I’m on the ferry, heading in for another coffee date. A rare second date! (Maybe Bigfoot exists, too. And Santa.) This midday Sunday sailing is full, loaded with people coming and going from visits with the relatives. No doubt, there are more than a few last-minute shoppers, too. I never know how I am going to respond inside to being immersed as a spectator in social hoopla. For now, it is fine. The date helps. I have a purpose. We’ll see how I handle the return trip if it turns out to be a fizzler.
The first date happened sometime around a different holiday: Halloween. Our schedules just haven’t meshed since then. Consider that a bad sign—not meant to be—or think of it as a good sign: persistence against all odds. I’m not viewing it as any sign at all. I am more concerned that I don’t remember an awful lot from our previous coffee encounter, a pleasant exchange at a café outlet just outside Vancouver’s central library branch. I’d spent the afternoon researching and writing for a current project. I don’t remember much about that either. So, technically, it is a second date but it feels like a first all over again.
What does he look like again?
I knew at the end of our first meeting that he’d wanted to meet again. I was game, too. But there is no momentum. He’d initially suggested a day of skiing which I kiboshed. I don’t know him well enough to embarrass myself on such a grand scale. And a full day on the hills seemed like a big step for a first-ish second date. So it’s coffee to go and an exploration on foot of Vancouver’s West End until things naturally play themselves out. Smaller steps. I just hope I’m not left with half a cup of still-hot coffee when we bid adieu!
The ferry buzz has quieted down. Not as many teens loudly chatting—Notice me!—as they do laps around the boat’s interior. No children running around playing tag as their parents play Let’s Pretend They’re Not Ours. The biggest distraction is a grandma sitting across the aisle from me. She is playing some sort of game on her phone and she’s got the volume at max. DING! DING! I feel like a Skinner rat or a Pavlovian dog. Where’s my treat?
Maybe it will come on the date. There’s still time to add me to the Naughty list. It’s as much as I can wish for this Christmas.