Challenging, scary and interesting this day should be considering the placement of it all. This is going to be my first real, blind, fancy date. Unsure if I am nervous about my date or am I nervous about the environment. This place looks sophisticated but also well off. Dylan, my blind date, must have paid a good hand to get us a place here. The Capital Grille looks too fancy for my taste.
As I walk up to the door I stare at my reflection. My hair is in its upmost natural afro state with a crown that drags across my hair and into my bun. My dark skin matches the all too good red wine lip stick and silk satin red dress that hugs my curves and shapes my body. With my gold earrings, they shine in the streetlights with sparkles through my reflection. The gold earrings compliment my skin and hair. To think my friends really went all out with my attire to this blind date. At twenty-eight years old, with these clothes on, I feel like I am forty years old. I do not recognize myself in the mirror, I rather have him know the real me through my sweat pants and overly big crop top shirt that reveals my belly button with my afro hanging out in the wind as it soaks up the sun’s beauty.
Five minutes until my date and I’m standing outside of the restaurant like a buffoon. Why am I so nervous all a sudden?
“Hey Beautiful, I don’t know about you but I have a date in four minutes.” says the man standing behind me. Looking at me through my reflection, our eyes meeting in a gaze that only the streetlights and moon could capture.
“I’m sorry! I’ll step aside for you,” I motion my hands so he could walk through the door.
“Ma’am your mask dropped on the floor,” he points to the floor.
“Oh my god my mask!” I say in anger mix with disappointment. In this time, we need to protect ourselves from the virus but I unwillingly must’ve dropped it from my wrist.
“Don’t you worry, I always carry spares because you never know when you’ll need one,” He says as he ruffles through his jacket pocket.
I stand there, in a trance. He must be the most handsome man I have ever met. He eyes were emerald green, his hair is freshly washed with a shine that illuminates the yellow from the light, a suit that is a little unkept but I somehow find it adorable, his skin pale with a hint of olive and most importantly his smile. His smile could light up this warm spring evening in cold dark New York. We gaze at each other until.
“Oh my! I forgot about my date he must be waiting for me!” I examine as I frantically try to grab for my phone to check the time.
“Here is your spare mask,” He says as he hands me a blue recyclable mask.
“Thank you so much, why don’t we head inside,” I gesture to the door with my cheeks feeling inflamed.
“After you ma’am,” he says as he opens the door.
As he walks past me, I could smell his fresh shower, cologne that smells like a husky mint forest dream with a hint of orange. Surprisingly, it is good combination. I step towards the door, cautiously to make sure that I’m not ruining my sixty-dollar heels that was a little over my spending budget but enough to seal my outfit for tonight. It has newly rained bringing in that fresh spring rain smell that I miss so much in my home state of Maryland.
Walking past the door and past the handsome stranger, I walk into a restaurant and it is so breath taking. Never have I ever been to a restaurant this fancy before. Brown and Maroon walls and ceilings, white and gray tablecloth, with that all so good smell of freshly out of the oven steak, fries, crabs, spaghetti, tomatoes, everything that your stomach desires. God have I ever been so hungry. Taking in the smell with my eyes closed and smile on my face I feel someone walk to my side.
“Smells delicious,” says the handsome gentleman.
“Yes it does, I cannot wait to eat,” I say with mischief on how I am going to enjoy this food like there is no tomorrow. But also keep it lady like for my blind date. Speaking of which, I need to find him.
“Thank you so much for the spare mask. It was really nice meeting you.” Awkwardly I put out my hand for him to shake.
Why am I shaking his hand? That I do not have the answer to. I reacted on impulse making time stand still as I wait for his response. He stares at me with a puzzled but also amused look like he been hoping to talk some more. Which cannot happen since we both have dates to attend to.
“Until we meet again.” He shakes my hand with a firm but also gentle shake.
Sparks fly threw my body. I never felt that way about anyone in such a long time. He is a mystery but also such a gentleman. He must come from a family who is upper class, private school, and a pocket full of cash. Harsh assumption but that is the aura he gives me. He walks away and hurries to the front desk to get his table. Quickly the front desk lady nods with a rather pink rose blush. They walk away into a booth in the back corner of the restaurant. My eyes are fixated on that location. If he is waiting for a date, why pick the only corner in the entire restaurant away from everybody else? Maybe for privacy purposes or because he is overly cautious about this virus. Speaking of, I haven’t seen him wear a mask when we met each other outside but it is on now that he is in the restaurant.
“Would you like a table ma’am or do you have a reservation?” The front desk lady asks. She has blonde hair that is slick back into a ponytail. Blue reusable face mask and still red rose blush over her face. At look down at her name tag and it says Amelia.
“Ah yes I do!” saying rather too loud for the restaurant.
I blush rides over my face and makes me feel like all eyes are on me tonight. Looking around, all eyes are on me. Feeling panic rise within my throat I tell myself they are looking at my amazing outfit and not my too loud answer to the hostess.
“Yes, I have a reservation with one named Dylan,” I say trying to recover myself.
“Ah yes Dylan is here! Let me show you the way!” She says a little to happy.
As we begin to walk, I notice we are going in the same direction the handsome stranger went. My stomach twists. What if he is my date? What if he knew I was his blind date this whole time? Did my friends give me away? My mind is flooded with questions. Time slows as we approach his booth. Suddenly I realize I been holding my breath but cannot release it because I still do not know if it’s his booth and if he is still there.
“As a precaution. Although majority have been getting vaccinated recently, we still ask you stay within six feet of others during your dinner” Amelia says as we approach his table.
There it is. Table reserved under the name of Dylan. My heart leaps out of my chest. There is a candle lit on the table with roses in a pink vase. The white cloth falls halfway to the floor. Then there he is, Mister handsome.
“Annalise,” he says with a shy smile that reaches his eyes.
“Dylan?” I blurt out
“The one and only. It is nice to see you again Mrs. Annalise,” he motions for me to sit with him in the booth.
He looks so eager and ecstatic to see it is me who is his blind date. Boy do I feel the same way. I cannot believe I scored a date with a handsome gentleman. Usually, I don’t go for looks, I rather date someone with an amazing personality and it seems like I got a date with someone handsome and well mannered. Smiling as I sit down hoping it would hide how excited I am to be dinning with him. Dylan. Dylan. Dylan. I like that name, surprisingly he said my named right. Which is the first but then again, my friends probably told him how to pronounce it before we arrived. We stare at each other in amazement and content. Not knowing how he is feeling. I believe that he feels the same way too. He grabs my hand and gives me another shy smile that makes my heart skip a beat. He is so confident but also nervous. I smile back with a big blush on my face. My cheeks and ears feel like the oven in the kitchen. We stare into each other’s eyes. I did not know what I was expecting today but I’m glad to agree to this blind date.
“Can I take any drinks?” Amelia asks with pen and paper in her hand.
“Yes, two glasses of Merlot,” Dylan says to Amelia but still looking at me.