October 23rd – 5 more dates to go!
Thursday afternoon rolls around and my day is getting weird already. A few things come up that completely derail my original plan to be ready for my date by 7 p.m. Which is the time east coast guy, who from now on I’ll refer to as: “Jersey Boy”, is picking me up. I can’t believe I didn’t think of this nickname before!
I text him around 5, to give him a fair warning about my delays and he’s very polite and understanding. When 7:30 rolls around, I come outside where he’s patiently waiting for me on the sidewalk, this makes me smile. I’m a little nervous about our date because the stakes are higher. This is our third time hanging out and I can’t predict how it will go, mostly because I’m not a fortuneteller, but primarily because I have agreed to go on a very uncomfortable visit to a horror house. Bad idea…
There are many things that make me jumpy. Spiders, snakes, vampires, a volatile real estate market, and definitely anything to do with the word “horror”. When he first asked what I wanted to do on our third date I said, “whatever you’d like,” obviously I should’ve said: “whatever you’d like besides a house of horrors tour, please.” But I didn’t, and now we’re on our way to dinner and soon after I’ll be facing a rather uncomfortable challenge. “I don’t like horror movies or horror houses or anything to do with scary looking people jumping out at me,” I reiterate to him as we drive to dinner. “You’ll be fine,” he says, “It’s not that bad,” he reassures me. I give him fair warning that I’ll probably shut my eyes and hold on to him for dear life, and he still seems convinced of going. Alrighty then…
At dinner I decide it’s time to ask the big third date question: “What are some of your five-year goals?” I ask. He takes a drink of his beer, and before he can answer, a cop approaches our table and says: “Jersey Boy,” (actually he calls him by his full name), “I’m gonna need you to come with me.” My jaw drops and all sorts of ridiculous thoughts cross my mind. The first one being: “Should I run?” The second: “Why the hell would you run dummy?” And then I round third with: “Oh God he’s a wanted rapist and the cop caught him right before he got a chance to…” “I know this guy,” Jersey boy tells me. “Ohhh… good!” I reply as I take a breath. So turns out he’s not a wanted serial killer, and the three of us chat it up for a couple minutes.
So where were we? Oh yeah, his five-year goals. After the cop leaves, Jersey Boy starts with his professionals goals, which are impressive. Then we move on to the personal ones, and I like what he has to say. “What about you?” he asks. It’s not as easy to answer the question as it is to ask it. But I indulge him with my dreams and my ideas. I decide there’s no point in holding back, I want him to know these things because the truth is I like him… His eyes light up when he shares some of his ideas with me, and I catch myself grinning from ear to ear, while I listen. The date is going really well.
And then we make our way to the horror house, actually it’s a pretend insane asylum of horrors, to be precise. He buys the VIP tickets so we don’t have to wait in line, and we get to walk in alone…YAYYYY! I keep reminding myself that it’s not real and they’re just actors… this is no big deal. The doors open and we’re introduced to an eerily quiet room that’s completely dark. I have the sneaking suspicion that someone is behind us so I wrap my arms around Jersey boy and shut my eyes. We walk through and there’s a lot of screaming and crying, and people jumping at us. It’s awful, I can’t see anything and the deeper we go into the “asylum”, the shakier and more anxious I get. Half-way through the “tour” I tell Jersey boy: “I don’t think I can do this anymore”. I’m too stressed, my head is buried in his chest and my legs feel like they might give in. “We’re almost done, don’t worry,” he reassures me.
It keeps getting worse, and I’m terrified. When we finally reach the exit, I hear him say: “it’s over, it’s over.” But I’m still shaking. I’m still holding on to him with clenched fists, with my head buried in his chest, and my heart still racing. I don’t want to look up at him because I’m afraid I’m about to have a freaking melt down. “Can we go now?” I ask. We bypass part two of the haunted house and make a beeline for the exit. When we get in the car five minutes later, I’m still breathing heavy, my chest is tight and suddenly I feel I might… oh crap, I’m crying. I’m literally dropping tear drops in this man’s car, on our third date!
The harder I try to hold back from crying, the faster my tears spill out. “Sorry, I don’t know what’s wrong with me,” I tell him with my face turned away so he can’t see how red it is. I’m mortified!! Of course now he feels bad and I can tell he’s truly concerned about what’s happening. He keeps apologizing for taking me to the stupid house of horrors, “I really thought it would be fun, I’m so sorry,” he tells me while he holds my hand. “It’s not your fault,” I reply, “this isn’t exactly a normal reaction to a halloween stunt.”
When we finally reach my place I’m starting to feel calmer, I guess the crying sort of helped. He sits with me and we talk about more pleasant things, until I forget we even went to that horrid place. I wonder if he’ll ever want to see me again, and just then he says: “I hope you’ll still go out with me again.” I smile, of course I want to see him again, I don’t scare off that easy! Oh wait…