learn to make compromises and they learn to be content.” “That’s definitely very different from how we view happiness. In the United States, happiness is billion-dollar industry,” I reply.
Somehow we go from talk of arranged marriages to discussing the meaning and purpose of life. Something that can be found in The Bhagavad Gita, which is “the most popular and well known of all the sacred scriptures from ancient India. Always being revered as a true source of spiritual knowledge it reveals the purpose and goal of human existence.” (source: http://www.bhagavad-gita.org/)
How’s this for deep conversation on the first date? The meaning of life, arranged marriage and happiness. “I once tried to read the Bhagavad Gita, but I sort of got lost, which is ironic,” I tell him, “maybe I’ll pick it up again, I still have the book.” “Don’t do it!” he says, “you’ll loose interest in life.” We laugh. “Cheers!” I say and raise my margarita. “To making new friends,” he says, as we clink glasses.