Yesterday, I emailed Jess to check and see if we were still on for our date that evening. I got a reply back of “Yes, and I will let you chose the place this time.” I replied with the same restaurant that I said previously and she replied with a ‘is that next to [burger joint] – lol’. I wasn’t sure if she was kidding or not. I couldn’t believe anyone who lived in her neighborhood would not know where the restaurant was – especially, since it’s a popular French Bistro. I blew it off and gave her a general location.
That day I got off work early to take some documents downtown. As I was driving home my phone rang – it was her.
“Hi, Lanie – it’s Jess.”
I wanted so bad to say “Can you hold, please” but I didn’t. “Hey, Jess, what’s up?”
“Do you have a minute to talk? Is this a good time?”
Gee, why so serious so soon? I had a feeling she was going to try to move the date to another night again. “Sure, whats’ up” Just spit it out, woman.
“I was wondering if we could change the venue tonight. If you would mind.”
Ok, she asked me to choose the venue in the first place but I didn’t care as long as it didn’t start with a “Mc” and end with an “anolds.”
“Ok, what do you have in mind?”
“Well, [restaurant] is really close to my loft and I thought if I could talk you in to going there I would just walk over. They have a really good wine selection and have just put out their seasonal menu. Plus, [restaurant that I named] doesn’t have the wine selection and I was just really craving a glass of [name of wine].
So, she did know where the restaurant was but was just joking. Wine snob – especially, since she thought French Bistro had a poor wine selection. But there’s worse things, I guess. I had never been to the restaurant before but I always liked to try new ones and said, “Sure. That sounds nice.”
“Ok, I will see you at 7:00 then.”
I wandered in to the restaurant fifteen minutes early It was in a renovated warehouse that had exposed brick walls. There were windows up high and the lighting was low. I loved the atmosphere immediately. I pulled up a chair at the bar and ordered a Zinfandel from Paso Robles. I could be a wine snob myself. I no more took the first sip when I heard “Are you Lanie?” Jess was early as well. She sat down to my left and we started talking after she ordered a blend from Northern California. The conversation flowed a little easier after that. Despite being the same age, Jess appeared to be slightly older than her public online picture but attractive all the same. She was dressed in jeans, a starched oxford shirt over a white crew neck t-shirt. I noticed the watch she was wearing was in the upper k’s and she had a diamond band on her right hand as well as diamond studs in both ears. I immediately formed the impression the woman had a lot of disposable income and it was confirmed later by her referring to “one of her cars” as being in the upper 100k categories. I just couldn’t’ imagine affording such a luxury item. When she told me what her car payment was I almost spit my wine out across the bar. It was more than my mortgage payment. Despite my assumption being correct and the differences in income levels it did not make me uncomfortable. I looked around the restaurant and thought it was a rather upscale place for being the location of a first date. I wondered if I had chosen one of the beer pubs/joints or even chosing the French Bistro that I frequent put her off. I also thought that there couldn’t be too many more dates like this or I would be broke very fast.
Dinner and the conversation was very nice. I enjoyed it. I learned all about her motorcycle (despite not seeing it that night), her two dogs and her family. Like myself, her mother passed in ’99. Unlike myself she was the oldest of four siblings who she was very close to. I heard a lot about her job but only after she asked me about mine. Unlike my earlier fears she didn’t go on and on about herself although there could have been more questions directed my way. After a wonderful dinner I offered to walk her to her loft. On the way there we passed a small lounge that I had no idea existed. We decided to go inside and have an after dinner drink. She knew the bartender and server and we were introduced to the only other patron who was sitting at the bar. The place was dead and I wondered how it wasn’t in the red until Jess told me that it was a write off for one of the doctors who owned a loft in her complex. We split a drink that I had never heard of – a Pisco sour. It was very good and Jess talked about how she made them herself with key limes.
Afterwards, I walked her to the gate of her loft but stopped right there to say goodbye. She knew I had an early morning and apologized for keeping me out too late.
“Oh, no it’s fine – I had a good time. Thanks!”
“You ok to walk back to your car?”
“Oh yeah [I have my knife] I’m fine.”
I walked back across the street and to the valet for my car. It was a nice evening but I didn’t feel any spark what-so-ever. I could see the possibility of going for a ride together or even playing golf but nothing more. As I pulled in to the carport I got a text:
“Did you go to the Kid Rock/Sheryl Crow concert tonight?”
Teri. There’s the spark.