Last night, Mirror Image and I went out for our first Valentine’s Night meal. You may (or not) recall last year that we were not a couple then – we had been on one date in early December and it would be about a week after Valentine’s Day that we would meet again and share our First Kiss and umm, end up in bed the night after that.
It was the first time I went out with an intimate partner for such a mean in four years. Three years ago I spent it in with a couple of bottles of beer and the film Alien. Two years ago, moping over Ubergeek and another cancellation from Little Red having expected to be on a romantic date with the former or just a friendly lunch with the latter, I had a therapy session. Last year, Mirror Image and I had a Skype session which was lovely, but afterwards it was me, beer and a film. This weekend felt like a resumption of normal service – albeit with somebody new.
I indulged in a spot of people-watching last night and I broadly grouped the people into the following.
- On the verge of a break-up. They might not have been, they may just have been completely unimpressed with the food or the atmosphere, or they may have had a bad week and were not in the mood for any of it, thinking they would get into it if they forced themselves to go out. Few words are spoken between them, and there is very little eye contact. They are in and out of the restaurant within an hour, one trailing behind the other.
- First daters. Again, they might not have been on a first date – they could have just been feeling very loved up and happy. In stark contrast to above, they talk a lot. They talk so much and seem so lost in each other that they forget they actually have food to eat. The wine flows as easily as the conversation. They take ages to leave, about ten minutes to move the 20 feet from their table to the door
- Married couples rekindling. It seems a little awkward because the romance has been gone a long time, but they are trying. He pulls the chair out for her to sit down and she is taken aback. He is equally taken aback when she says he should have a beer rather than share a bottle of wine with her because “that’s what you like”
- I’m single and I love it. Sometimes come in twos but more likely in groups of between three and eight. One or more may have recently become single and they’ve decided to show their love to “the boys” or “the girls” for sticking by them. Groups of males are more likely to be seen in pubs that serve food, and in curry houses. The abode of the female group is likely to be the Italian or Chinese restaurant.